Cycling: Long Draper Loop

01minorpointI wanted to just get away, to take a long quiet ride in the country. Draper Lake sounded like just the thing. Of course, I know that nature will always seize my eyes with some vision of beauty, so I carried my wife’s pocket camera just in case. How sad, because you won’t get to see half of what grabbed my attention out there, since her camera doesn’t do landscape that well. I’m spoiled by the big camera.

02crossthebayThe water is still very nice and clear, so the it looks blue instead of orange with sediment. I was poking around a point of land that called my name as I rode past. Once I finished there, I was seized by the appearance of bright orange balls hanging on a tree just off the road.06persimmons Lo and behold, it was persimmons! Now, you have to understand that they usually become edible sometime after the first frost. That’s what causes them to stop growing and start to sweeten. However, we haven’t had a frost, so they simply aged on their own internal schedule after growing full size. I couldn’t resist, and plucked one. I was stunned by how mature and sweet it was, with not a hint of bitterness. Also, notice that this was shot with my iPhone, and turned out really well.

03newroadFarther around I came back to where the road construction started on the NE segment of the lake drive. At the east end, all that’s left is landscaping and painting the stripes. I followed it all the way around to where the construction tapers off showing each stage of how it was done.04roadstages Just off in the far background and around to the left (past the branch visible on the left) it rejoins the old roadbed, a short stretch running back out to the new entrance drive. This stretch is now being ripped up for re-landscaping. As I approached where the digger stood, I asked a workman if there was any reason I couldn’t attempt to pass through there. He told me to just stay out of the way of the digger. That was easy; there was an old equestrian path along the left side that was just about passable if I walked my bike (not visible in the image here, below right).

05removingoldroadAs I drew closer to the digger, he spotted me and then began moving the thing around. He quickly picked up a bucket load and dumped it off to the right, and then swung back around and pushed open a path alongside the edge of the roadbed. Then he yelled at me to come through. How nice! It was quite a struggle to come down a small bluff off the path, but I didn’t want to be ungracious, so I came down and passed through, mounted and rode along onto the still extant old road to the gate area.

Upon returning home, it clocked at about 36 miles and I was beat. Please note that I’m nearing 70% on the picture storage capacity for this free WordPress account, so I’ll be making the pictures smaller and posting fewer of them until I can afford a “pro” account (currently $100 USD per year).

About Ed Hurst

Disabled Veteran, prophet of God's Laws, Bible History teacher, wannabe writer, volunteer computer technician, cyclist, Social Science researcher
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6 Responses to Cycling: Long Draper Loop

  1. Christine says:

    Ed, in the same shot as the persimmons, what am I seeing on the other tree? Blue .. is it fruit??

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  2. Ed Hurst says:

    The persimmon trees are clustered around an evergreen. I can’t tell you the name but it’s a common native tree and those little knots are the fruit. As kids we used them as ammunition with cheap slingshots and they are hard and knobby and sting.

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  3. Christine says:

    Haha – not only ammunition, I’ve just looked it up, the tree seems to be a member of the juniper family. Medicinal, of course.

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  4. Ed Hurst says:

    Well, I can’t find any reference to juniper fruit with the little horns this tree’s fruit bears. Up close they are blue-green, always very hard with dull spikes projecting. When crushed the fruit emits a strong pine scent like the sap.

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  5. Christine says:

    So cones then .. hmm ..

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  6. Ed Hurst says:

    Yeah, you guessed it: eastern red cedar.

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