Mountain bikers make me hot

Mountain bikers are studs. They make me weak in the knees.

No, it’s not because of their tight shorts and muscular legs. What do you take me for, anyway? Trail Boy is a happily married man.

I’m all hot for mountain bikers because they’re building more trails in Indiana. How could you not love that?

In a post a few months ago, I wrote that a mountain biking club in Indy was planning to build a new, 10-mile trail at Fort Ben Harrison, the state park nearest my house.

I applauded them for this, as more trails are sorely needed around here. Build it, and I’ll run it. And ride it. Again and again.

But I really didn’t expect them to work so fast.

On Saturday morning, I went out to Fort Ben to run trails for 90 minutes with a few other runners.

As we trotted down the Fall Creek Trail, one of my sharp-eyed friends noticed a new, primitive trail that had been carved into a hillside, with small flags denoting the course.

The trail was still in the early stages of construction. But it was a thing of beauty, and had mountain biking written all over it. It went up and down the hillside in a roller-coaster fashion that is typical of mountain biking.

I could barely believe my eyes. It meant that in just a few more months, there would be a brand-new trail in this park.

Call me exciteable, but I was upbeat for hours, just thinking about it. If someone is out there, building a new trail that I can run, I am all for them.

Hell, I am hot just thinking about it.

Hey mountain bikers: I love you, man.

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But back to our run. It was a beautiful morning in the woods: crisp and cool, feeling more like October than August. And since I love fall weather, I was in hog heaven. Or Trail Boy nirvana.

There were five of us on the run. I set up the outing through the Indiana Trail Running web site, and was happy that a small group turned out to share the trails on a beautiful morning.

We finished up in 1:39:24, about five minutes longer than last weekend’s run. It was a fun outing. I’m sure it will be even more fun when I return in a few months and run the new bike trails. 

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On Sunday, I had another fun outing. And again, I have to thank the mountain bikers.

I took the family (Mrs. Trail Boy and the two boys) to Town Line Trail Park, home of the best mountain-bike trail in Indianapolis, and a blast to run, as well.

The boys and the missus took bikes out on the trail. I let them go ahead. I wanted to get in a run. 

I trotted along, keeping my eyes and ears open for mountain bikers. There were plenty of them on this beautiful day. Whenever one zoomed up from behind, I stepped off the singletrack for a moment and let them pass.

Every few minutes, I would catch sight of my brood, up ahead in the distance. The boys have ridden this trail a dozen times or more this summer, and can handle the challenging trail like experts.

But this was Mrs. Trail Boy’s first time. She was a bit nervous about all the hills, jumps, drops, twists and turns. After two miles, she had enough. She waited for me to catch up, then offered me her bike, and said she was going to turn back and walk to the parking lot.

Although I was psyched up for a trail run, I switched plans and hopped on the bike. Heck, there was a trail beneath me, either way.

The boys and I pedaled for another half hour or so, and had a great time speeding up and down hills and over obstacles, feeling the wind in our hair on this seven-mile loop.

The boys were more daring, speeding ahead, while I kept a hand on the brake on the steepest hills.

During our ride (and run), we saw dozens of other bikers enjoying the trail. Many of them were faster and more serious than us.

But without exception, they were friendly and always passed with a wave and a greeting, no matter how tough the trail. They are a credit to the great outdoors.

So trails on Saturday, trails on Sunday. It was that kind of a weekend.

Trail Boy can’t complain a bit.

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