Last night there was a terrific rainstorm up and down the East Coast. The wind was howling, the rain was coming down in torrents, and I thought that today would be a washout for riding. Due to the fact that I was either on call, in the hospital, or in the office for the past 14 days, I was looking at today as kind of a free day off, and had planned a vineyard ride on the North Fork of Long Island. That was not to happen. A break in the storm gave me an opportunity to do something that I love to do...ride in the mud. Since I took up cyclocross in 2002, I have appreciated the subtleties of cycling in the goo, paste, peanut butter,slime, and grime of my favorite trails after a good rain. Although I did not race cyclocross last season due to an injury, a sloppy day on the trail is still well appreciated, and today ranks up there with the best of them.
An expected additional benefit at this time of year is the fact that Spring is springing. The new flowers and greenery that adorn the landscape contrast with the dark gritty reality of the trail . Ritchey Speedmax cyclocross tires were perfect for the conditions, and although it did spritz from time to time, my Showers Pass Elite 2.0 cycling jacket kept me cozy and dry.