Sunday Stills: #Sports and #Hobbies

August Kayaking with Friends

Hello October! As spring ramps up in the Southern Hemisphere, I’m sure many folks can’t wait to get back to their favorite outdoor activities and hobbies. Here in the cold north, most of our outdoor sports and pastimes are ending or adjusting as the changing weather and cooler temps of Autumn close in.

A hobby a day keeps the doldrums away.

Phyllis McGinley
Fallen reflected leaves
In the gutter but still beautiful

Hiking, biking and walking are still doable in Northeastern Washington with cool sunny days, but colder nights dictate warmer clothes. My last day on the bike was in Sacramento in November 2020 when I visited the American River Bike Trail for the last time.

Autumn Bike Ride American River Bike Trail

Hiking

Last week, my good friend and her fiancé visited here from Sacramento. We hiked around the area that included The Bowl and Pitcher and our local trails.

Make a commitment to having fun. See your best friends and make time for your hobbies and passions.

Robert Holden

Shopping/ Exploring

We visited GreenBluff, a farm area featuring over 60 local growers, wineries, breweries and other venues. Autumn is a great time to visit and purchase famous Washington apples while getting in the groove for harvest-themed activities and food, like pumpkin donuts and sparkling mead. Did I mention shopping is a legit hobby?

Kayaking

Last weekend while outdoor temperatures were still in the upper 70’s and low 80s (25-27 C), lines of vehicles drove down the main highway to get their last warm days of kayaking in. Although I did not get out on the water this time, I managed a few trips over the summer.

Kayaking on Little Spokane RiverAugust Kayaking Little Spokane River
The second image is the Painnt App Filter
August Kayaking with Friends
Kayaking with Friends
Kayaking Watson Lake, Prescott, AZ
Kayak Trio on Watson Lake, Prescott, AZ

More watercraft were out enjoying the late summer weather.

Other Hobbies

While many of us think about what defines a hobby, our blog and the photography that goes alongside the blog are year-round hobbies that engage us in many ways. From these, we get creative with poetry, writing, visual art and other fine arts that keep the creative juices flowing.

Photography

Of course, you know I’m all about photography. With mobile devices, snapping a pic is easy and provides hours of fun. Creating the blog signatures is also part of the fun!

I spent last week leaf-chasing. With my dogs leashed to my left arm and phone in my right hand, I found beautiful Autumn scenes within my own neighborhood and beyond.

Red Maple Close-Up
Bright Red Maple Close-Up

Many photographers experiment with filters, apps, and other creative measures to enhance their photos. I put some of my existing images through a mobile app called Painnt. Hope you enjoyed them throughout this post.

Learning a New Language

As of today, I have logged 673 days in a row learning German on Duolingo. I actually began in August 2019 but managed to accidentally skip a day. The streak before that was 50. You’d think with all these days logged I would know more. But given a decent context, I can understand some spoken words and read a variety of words. I can also correct some of my hubby’s German to a small extent, with his excuse being that I’m learning high German, LOL. Not bad for him speaking the language since birth. He also speaks Spanish fluently. I’m just relieved that I can speak English fluently 😉

Wildlife Watching

My love of the outdoors involves seeing as much wildlife as possible. So far in the Spokane/Nine Mile Falls area, I’ve seen a few bald eagles, two moose (while kayaking), heard the bugle cry of an elk late one night, and adorable flocks of quail. We see white-tailed and mule deer almost daily.

Flock of Quail
Quail family from 75 yards away

Volunteering

Volunteering is a wonderful hobby that benefits both the giver and the receiver. In our new community I have had several opportunities to volunteer. Over the summer, our church operated a free weekly day camp at a nearby school. My job was to help prepare 180 sack lunches every Wednesday. Two of the days were hot dog BBQs on site. This month, at our local nursery/farm (down the street!), we are volunteering each weekend as they host their annual Harvest Festival. Saturday was our first day and it was a blast, meeting neighbors, and just being out in the Autumn air. We are going to get some free trees for our efforts!

