Today was a great day in more ways than one. First of all the conditions on the tracks were as good as on Christmas Eve, but there was no rain. Also, the bike felt a lot more familiar and I wasn’t fumbling around with the levers, missing shifts and what not.
We were on the Luukki Northeast circuit, which we had ridden several times in spring and summer. It was great to be back to see how it would feel after all the riding we’d done in the summer.
I was trying to start slow to warm up properly, but I was way too excited for that. Instead we were very fast through the first sections. I felt my lungs burning but, the riding was just too good to shift to lower gears and drop pace.
Luukki had also seen a fair bit of damage from the fall and winter storms. Big trees had been rooted and were lying about. It looked pretty chaotic and made for some interesting route finding, when the track was covered.
There must have been around half a dozen trees on the trail that you couldn’t ride over. Hike-a-bike action.
Even though there was no rain, the terrain was pretty wet. Not as wet as during the spring though, but still wet. The terrain was still very rideable as the soil was frozen deeper down. This was also the reason that the water didn’t absorb into the ground.
It was funny how much the terrain looked like spring. Most of the are is covered with pine and fir, so the absence of foliage didn’t really stand out. Instead the terrain still looked incredibly lush, with streams snaking in green moss, surrounded by rich hues of brown and red.
The only issue was daylight. Today the sun rose at 0925 and set at 1516, resulting in 5h 51min of daylight. We were packing lights in case we were delayed or wanted to do a detour at some point. Fortunately we had no issues and got out of the detours too before daylight faded.
All in all a fantastic ride in a beautiful setting. I wish winters in the capital area were always like this.