Saturday, March 20, 2010

Meramac River 30 Miler

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Well, we finally got in a significant run down the river Friday. Started at Pacific across from the prison and went down to Greentree Park, at the base of the hill on Marshall road. I was a bit concerned that I wouldn't have enough time to finish the 30 miler that Ploch had planned for the day, for good reason. Geezer was in my 14 foot Wilderness Pungo 140, a great Meramac River boat, but it was paddle driven vs. our 16 foot Hobie Adventure pedal drives. There was virtually no current past the confluence of the Big River and Meramac. Back water was creeping in to heavy flow from the West, making for a very long day. We got on the water at 12:20 and I was to be home by 4:30 to take my wife out for dinner with her best friend, kind of an anniversary thing. I think we got in a little after 5:00 and I was in big trouble, still needing to car the boat, drive home, take a shower and be at Sugo's by 5:30, didn't happen. Youch.

I kind of felt sorry for the old Geezer. He would have been able to hang had he had pedal drive like Ploch (check out his take there) and I. He made it to Sherman Beach, a respectable day, a spot where I thought it was down hill from, until the water kept getting dead, dead and more dead. It was like a lake the last 10 miles, almost backflow, and I was a tad fatigued do to pushing the bigger gear of the turbo fins. The boats come with a regular fin and a performance kit. The performance kit has larger (18 inch) fins underneath so they are harder to push, more resistance. I am hoping this stuff increases my power on the bike. Can't see how that wouldn't help.

We did see some bald eagles while out there this time. You can always tell when they are around because the Crow's are mighty pissed off. They build these huge nests probably 5-6 feet across, maybe 10 foot deep. They pretty much rule the area and fly at incredible speeds, up to 100 mph on dives. There was one large eagle, past Castlewood towards the bridge at 141 that must have had a 6 foot wingspan. These birds (males) can weigh as much as 10 pounds.

Coming past Castlewood was pretty cool. Seeing the mountain bikers enjoying dry trails for a short time. At one point a bunch of kids started throwing rocks at us. Wtf? I told Ploch to go over there and kick some "A" but he looked tired and was indeed in lycra and shaved legs. I can't figure out how anyone can try and take on an athlete while they are working hard. I mean, our heart rates are up, we are pretty much in pain from the long haul, a little cranky anyway, why would somebody try and launch on us. The odds of them coming out ahead are nill. We let it go, because at this point, I still thought I had a chance to get to the dinner.

I was hurtin coming past 141 and Ploch said it was just a mile and a half further. I told him to shut up and that I would slice him if he talked to me again. The last mile was more than a mile and coming past the Chrystler plant, he started putting the hammer down and finished a good 300 yards ahead. I will play the age card (here). I did pull away from he and the geezer coming up to Allenton for several miles, I think I had a half mile on them for a bit, but Ploch came back, looking like he was fresh.

It was epic, regardless. Though I screwed up the plans with Janie, we went and had a nice dinner at Big Bear Grill out on Wildwood, the Chicken Spedini? Man, that was good.


herekittykitty said...

Was it the angry crows I heard in the background, or you?

CockPuncher said...

Ralph, check out episode 8 from The Season. Paul Kuthe, a St. Louis native now working in Portland for my former employer Alder Creek Kayak Supply. Talk about some amazing paddling!