Yay for Photo Challenges!

Today I’m sharing this post for several other photo challenges including Becky B’s October Squares, where past meets present. In many of these images, I present “bright, trees, blue, lines, perspective, and time.”

Squares

Also, JohnBo’s CellPic Sunday, Cee’s Flower of the Day, Jude’s Life in Color, Jo’s Monday Walk, and Dawn’s Festival of Leaves

To see more of my images and other news, consider following Terri on Social Media by clicking the icons:

Last Week’s Linkers

Sunday Stills is a wonderful community of bloggers and photographers who desire to connect with one another. Below are the last week’s links from 29 bloggers who shared their favorite Autumn and Spring photos.

Bushboy’s World

Cath’s Camera

Cats and Trails and Garden Tales

Cee’s Photo Challenges

Deb’s World

Denyse Whelan Blogs

Easin’ Along Image shared in comments

Equipoise Life

Frost on the Moose Dung

Graham’s Island

Heaven’s Sunshine

Hugh’s Views and News Image in Comments

Jacquie Biggar Author

Kamerapromenader

Leya

Loving Life

Light Words

Light Write Life

Now At Home

Photos By Jez

Stevie Turner

NEW The Sandy Chronicles

NEW TBL

This is Another Story

Travels and Trifles

Travel With Me

Woolly Muses

Working on Exploring

A Young Retirement

It is in his pleasure that a man really lives; it is from his leisure that he constructs the true fabric of self.

Agnes Repplier
Burnt or Blood Orange Pallet

I hope to see you next week for the Monthly Color Challenge! October is all about Burnt or Blood Orange with shades in between! Have a great week.

Please bear with me Sunday as I am away from the internet for a few hours while we volunteer for a local Harvest Festival, as I mentioned earlier. I will share about that next week!

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Leisurely Thursdays: Winter Cycling Tips

Winter Cycling Safety. Reflective, bright clothing.

As winter draws near in the Northern Hemisphere, avid cyclists and even recreational bicyclists still enjoy their rides, whether for fitness, fun, or transportation. For my Leisurely Thursday post, I share tips to help you with your fall and winter cycling experience. In temperate climates like California or Florida, where cycling can be enjoyed almost year round, fall and winter can still bring surprises to your ride.Cyclists ride in twilight

Time Changes and Darkness

Be mindful of the time of day you ride your bike. As winter sets in, there is a lot less daylight. Plan your ride for daylight hours when possible. Motorists have enough trouble seeing cyclists in broad daylight, let alone in dawn or dusk hours. Get a good headlight and use it when the sun is low in the sky. You need a flashing red tail-light so others can see you. If you commute and ride at night, take extra care and use as much light as possible.

Darkness may also bring on undesirable loiterers. Urban bike trails can be places where homeless build their camps. Although law enforcement tries to minimize and mitigate this practice, campers and loiterers are more prolific especially in temperate geographical areas where winters are not as harsh. If you see suspicious activity, quickly ride past and avoid stopping. Even in daylight hours, be mindful of where you stop for a break. Assaults happen to both women and men.

My hubby recently experienced a flat tire near dusk. Even with his tire kit, it still took him longer than expected and darkness was upon him before his ride was done. He went out the next day and bought the headlight!

Weather

Fall and early winter can be great times for riding long distances because of the cooler air. While it may feel great to ride extra miles in 50 degree temps, the urge to drink water will lessen due to the cold. Force yourself to drink more water, even if you do not feel thirsty. Our area experiences the dry north winds which feel cool, but are very dehydrating. Also, bring food for a long ride. In cold air, you will burn more calories.

Fall and winter weather can be capricious and unsettled. If you plan a long ride, check the local weather for changes. What may start out as a warm sunny day can end in stormy, rainy weather.

Changes in seasons and weather can also add more debris on the roads and trails. Autumn will find leaves, nuts, and other tree-fall that can be dangerous when ridden over. If you ride on urban trails, be mindful of rodents that are hoarding nuts for their hibernation and winter nap. Squirrels are known to dart out suddenly onto roads and trails and can cause accidents to unsuspecting cyclists. Other animals may be seen on the roads and trails, like deer, waterfowl and other creatures foraging for food.

