The wind dropped below a gazillion miles an hour during the night so I decided to get in a bike ride before work this morning. I’ve been wanting to test my full Trans Iowa light setup so a pre-dawn ride would serve double duty, and endorphin kick to go with my morning caffeine and a lighting test. I swung a leg over the Fargo at 5:25 AM and headed out into the gloom.

My light setup is sweet! I’ve got a Cateye Uno mounted on the PVC cross bar I put on the aero bars. I’ve got it pointed as far down the road as I can. I’ve got  a Princeton Eos Bike headlamp on my helmet which is amazingly bright for a non-rechargeable. It handles things closer up and gives me a great view of the cockpit. I should be set and if the burn times from the mfg’s are correct, I should be good on a single set of batteries. The beauty of this set up is, it’s very light and I can pick up replacement batteries at any convenience store.

I love being out in the early morning. The stars are beautiful and I like watching for that first hint of light in the east. I was pretty engrossed in both, down on the aero bars and cranking at a good clip when something large crashed in the ditch to my immediate left. I’m not sure if I came closer to soiling myself or crashing the bike but it was a toss up. Fortunately neither happened and of course when I turned around I couldn’t see anything. I can tell you the hairs on the back of my neck were at full attention and I was creeped out for awhile. The thought of an Iowa mountain lion loping down the road behind me seriously passed through my brain.

I don’t know what it was. The most probable explanation, a deer on the edge of the field got spooked as I went by. Or maybe it was a very large or very clumsy bunny. Or maybe I was just fast enough to drop that lion before the climb. I should go back and look for tracks…in the daylight!

My New Lights

  • Mileage: 14.5 miles, 14.4 mph ave.
  • Bike: Fargo w/ aero bars and computer mount
  • Weather: high 20’s, calm wind, clear
  • Route: Amboy loop, 95% gravel