Sunday, April 23, 2006

north Texas flower show

I was riding my bike through Argyle on Wednesday and noticed several nice patches of wildflowers blooming along US 377. I decided to try to come back soon and attempt to photograph some trains along the UP Choctaw Sub. I headed back to Argyle on Saturday morning to spend a couple hours along the tracks, and managed to get one train -- a southbound coal load -- rolling through town around 10:30 am. We're not expecting much of a bluebonnet bloom this year because of the drought, but there's still some spring color to be found. I believe the flowers shown here are pink evening primrose -- certainly a welcome addition of spring color after suffering through an exceptionally dry, brown winter.

Since the weather warmed up, I've been trying to ride at least a hundred miles per week on my bike. I've just finished my third week of over a hundred miles, which I completed during a 45-mile round trip to Denton on Wednesday (the day I noticed the flowers). I don't really consider myself "in training" for anything; I'm just out to get some good exercise (in my line of work, I could definitely use some). And I'm enjoying spending some time outdoors in the fresh air before it gets too hot. I usually try to ride near a rail line -- the possibility of seeing a train or two is kind of an extra motivating factor for me to get out and ride 20 or 30 miles.

During the two hours I spent around Argyle on Saturday, there must have been 50 or more cyclists out and about -- probably part of some D-FW-area club. I kind of felt like I should have been out there with them, instead of sitting on my ass in the truck waiting for a train to show up. But I usually get my miles in during the work week, when all the guys I saw Saturday are probably sitting in some office somewhere. And I'm not really a social rider -- I enjoy spending time alone when I have a chance to ride.

All for now...


np: Slaid Cleeves - "Wishbones"
nr: Expedition to the Southwest -- An 1845 Reconnaissance of Colorado, New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma -- Lieutenant James William Abert


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