Sunday, July 3, 2011

Hey Lynn Woods! You've Been Cartographicalified. Yeah It's Kind Of A Word, Look It Up.

I needed a map of the trails at Lynn Woods. How to get that map was the question? Download it from interwebs? Yeah, you would say that you couch jockey. No, the answer is a five hour epic Sunday spent riding, or trying to ride, as many trails as possible.

This is the map I've been working from for the past four months:

It was given to me by an eighteen month old kid. It sucks. The trail markings are highly inaccurate, the handwriting is sloppy, and come to think of it that kid probably doesn't even work for the parks department. Evidently anyone can scribble on a piece of paper and say "Lynn Woods, dadoo!"
So it's time to take things into my own hands. Step one, admit you have a problem. I do. My sense of direction is akin to your sister's sense of what's appropriate for a young lady after the prom. I have no ability to figure out where I am unless there is a river to one side, a mountain range on the other and a huge smoke cloud to the north. I call it New Mexico Directional Dysfunction. If you spend ten years being guided by the three landmarks of water, rock, and fire what happens when you find yourself in the middle of a New England forest? If my experience is at all telling, you pee your chamois a little bit, see mountain lions everywhere, and then thank god you're not in New Mexico.

Step two is fixing your problem. Then you're done. Just two steps. As my grandfather once complained to me, "Twelve steps to fix your problem?! Christ on a crutch Todd, I don't take twelve steps to get the mail." Which is funny because my name is Jamie. And he lost a leg in the war. And he was drunk when he said it. (Also, if a Military Panel of Inquiry can be believed, he was drunk when he lost the leg.) Sooooooo, where was I?

Ah yes step two. Paper . . . tape . . . markers . . . VOILA!!!!!

I put in the major fireroads from memory. They were not correct. But they were waterproof with the tape so in your face! Time to get going.

I started with the stuff I knew like climbing up to Stone Tower and the Loop Road. That way I could bail on the project early and go home if I didn't have the legs for it. Unfortunately, I had the legs and then some. Three hours went by pretty quick despite one flat fix-a-roo and a couple trips back to the car to load back up on water and CLIF Bar stuff. It was fun just zipping around and finding new trails. I had my trusty green Sharpie to mark the trails I could ride and my not-so-trusty orange Sharpie to mark the trails I couldn't ride.

Lynn Woods has a lot of trails I hadn't been on and it was exciting to find new stuff. I used my ever expanding map to take breaks from exploring and go back to loops which had climbing to do some intervals. Then off to channel my inner Amerigo Vespucci. There were certainly times when I got lost and the map didn't synch up but those times were few and far between.

(Also, I've run out of notches to tighten my watch band. If we have any ladies with umm, mannish arms, I'd be willing to trade!)

Around the five hour mark I called it a day and headed home. I hadn't seen much wildlife all day but got lucky riding back to the car. I saw both a snake (black with yellow stripes) and the somewhat rare Grey Bearded New England Chipmunk. The chipmunk was trying to be stealthy (or was it coy) and hide under some leaves but I enlarged the photo when I got home for a clear shot of the little cutey.

1 comment:

  1. Your grandfather sounds like you - just a little older... Fantastic read J-Rock, keep on keepin' on.