Sunday, August 2, 2009

Water crossing

Western Massachusetts has seen an unusual amount of rain this summer, and a few days ago we had yet another big storm. I went out the next day for a bicycle ride, down Old Springfield Road, and ran into this:

The Connecticut River, which you can't see in this photo but which is off to the left of this scene by a few dozen feet, had risen enough so that it flooded this portion of the normally dry road... resulting in this stretch of water I'd estimate as being about 150 feet long. I debated whether or not I should try to ride through it, but decided against it for a couple of reasons -- one, I was going for a motorcycle ride later and didn't want to get my shoes soaked, and two, I really didn't know how deep it was out in the middle of this thing. What you may not be able to see further ahead -- about two thirds of the way across this flooded area -- is a pretty strong current of water flowing from left to right. I was a bit concerned that I might get out there and end up soaking a lot more than my shoes. So I passed on this little adventure.

But it reminded me of a similar occurrence from a few years back, when I was riding one of my recumbent bicycles on this same road but on a stretch about another half mile on. The river had at that time risen and flooded parts of the road... but that day I was wearing my water sandals, and decided to go for it. I was also carrying my camera in my left hand (I do most of my shifting on the bicycle with my right) and took the following video of my journey across the waters. I can't say exactly how deep it was, but at one point you will hear me say something like "It feels nice on my feet" -- referring to the water, in which, at that point, while pedaling, my feet were submerged.

I've tried this kind of thing a few times, and it doesn't always work as well as it did here -- I remember one time I got halfway across and a floating stick jammed itself in my chain, derailing it and stranding me in the deepest part, from which I had to push the bike to dry land to fix the chain.

But this time, it went smoothly, and was a lot of fun. And I didn't drop the camera in the water. -- PL


InfiniteStudent said...

Now that's just AWESOME!! You look like a little kid having fun! I love it!

Splinter's Iroonna said...

Not dropping the camera into the water is a definite plus.

Brookslyn said...

Ah yes! Those flooded streets. Another good place, albeit slightly busy with cars, is the border between Amherst and Hadley on W Pomeroy Lane and Moody Bridge Road. There used to be a stream around that area with a big dip between the residential areas on W Pomeroy and the large farm in Hadley. Ah, the memories of riding to the Hampshire Mall in the summer time.

Tyrgermanic said...

haha youre crazy man
laughing while mad biking through a flash-swamp
i was expecting the ground to drop in any second.
cool shit

Becky said...

Neat! Looks like you had alot of fun! :) And I am very impressed you didn't drop the camera! If it had been me, it wouldn't have lasted five seconds! *laughs*