Home on the range


This morning we were greeted by a special guest appearance by the sun! Yay! After a delicious breakfast of biscuits, fruit salad and T’s yummy veggie scramble, M & I had a lake swim in our sights. But as we were getting ready, we saw that our departure was going to be delayed by a cattle drive. Yes, you read that correctly. The main road had cowboys driving a herd of cattle to a pasture up the road from us.

It was pretty impressive to watch real cowboys at work. Plus there were a couple of kids in the mix, one a girl of around 11 or 12 and a little boy who was probably 6 0r 7. It boggles the mind that while I was sitting in my suburban family room watching TV at that age, these kids are wrangling cattle. But once the excitement died down, it was time to head for the lake.

We were joined by the boys, T to do some homework/sketching in the sunshine and J to ride his bike on the road by the lake. (Have we started something here? I think maybe… ) The water level was much higher than last year, which meant starting our swim in the long grass that used to be the shore. (Gross.) M wasn’t sure what she’d be able to do, so we started off with me swimming a few strokes out and having her swim to me. But even though she was scared, we managed to swim way out to the middle of the lake. Here’s proof, courtesy of the waterproof camera:

Some fishermen who probably thought we were crazy:

And yours truly:

After M & I swam back in, I did a couple of laps of the lake on my own. It was so much nicer to swim on a sunny day! (But now I know that I’m ready for whatever Pacific Crest throws at me weather-wise!) J earned major bad-ass points by doing a hilly ride up to the lodge we had lunch at last year. We headed back to the house for some lunch before heading out on a ride of our own.

Originally, I’d planned to do a long ride on my own, but the prospect of spending 3-4 hours out on my bike and getting home late in the evening didn’t thrill me. So, I altered my plan to do a higher-intensity ride on the same route that T & M were planning to ride. (The same road T & I had ridden yesterday.) My plan was to ride ahead of T & M and go as hard as I could to the campground that we’d gotten water at yesterday, wait for them then ride another mile or so up for M to get her 25 miles, then repeat for the trip back.

Given the difficulty of yesterday’s workout, I was pleasantly surprised at how good I felt on the bike. I did manage to take a few pics of the pretty ride as well:

The wind picked up for the return trip home, making me very grateful for my aerobars. The headwind was so bad in places that by the time I got back to the car I was wondering if I should drive out to see if T & M were okay. But they pulled about five minutes behind me without any issues. Then it was back to the house for PIZZA!

While we’d been riding, J was hard at work on pizza-making:

Prep list:

It was quite a parade of pizza goodness. And basically a free-for-all when the new pizzas emerged. But when the dust settled, everyone had more than enough to eat and we contentedly lounged in the living room. Jenn had made her evil chocolate truffle cookies again, which we had for dessert. A day that starts with cowboys should end in chocolate, it’s only fitting.


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