In late fall and winter, ice and snow can be issues. Watch for black ice on roads and urban trails and keep your eyes on the road. It is easy to get distracted while riding and fiddling with your phone, and therefore miss seeing the acorn or ice patch that takes you down.

More road debris can flatten a tire quickly, so be sure to pack your tire change kit, even if it is just a short leisurely ride. Pack two tubes just to be safe.

Clothing and Gear

Layer your clothing so that if you feel warm, you can change, then add it when you feel cold again. If your arms and legs are bare, use sunscreen, even on a cool, cloudy day. UVA and UVB rays still penetrate cloud layers and can cause sunburn. Lotion helps with windburn as well.

Wear bright, reflective clothing to be more easily seen by motorists. This can be added as a top layer over winter garb. Protect your mobile phone in plastic or something to protect it from moisture. Even if you wear your phone next to your body, wrap it, so perspiration doesn’t destroy it.

Winter Cycling Safety. Reflective, bright clothing.Many retail stores sell great winter cycling clothing. I’ve seen lots of riders add arm and leg warmers, helmet covers and toe warmers to their normal gear to help fend off the cold. Since my hubby is bald on top, he wears a bandana under his bike helmet to keep his head warm. Wearing a headband under your helmet also keeps your ears warm. Wearing gloves is also recommended to keep your hands warm and responsive.

I like to wear sunglasses when I ride, even on cloudy days, to protect  my eyes from wind, rain, grit and bugs. The cold air always makes my eyes tear, so I also carry a small handkerchief with me. Clear lenses are also available from your retailer.

Before you head out on your winter cycling experience, check with your local bike retail store and get tips from the pros. And of course, have your bicycle checked thoroughly and tuned up if necessary. Many cyclists change their tires to a more robust tread. Add a mudguard to prevent water and mud from hitting your backside and riders directly behind you.

Depending upon where you live (ride), your bike can get very dirty from mud, debris and salt from the road. When your ride is done, clean the chains, brakes, and tires as soon as possible.

If you absolutely cannot go out on your bike, at least go to the gym and ride the stationary bike as a LAST resort!

For those in the Southern Hemisphere who are experiencing spring and soon, summer, please read this post…15 Summer Cycling Safety Tips.

For more cycling tips, check out this blog, Fit is a Feminist Issue, specifically Proper Bike Fit and Two Bike Cultures.

Cycling is a wonderful way to exercise and stay fit even in cold weather. Challenge yourself to ride and use these tips to help you! Do you cycle in the fall and winter months? Tell me about it!

15 Summer Cycling Safety Tips

Summer-Cycling-Safety

Summer-Cycling-Safety

Summer is upon us and outdoor leisure activities abound! What is better than a bike ride on a beautiful summer day?

Despite the heat and humidity, we still want to ride for fitness and leisure. Don’t let this stop you, but take some time to read through these summer cycling safety tips that will take you through the hot summer months.

General Advice:
Plan ahead and check for weather advisories. Don’t overdo if it will be extremely hot and/or humid, or if the air quality is projected to be poor.

Use protection! Be sure to wear your helmet.Yes, it can be hot, but bike helmets are cool, light, and necessary! Wear appropriate clothing with SPF and wicking material to keep cool and dry. Wear sunscreen on exposed skin.

Stay hydrated. Bring extra water for a longer ride. If you have a hydration pack, this is a good time to use it.

Observe the rules of the road for extra safety. There will be a variety of levels of riders on the roads, including children, and many beginning riders do not always understand how to ride correctly on streets and bike trails.

Give your bicycle a good once-over, especially if you haven’t ridden your bike in a while. Check the frame, lights, reflectors, tires, seat and repair anything before you venture out.

Keep your mobile phone and flat repair kit handy.

