As the days wind down towards the end of the year, and hints of snows to come are in the air, I am trying to get in a bicycle ride every day, for as long as is possible. It's getting cold, but still not so much that riding is a pain instead of a pleasure.
I took one of my favorite short rides yesterday on some dirt roads in Northampton, and brought with me a small saw.
Why a saw, you ask? Well, there are still spots around here where the damage from our crazy Hallowe'en snowstorm is still very visible, and one of the dirt roads I ride on is probably the last to get any attention from the cleanup crews. As such, there are a few places where fallen tree and branches are partially blocking the road. It's not impassable -- people in trucks and cars have made alternative routes around the blockages, or in some cases just driven over the thinner limbs and pushed them down into the dirt.
But it is still a mess, and not much fun to ride through, so I thought I might do a little bit of hand-sawing to clear away some of the more egregiously offending branches. As you can see -- if you look closely -- in these photographs, I made some headway (look for the freshly-cut branch ends).
The little saw worked so well that I decided to try something a little more difficult -- this large branch which had broken (but not detached) from a fairly tall tree and was leaning into the road.
I think it was about six inches or so in diameter, but it only took about five minutes to cut through. I did it cautiously, cutting from below as well as from above, as I wasn't sure how it would fall when I finished the cut. But it worked out pretty well, and I was able to drag the cut end out of the road, as you can see here in the "after" photo. -- PL