Friday, after work, I ran home, changed clothes, grabbed my bike and camping gear and sped across town to the southernmost point of the Frisco Highline Trail at Kearney and Hwy. 44. I parked my car, unloaded my stuff and hit the trail with a goal of reaching 7C's Winery, above Walnut Grove, before the sun fell behind the hills. I was to meet a few people from the Springfield Sunrise Coffee & Bicycle Club for a Sub 24-hour Overnight (S24O) camp trip.
After about an hour and 40 minutes and 19.6 miles, I made it off the trail, up the farm roads and hills to the winery. About this time I got a text saying the others had some technical difficulties and were just getting started. They wouldn't be there until nearly 10pm. I went ahead and rang the doorbell of the winery and Dwight and Jean, the owners, graciously opened the doors for me after hours. We had arranged to stay there a couple of days before. I bought a dry red and a half bottle of semi-dry white, one to take home and the other to drink that evening, as well as a couple of bottles of water that I promptly drained of their contents. Then I went about setting up my tent and waiting out the the arrival of the others.
The girls got there about 10pm, set up their gear and then went up to the tasting room. Dwight fired up the grill and we had a late dinner on the back porch. The night sky was super clear, with very little light pollution and the stars were out in all their glory. Cicadas sang us to sleep and coyotes, whippoorwills and owls did their best to wake us. I didn't mind. With zero rain in the forecast, I didn't bother with the rain fly of my tent and every time I awoke, I just stared at the night sky for a while through the mesh ceiling.
Up early the next morning. Coffee and breakfast before picking up and heading back to town.
A special thanks to the owners of 7C's Winery. We very likely overstepped our welcome on this trip and they were incredibly nice about it. If you read this and find yourself near Walnut Grove, Missouri, please go see them and pickup a bottle or two of their wine or mead. It's good stuff!
Sunday morning, John and I rode another 34.4 miles, from my house and down Seminole to Lone Pine, Sunshine, Oak Grove and out of town by way of Catalpa. We saw a lot of wildlife on the stretch of road north of Sunshine/Hwy. D - eight deer, two skunks, a fox and a barred owl.
Once we hit Hwy. D, we went through the hills of Turners and meandered our way out to Rogersville, then across Hwy. 60 and back on FR 186 and the Galloway Greenway. We made really good time this trip. Much faster than the previous two times we've ridden the route. I downloaded Strava this weekend, which is a tracking App that monitors your route, speed, ascents, time, etc. It's a lot more accurate than the one I was using. We averaged about 18 MPH on the way back to town on 186 and I bombed one hill at 28.5 MPH. I never knew we got up to speeds like that until this App. Pretty cool.
It was starting to warm up considerably by the time we got back to my house, but it was a nice ride, overall. I biked about 73 miles for the weekend and I've already put over 200 miles on the new Masi CX.