The moons aligned Monday for the opening of my personal quest for a 1,500 mile year. That may not sound like much, particularly for those of you south of here, but only the hardiest Iowans -- and the unlicensed -- ride outdoors from October through March.
A year ago, I got a head start logging 70 miles outdoors while vacationing in Florida. Twelve miles on March 31 were my first of 2008. I didn't ride in Iowa until April 23.
The year before, I rode nearly 25 miles over the last four days of March -- seven meaningless miles within my 1.5 mile circus of comfort and the rest at Lake Ozark State Park in Missouri. My first serious Iowa ride was April 22.
So March 16 stands as a personal best, and that it measured 22 miles is perhaps indicative of my level of cabin fever. With temperatures in the high 60s -- and after returning late from a great rock concert in Moline -- a day off was in order.
Road avoidant this time of year, I took the trail north to its pavement end. It was windy, particularly on the return, but I'm not complaining. Tomorrow is supposed to be even nicer, followed by the expected not-so-nice.