Monday, June 25, 2007

TRIRI Summary

The Touring Ride of Rural Indiana (TRIRI) was fantastic! It's a really nice way for us to vacation together. The DH (dear hubby) is not much of a typical tourist, but he loves pedaling. The bike tour has a nice balance of physical challenge, adventure, and sitting around doing nothing time - all elements I enjoy in a vacation. We're already planning next year's bike tour.

We rode in 95-degrees with a headwind, and 59-degrees with rain. We rode through flat corn fields and very hilly woods. Most of the roads were extremely rural. Here are a few memories...

Day One - Mooresville to Turkey Run State Park (64 miles)
We rode with Mark, a long-time friend of the DH's. It was a pleasant surprise to find him on this ride. The first 54 miles clipped along well. The last 10 were tough for me - it got really hot (95) and we had a head wind. But I made it with not too much complaining. ;-) This day turned out to be the toughest ride for me.

The tour organizers note any "attractions" along the way. Here's a Statue of Liberty model we passed in the middle of cornfields in Indiana!

The DH having a little fun at our lunch stop.

We didn't plan to dress alike! (Notice I'm on my tiptoes, trying to look taller.)

Home Sweet Home...we got a new 3-person tent for this ride and I am very grateful! Our 2-person tent does NOT hold us and our stuff.

Day Two - Turkey Run
We stayed 2 nights at each State Park. On the second day, we had the options to ride or hike. I chose to hike. Turkey Run is an incredibly beautiful park! Old growth forests and deep limestone ravines.

Day Three - Turkey Run to McCormick's Creek (74 miles)

This was the ride I was most anxious about because I hadn't ridden anywhere near 74 miles prior to this trip. This day was actually easier on me than the first ride because it wasn't hot. The ride was hilly - with plenty of wide, sweeping downhills and challenging uphills. We made good time and I enjoyed it. It was a spiritual learning for me, truly. I learned to trust the DH when he told me I could do the distance; trust myself that I could do it; and trust that if I couldn't make the distance and had to take the "sag" van, that was OK too. I had a fit of hysterical laughing just before we hit a very big and final (or so I thought) hill and then cried the final mile (of hill) into the park - tears of pure exhaustion and joy.

On the way, we passed two covered bridges.

Lunch stop - there's not much to find in some of the small towns we rode through. Here, we have a combo hardware and convenience store. Lunch consisted of Pringles, Coke and Hostess cupcakes. Yummm! (Hey - when I'm burning this many calories, any calories are quickly converted to energy.)

Day Four - McCormick's Creek
Hiking the creek bed...

An abandoned limestone quarry. The limestone from here was used to build the state capitol.

Speaking of limestone, the entertainment for our last night at McCormick's Creek was the movie Breaking Away. It was perfect, because the next day we rode through Bloomington where the story is based and the movie was filmed.

Day Five - McCormick's Creek to Brown County (45 miles)
We rode through Nashville and enjoyed a broccoli, spinach and onion pizza.

And life is still good...

It rained this night, but our tent stayed dry! Wahoo!

Day Six - Shopping in Nashville
I spent this layover day in Nashville, where I enjoyed shopping the JB Goods store. I picked up a "technical" fabric t-shirt with this logo.

I had a great time poking around in the quirky little shops of this artist community. Later that afternoon, I studied the maps for the final day home. Notice the nifty little chair I'm sitting in. It folds up very compactly, but works great for camping!!

Day Seven - Brown County to Mooresville (47 miles)
A rainy and cool ride home. We made great time. Stopped at the Touchable Sculpture Garden. Begun in 1970, these 10 acres are adorned with various and diverse sculptures, all carved by CR Schiefer. It's really incredible! It's also in the middle of nowhere.

We also stopped at an old-fashioned candy shop in Martinsville.

And the perfect finish to a wonderful trip...pie!


Anonymous said...

Steph - you look like you had a great look so relaxed!! good for you.... Connie

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing your trip with us Steph. Congratulations on making 74 miles! When I read your description of that, I thought how ALIVE you were during that ride.

Having grown up in Mich, it was a real trip down memory lane to see the scenery - it's so similar, small towns, covered bridges & all. I'd forgotten how beautiful & green it is there.

You & DH look like you had an amazing adventure - so healthy & relaxed. I'm happy for you. -Cindy

Anonymous said...

You looked so put together for someone camping and riding a bike!
How you. :) Stacy

Jes said...

WOW~WOW~WOW! What a groovy vaca!!!!! And how cool you ran into an old friend!

AND what an absolute cutey your are!

I think this is a very inspiring post Steph!!! Thanks for sharing your well spent miles with us! YOU ROCK GIRL!



Allison said...

This looks like it was a great ride with beautiful scenery- I'm so glad you guys had a good time! Congrats on making all those miles too!

John said...

I miss creeks and water like that. I like canoeing and miss that about the east.

Kas said...

Congratulations! Thank you for sharing this adventure with us through this great post! We were thinking about you & T while you were gone and holding good thoughts for a safe and enjoyable journey. (The summer before I met JSM, I worked at a camp not far from Nashville and so have many fond memories of poking around that great little town too.) So glad you enjoyed yourselves!!

Anonymous said...

Steph, you and Tom look great! What an awesome trip. All the great lush scenery makes me miss Bloomington.
congratulations on your physical feat. how did you condition for that? Can't wait to hear more about it!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Your trip looks amazing! I am glad it went so well, and was so beautiful!

BloomingtonGirl said...

You rock, Steph! I think I'll tune up my bike...