This Sunday, like most days this August, was hot and humid. We straight out decided to swim at Lake Monroe, but took the long way to Pine Grove, riding south first then east and south.
We traveled the bike route from the YMCA to Jackson Creek School, then up Rhorer Rd. and down Harrell Road to Stipp, our favorite no brakes hill. It has been closed for many months due to the spring/summer floods that have kept the lake high for months, and going down just to ride back up is a bit masochistic, if not fun. We dipped our feet in water at the Moore’s Creek ramp. Legend has it that my daughter and her high school boyfriend once drove our car into the water here, so it has special meaning…road ends in water!
We once again survived climbing Schwartz Ridge Road and quickly made to 446, and then on to Pine Grove Road, a mile downhill with a few little hills on the way. We went straight to the boat ramp, and walked our bike around the outcropping of rock that defines the next hollow. We changed into swim suits and hit the water. It was incredible that just a few weeks ago had been diving from rocks that were now 15 feet out of the water and 10 feet from the water. Still, the channel of Salt Creek is right next to the ridge at this place (that’s why they have the boat ramp there, it gets deep quickly.) So we were able to dive, swim and dive as we wished. We eventually got out and as it was late in the day, dried off and changed.
As we were watched some yakkers launch, we were surprised to see a Conservation Officer (with gun and badge) come around the point. He seemed friendly enough, but he was checking us our for sure. We had our towels and suits drying on our bikes (we had our bikes parked in the woods nearby), and we wondered if he would roust us out of there, we’ve been thrown out of the lake before.
We chatted a bit, and he saw Jojo was drinking fruit juice (not beer) and eating a bagel. We were just a couple of graybeards, strange with the bikes, but understandable. (He had first asked the yakkers if they had DNR stickers, they did.)
We headed out after that, taking Knight’s Ridge Rd., a bit longer than SR 446, but much less traffic, noise and sun.) This road is often used by racers in training, we often hear them shouting “On your left”) as they go whizzing by, but not today, it was just too hot.