The winds of seasonal change were up and running again and with sunny clear skies predicted this time we were ready for whatever the chill of darkness would bring. Big Mike made time to come on down and join us as we were presently surprised by ‘Honest Jeff’ who came on over from HJ’s. He was stoked and ready in a ‘Specialized’ kind of way. We were all ready for the next great mountain bike adventure. Tonight’s ride was a 32-35 miler scheduled to travel into and through 28 different Parks.
Mike started to Belly ache when he first learned of the proposed distance for tonight’s ride. The words, ‘Heavy Pull’ came whimpering out of his mouth. A word usually associated with describing a female Cat came to mind? Instead I chose silence as Jeff took the stage and said he was ready for it! Blasting canfield to Buchanon west once again we were on our way with map in hand as it would be stuck to my handle bar and consulted often. Crossing over I-94 on Warren we made a quick turn down McGraw and hit three parks right in a row! North bound on Braden Street we entered into Park #8. A quick left onto Kirkwood we headed west to Lanyo then North on into Dearborn traveling down the hidden Mountain bike trail that runs parallel to the Rail road track dumping us out on Wyoming. North across Warren we turned left on Morross St. and headed on up and over to ‘X’ marks the spot. This park is slated as a potential spot for an Urban Farm Hub. ! of the 5 that we feel has a strong enough viable local residential community who might enjoy riding or walking on over to support the park system. In a world without cars, then what? The neighborhood is comprised of the intersection of Esper and Littlefield Blvd. The Masonic Mark and homes that Anchor each corner are unmistakable.
There are 3) ‘X’ mark the spots or in François De-troit. The second visible ‘X’ can be founded northwest in Redford Twp. Fordson Hwy and Plymouth road. The third ‘X’ is hidden but if you trace out the 45 degree alignments it will guide you through the center of U of D Mercy and hit the mark where Mr. Palmers father in laws Log Cabin would have been. Okay back to the ride. Through Anthony Park we turned right on Mark Twain and in through park #11 heading Northwest. Northwest turn through park #12 we turned west on Westfield and made our way to Stopel Park #2, which for us was #13. As luck would have it only two blocks away we were all pushing fast and hard. Westfield eastbound is about 4″ higher than the west bound at the center line crack. Jeff was drifting to his left and did not see the split. He went down hard like someone had tackled him? I stopped dead in my tracks in disbelief? Bloody knee dripping, yet saying he was ready to go, we finished the 2 block jaunt over to Stopel, hopped the kerb and set our bikes up against a virgin oak tree. Dan shared with the group about the proposed ROI urban Farm orchard that had been submitted a few years back. We hope another uncovered and polished Jewel in our proposed emerald necklace. Yet another ROI park initiative expressed as a way to pay for the upkeep and improvements for the park, for the good of everybody.
We ditched on the trail further west and decided to head straight north through Oshea Field crossing over the great I-96 pedestrian bridge we arrived on the ‘Other’ side and stopped to ask Jeff what we should do next? The truth of it was that every time Jeff bent his knee the blood started up once again. The call was to turn right onto Fullerton and head everyone back east along the old Massey Ferguson industrial road. A few miles east we turned right onto Grand river and started slapping the peddles hard all the way back to Midtown. Try as we may we did not find one single bar or watering hole open the entire length down. Grand River is DEAD! 8 miles of waste land. Not at all like it used to be when the Olympia stood its ground.
We all decided to head on over to the Woodbridge Pub to enjoy some fresh Apps and some healthy discussion about People for Palmer Park. Jeff seemed caught in the middle of a good heartfelt sometimes heated discussion but given his gentle demeanor he really did not mine that Dan and I were hogging the show. From there it was back to MCB for one more than back on home to our families.
Bike Detroit! James Meyers bike explorer