Join riding groups if you do not want to ride alone. Look for groups through Facebook, Meet-ups, and through local leisure organizations. Bicycle shops and retailers often have bulletin boards with groups looking to add new riders.

While Riding On the Streets:

Be seen. Wear bright colors. If you are riding on the streets, the bright sun and glare from car windows can make cyclists difficult to see.

To beat the heat, many cyclists ride in the early morning hours or later in the evening. Riding during these times may expose you to more street traffic. These times of day, when the sun is lower in the sky, you are harder to see, so take extra precautions when riding on streets.

Use designated bike lanes when possible but remain aware of traffic.

On Urban Bike Trails:

There are more commuters. Depending on time of day, there may be more riders on the trails, as the good weather makes it desirable to ride to work.

Watch for our wild, four-legged and feathered friends. Deer, squirrels and water fowl may have young that can dart out suddenly onto the trail. If you are riding in the early mornings and evenings, you are more likely to see animals near the trails.

More people are using the trails for jogging, walking, hiking and walking dogs. Trail-ExerciseMore strollers are out, too, and these can take up space in bike lanes. Proceed with extra caution around pedestrians in these circumstances, and keep your speeds low.

Keep a close eye on loiterers. If someone looks suspicious, ride quickly past them. Sadly, assaults on urban bike trails are more common that one would think. Avoid stopping in remote areas along the trails unless there is an emergency. Even men can be victims of assault.

Bicycling is a wonderful activity, whether riding for leisure, to work, or for fitness. Play is safe and keep on riding! For more information on cycling, here are some general tips you may find helpful.


I am linking this post to Debbie In Shape and Midlife Luv midlifeluvbadgeTip-Tuesday-Link-Party-Debbie-in-Shape-weekly-light-small

Spring Cycling

Recumbent bike

Recumbent bike
Cyclists zoom by

Spring has sprung in the northern hemisphere and it came in with cool mornings and warm afternoons. Spring also brought tree pollen which aggravates my allergies. With hankie at the ready, and the American River Bike Trail calling my name, I set out for a one-hour morning ride.

I use the app, Map My Ride, which records my workout. I am always amazed at the stats, like how many miles I ride, how many calories I burn, my speed, and it provides a map of the ride. At the end of my ride, I had logged 15 miles, averaged 13.5 mph, and burned 1077 calories!

The American River Bike Trail (a.k.a. the Jedediah Smith Memorial Trail) hugs the banks of the American River as it flows through riparian habitat preserved by the American River Parkway. The trail runs for 32 miles between Discovery Park in Old Sacramento and Folsom Lake’s southwestern banks at Beal’s Point.

The two-lane trail is completely paved, with mile markers, trail-side maps, water fountains, restrooms and telephones along the way. There are also plenty of places to stop to eat, rest or enjoy the scenery. Most of the trail is shaded and level, although the route does traverse some rolling terrain. Along the way you’ll pass through several parks and swimming areas, as well as through the suburban enclaves of Sacramento.

About 2 miles of the trail is on-road in a designated bike lane. In addition, the popular trail is shared by many different users, including in-line skaters and equestrians.”

As I rode the first 30 minutes, I made some mental notes of the spots I wanted to photograph on the ride back. You can see by the photos what a glorious morning it was. As I started out, it felt like I was the only one on the trail. Gradually, other cyclists and walkers joined me on the trail. When I normally ride on weekends, there is a lot of company, so it was refreshing to ride on this weekday morning with fewer people.

One of my favorite sights was seeing a large group of seniors riding along in a large group. (See the top photo). I assumed it was an organized riding club.

Because the bike trail is a sanctuary for wildlife, there is a large variety of birds, including snowy egret, seagulls on the river, wild turkeys, geese and ducks. Squirrels cavort everywhere (nearly ran one down) and wary deer suddenly appear from behind trees, then go back to grazing. On one trip I saw a coyote bounding off into the woods!

I am fortunate I live so close to this bike trail, and it is such a thrill to get out and ride. I hope you get the chance to get out and exercise on this spring weekend.

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