Ahhhh yes, the vocalizations of the group night ride. Especially after a wind and rain storm from the day before.
Even though I had ridden on the trail in broad daylight earlier today, it did nothing to prepare me for riding through the debris in the dark. A little bit freaky. I met up with Jean where the Chehalis Western meets the Woodland Trail. We rode the rest of the way to the start where we met up with the guys (except Brad who met up with us as we headed back up the trail).
Through certain sections there was a constant chorus of, "Stick, branch, stick, whoa...tree!". I hung back to give myself maneuvering room. Since we were 7, I had the freedom to move back and forth when I was off the back. I still managed to keep up until we got to the roundabout on Rainier (the one section of road we go on to get back to the trail). Then there was a car coming through the roundabout so I waited. No problem--I caught back up back on the trail. It was also raining at that time...then it stopped.
We made it to our usual turnaround at the trail junction. Jean had so much stuff in her front wheel, she had to take it off to clean it out. I really like my new fenders. Stuff doesn't seem to accumulate like it did with the old fenders. Yay!
On the way back, I was following Ron when I saw him jump his bike over a couple of large-ish branches (almost tree size if you ask me). I just, automatically, did the same. Perfect!
I even took a turn at the front with Chip. It was actually less stressful as I could see the branches better. All in all, it was a pretty decent ride. If nothing else, I learned I can roll over a whole bunch of *#%# and still come out upright! I'm sure it won't be the last ride of this kind!