The bike ride started out well. The gearing was perfect, the gloves and helmet fit, and the scene was ideal. It is hard to describe the experience. Sun cascading through the trees, great trails, the smell of blackberries penetrating any and everything, the list is endless. You must come and experience the Redwoods!
The ride started as one with God. No destinations, timetables, or thoughts about what was going to happen. I knew in advance that anything could happen! Would there be a deer sighting or two? Could there be any chance of finding rabbits, squirrels, snakes, or some other animal? What about hawks and eagles? Obviously, absolutely everything was within the range of possibilities.
As I headed out a abandoned rail track beckoned. I was sure the full suspension bike could handle the terrain. The initial ride confirmed my na?ve assumption. The scene lulled me into the ultimate sense of one with nature. Young redwoods lined the track with a postcard perfect river on my left and a steep hillside on the right. Incredible, awe inspiring, and silencing do not begin to describe the complacency and peace that permeated my heart and soul.
There was a reality that soon began to hit as I picked myself up slightly bruised and bleeding. The brambles had flesh tearing thorns and several of the ties framed deep pockets of space. The suspension on the bike, helpful at times, brought me to an abrupt halt as it combined with the deep hallows. And this was just the beginning.
As the track and I progressed I understood the setting of old when “the Jews were already out looking for him, asking around, ‘Where is that man?’” (John 7.11) The gullies, poison oak, and thistle ambushed me again and again without warning. What seemed to be an easy ride wasn’t, yet even with the terrain I found myself understanding and reveling in real living. We live in a harsh world surrounded by beauty. Today I am going to see it all. The invitation is open; come along for the ride.
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