Scenes from the Rail Trail: July 16, 2014

It was a glorious day in central PA yesterday; there was no real summer heat (high of 79? WHAT?) and the humidity was present, but bearable thanks to the lower temperature. When I woke up yesterday morning my first thought was, I am SO riding my bike to work today.

Even before I longed for coffee, that’s what I thought, so you know it was important.

Before too long I packed up my lunch and my change of clothes (because who wants to work in sweaty bike clothes?) and pedaled myself off to the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail and onward to work. It looked a little something like this.

I call this one "The Commute". Yes, that is a coffee cup at the handlebars.

I call this one “The Commute”. Yes, that is a coffee cup at the handlebars.

The rail trail is currently in high-summer foliage, so most of it is full-on lush greenness.

Sure, I'll get to work. Soon as I make my way through this time portal.

Sure, I’ll get to work. Soon as I make my way through this time portal.

And the birds were keeping it kind of low-key.  I heard the birds a-plenty, but didn’t see them. I did, however, get a visit from an inquisitive groundhog.

Which is my good side, he seemed to say. Sadly, I thought...it's neither. Because they're really not cute. But thanks for playing, Mr. Groundhog!

Which is my good side?–he seemed to say. Sadly, I thought…it’s neither. Because they’re really not cute creatures. But thanks for dropping by, Mr. Groundhog!

I saw some funky orange fungus doing its thing on a decomposing tree along the trail side. I believe this is Pycnoporous cinnabarinus.

Eventually, this fallen tree won't stand a chance.

Eventually down the road as rot happens, this fallen tree won’t stand a chance against a mighty tree fungus.

A few things: 1) Don’t eat it. 2) I’m happy to learn if I’m wrong. 3) Say “Pycnoporus cinnabarinus” three times, fast.

It's even coming out the top.

It’s even coming out the top.

Bet you can’t.

Anyway.

There were delicate little wildflowers all over the place.

Is this some kind of clover? I have no idea.

Is this some kind of clover? I have no idea.

Some flowers in the process of pollination.

Or a little somethin' somethin'.

Or a little somethin’ somethin’.

Some wild raspberries.

Delish!

Delish!

And a farm that’s been plucked straight out of a movie set.

Seriously? Are you frigging kidding me?

Seriously? Are you frigging kidding me?

Here’s a shot looking over one of the out-buildings of the farm. Notice the awesome sky.

I have no idea what this building is for. But it looks great.

I have no idea what this building is for. But it looks great.

And the side of part of the farmhouse. Complete with wagon wheel.

Wagon. Wheel. Can it get any more rustic?

Wagon. Wheel. Can it get any more rustic?

Location scouts, call me.

All in all, it was a surreally pretty day out on the BVRT.

Yup. Ain't no doubt about that.

Yup. Ain’t no doubt about that.

And I’m glad to say I took advantage of it.

See you on the trail!

Scenes from the Rail Trail: April 2, 2014

Yesterday was the first day I was able to bike-commute this season (for the record, yours truly ain’t no cold-weather biker) and all I have to say is…YAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!  I enjoyed my ride to work (and home) so much I even dreamed happy dreams of it when I went to bed last night. That is a totally true story.

The hardest part for me in my quest to get to work along the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail is in the actual moving forward. Not because I have problems riding my bike but rather, because it is so damn pretty. I have a hard time not hopping off my bike every ten feet to take another picture and look at another gorgeous eyeload full of central PA scenery. Everything was fresh and muddily, wetly new. Some flowers were out, and some bushes and such were still in their gray and bare winter tatters, with the occasional bud peeking out from under things. With that in mind, less talky! More looky! Welcome to Scenes from the Rail Trail–2014!

This guy was there to greet me almost as soon as I got on the trail. Could be vaguely creepy…cue the spooky organ music in my head!

Welcome. Mwah ha ha ha ha!

Welcome. Mwah ha ha ha ha!

How about a little winter aconite (or eranthis, if you prefer?) to brighten up your early spring ride?

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Hey there, one of the first blossoms of spring. Lookin’ good!

Meanwhile, down the road a piece…

Did they photoshop their farm into the landscape just to make sure it looked photogenically perfect, before building?

Did they photoshop their farm into the landscape just to make sure it looked photogenically perfect, before building?

See what I mean about wanting to stop every ten feet? I’m telling you, this is with considerable “I have to get to work” restraint exercised.

Soon-to-be parents get ready with a snug new mud nest.

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Welcome home, kid.

While fences do make good neighbors, they also make for interesting shadows when the light is right.

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I’m not really sure why this stretch of fence is here, except to provide for fun photo ops. Thanks, random fence builder people!

Thanks to everyone who responded to a previous post (and on Facebook), I now know that this is an exploded milkweed pod. Which looks golden and awesome, glinting in the morning sun.

Is that Medusa's face I see..?  Whew! Nope, just the weird milkweed husk.

Is that Medusa’s face I see..? Whew! Nope, just the weird milkweed husk.

And finally…we begin with birds, we end with birds. Robin Redbreast is ready for his closeup, Mr. DeMille.

Damn paparazzi.

Damn paparazzi.

So yay! A return to warmer weather and fun on the Trail! Can’t wait to see what else there is to see there.

Scenes from the Rail Trail: Sept. 25 2013

We try to keep things groovy here in our lovely little ‘burg.  We have a great single-screen, lovingly restored, art deco movie house and the local filmmakers who have used said movie house (pre-restoration) as a set in their film.  We have top-notch jazz.  We have a highly competitive liberal arts university which brings us all manner of academics, either as professors or guest speakers.  This often makes for surprisingly interesting conversations when you’re out on the town.  And we have the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail.

Thanks to a joint effort between the Lewisburg Area Recreation Authority (LARA), Union County, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Federal Highway Department, a long-unused railway line was acquired, the rails were repurposed and the ground was paved and/or laid out with packed gravel.  The rail trail parallels Route 45, which is our major east-west corridor, and is a 9.2 mile, mostly flat-ish path through farmland and rolling hills.

It’s purty.

And, the business I’ve started doing a part time writing gig at is just off the trail.

That’s right.  I’ve become the granola girl who bicycle-commutes to work.

I’m sure that soon I’ll start talking more about riding, and about how I’ve been giving an exorbitant amount of thought lately to the change I’ve experienced in my relationship to fitness (has it EVER, and sometimes I feel like I hardly know myself any more), but in this particular blog today?

I just want to talk about how the rail trail is super-purty.

Here’s some shots from my commute.  Here’s what I got to look at yesterday, going to and from my job.

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And yes, biking through all that bucolic splendor has aggravated fall allergies I never even knew I had.  But.  This is why Claritin was given unto the world.  I ride again tomorrow, and I’m totally psyched!

I dig my life.

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