Monday, October 26, 2015

Coyote Ugly And Murder On The Trail

I got my long ride in this weekend - and it was glorious! I did a little swaperoo and did the long ride Saturday instead of the usual Sunday, which felt good so I think I'll do that from now on as it allows me a day of slow riding before I start work on Monday. This was my ride:

I started my ride around 7:30 am. The route wasn't set in stone as I figured I would see how long it would take me once I got to Puyallup. I had plans for later in the afternoon and needed to be back home by 4 at the latest.

It was still foggy but the air was nice and crisp, allowing for perfect biking conditions. Above is the view from Renton. My new bike was still in the shop so I rode my old bike, which was another reason why I hadn't decided for sure how far this ride was going to be.

I was surprised when I encountered the Interurban Trail once I had passed Renton - which was every bit as rifle-in-the-back-of-the-truck as I'd imagined. The pot smoke was hanging heavy over south Renton as well. But the trail - oh, it was magnificent! I didn't know it was there but now that I've found it, I think it'll be a regular.

The Interurban Trail is an 18.1-mile trail that runs nearly straight and flat for 14.8 miles from its beginning in the north near Fort Dent Park. The route connects the towns of Tukwila, Kent, Auburn, Algona, and Pacific. The trail was a delight. Well, it was, until I encountered my first coyote. At first I thought it was a dog so I looked to see if I could spot its owner. As I got closer I realized it wasn't a dog. It was the size of a german shepherd but strange looking. I guess I was about 30 feet away from it when it became clear that A) it was a coyote, and B) that coyote didn't intend to move out of the path. Being that I've never encountered a coyote before in my life, I had no idea what the correct behavior was. But as I stood there looking at the coyote, and the coyote was looking back at me - kind of like an old west stand-off, I remembered the advice for the bear encounters:

Not the stay calm part, but of all things, I decided to say "booo!". Nothing. The coyote just kept standing there looking at me. Now I figure I wouldn't make much of a snack, but one can never know for sure so I started planning my escape. Where are those road runners when one needs them?

Then all of a sudden, the coyote sauntered slowly into the ditch, while casting the occasional glance back at me just to let me know that it wasn't moving on account of being scared of me but because it chose to.

With the coyote off the trail, I still wasn't convinced that it wasn't lurking at me from the ditch, just waiting to pounce me as I biked past so just to make sure I biked as far as I could on the opposite side of the trail from where the coyote disappeared. As I biked past, I glanced down in the ditch and there it was - just standing there, looking up at me. At least it wasn't a bear.

A little further down the trail, I spotted a make shift memorial by the trail. Turns out a man was stabbed to death on the trail.

His name was Mike, but there were other posters asking if one knew who he was. If you know who Mike was, please contact Auburn Police at 253-931-3030.

This ride was getting weirder and weirder, and it didn't help that I was biking close to the Green River Trail.

At least that guy is behind bars.

The trail goes along the trail tracks but also under the power lines. I was thinking I might get super powers from it, like super human speed akin to The Flash. No such luck. I only had to wait for a passing train once though.

You can't see it from this picture, but if you're in the marked for an aluminum sided building, the one just across the track is for sale.

The bridges where Interurban intersects with Green River
This Saturday's ride was the friendliest ride I've done. Everyone was all smiles and hellos. This one guy I passed by Beacon Hill smiled so much I was afraid his ears were going to fall off! But it was all good, and it made for a pleasant ride.

The ride took me a little over eight hours so I was back in time to see Zombies in downtown Issaquah. The zombies were the least committed ones I've seen so far. Some of them were even running - and no self-respecting zombies run. Unless you're in World War Z, but that's just silly.

Sunday I rode around Lake Sammamish with hubby. The weather was unseasonably warm. I had put on layers of clothing since Saturday's bike ride was so cold, but had to shed these pretty quickly. It was also windy, making it feel like I was riding inside of a blow dryer. This time we didn't stop for breakfast at Whole Foods, which wasn't a great idea on the account of hubby being completely wiped after. Next weeked, we will make our usual stop.

This weekend's grand total: 140 miles give or take.

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