The plan for today's ride was to ride to where Tono Rd. comes into Big Hanaford Rd. and go left on BH. As I rolled up to the intersection and looked to my left, what to my wondering eyes do I see? A DEAD END sign. Dang, I hate dead end roads! BUT, I decided to ride it to the end anyway. In a previous post (How a 45 mile ride became 65--or something like that), I mentioned that I came out onto Big Hanaford Rd. from the forest service road. Well, less than a mile beyond that point, the road ended at the TransAlta property. However, one cool thing I saw, as I was riding on this dead end road, was a herd of elk. They were running along in a pasture. I got a picture, but they are a ways off. Here it is anyway.
On the way back, before I reached Tono Rd., I was trying to decide whether to continue on Big Hanaford past the steam plant or go back up Tono (the very hilly option). I looked down at my front tire and noticed it looked low. When I got to a wide spot in the road, I stopped and felt the tire. Sure enough it was squishy. I had checked both tires before I left. The front was not squishy then. So, I changed the tube. Ironically (or luckily), when I left the house this morning, I got about 1/2 mile down the road and realized I didn't have my bike pump. Yesterday, I had put a new rear tire on Stella as the sidewall had blown out on the old one. I hadn't changed the front tire (I have now!)Anyway, I turned around and picked up the pump. Good thing! After I changed the flat, I decided it was Tono Rd. (hills and all). When I got to Tenino, I stopped at Subway for some lunch. It was only about 1:00 so I figured I could ride to Rainier on the trail and take the road back. When I got to Rainier, I calculated that it would be another 18 miles if I continued to Yelm on the trail and took the road back from there. I had plenty of time, so that's what I did. The ride ended up being 74 miles of which only 2 were uncharted territory! Still, a good day in the saddle (flat tire and all)!