Anyhow, we're here to discuss the Fall. Autumn. That wonderful, beautiful season that fits like a sweet little puzzle piece between the heat and vibrant life of the Summer and the cold and death of Winter. The squirrels scrambling to get their stashes filled, the deciduous trees starting to shut their business down for the year, the confusion of the temperature in the air, with an 80 degree day in the Fall feeling a lot "cooler" than an 80 degree day during the Summer. You know, the Fall, the absolute greatest time to ride!
I am simply amazed at the dwindling numbers of riders in the 3rd season of the year. It was just a few short weeks ago that when I'd hit my local, after work ride (M-Hill) there would be 8-10 cars in the parking lot and I'd see 10-15 riders on the trails. Now, it is 3-4 cars in the lot and I might see 4 or 5 riders on the trail. Another great example is our weekly group ride. Just a month ago we had over 20 riders on our Tuesday (now Thursday) ride. 20 guys on mountain bikes together! This Thursday was, get ready for it, 3. FRICKIN' THREE!?! I wasn't as upset by this as I was just blown away.
I get it. People are much like their little furry friends the squirrels. Scrambling to get stuff done before the Winter comes. Stuff they might have put off during those Summer weekends to go ride. Raking the yard, cleaning up the garage, cleaning up their gardens are all great things to get accomplished in the Fall, but Autumn is the greatest time to ride!
You're the most fit you'll be all year. All those "base" miles from the Spring. All those hard rides from the Summer (and some of them might just be *gasp* training rides). Your legs, lungs and heart are much like the fruits or vegetables in the garden. Planted in the Spring, tended and nurtured in the Summer months and available for harvest in the Fall. Now is the time to harvest! The weather is absolutely perfect, not too cold, not too hot. The trails are not as busy (I guess until everyone reads this). The colors are starting to change. Wildlife is more visible. The only drawback to the Fall is the days are getting shorter and shorter, so riding before or after work is getting harder to do. But, man, the weekends (or your days off) are primo for riding.
If you've hung that bike up for the Fall, or are making all those "excuses" to not ride, make some time and get out and ride. You'll fall for the Fall.