Monday, January 25, 2016

dont ride over the alligator

The cold cooler is weather is finally here so we are enjoying as much time outdoors as possible. This weekend we had the coldest weather this year so far, while the northern part of the country got slammed by a blizzard our temps dropped into the 40's. As soon as the girls heard that they chose to go bike riding. Yes, they really are mad.

Out favourite place and go to spot for a long ride in the cold weather is Shark Valley We loaded up the bikes and headed west 30 miles.

loaded up and ready.
Having a rack on the car loaded with bikes is possibly the only thing I can think of that will make me drive slowly, by slowly I mean with the speed limit. I absolutely hate it. I have a fabulous rack, it's a Saris, and perfectly sturdy and safe but I hate it.  Once we arrived at our destination we noticed that the world and his brother had also had the same idea. The parking lots were all full so we had to park out on the main road about a mile from the entrance!! No worries, we biked in. When I went to pay and the lady was asking for small bills, I happened to have a few so I offered to sell them to her, she graciously accepted and waived my fee. How nice.

It was a glorious weather day. (Rosie has a new bike)
and we were off, 15 miles lay ahead but we were ready.
She's ready.
so many beautiful birds
This Anhinga is warming himself 
as is this one
big person
at the 7 mile mark is this observation tower. we climbed to the top and observed
it was pretty cold up there
sunny and cold
3 amigos
the water in the Everglades is crystal clear
Hello. There were a few alligators on the roadway but less than I expected to see. I thought they would be sunning themselves due to the cold. 
Not a cloud, anywhere.
one of our eleventy billion breaks.
even though it was cold, 52 degrees they wanted to end the day with ice cream
It's important to wear a helmet when eating ice cream.
Both girls did really well. Rosie needed a few breaks, her bike doesn't have gears so she just pedals like mad, non stop. Her bike is new, an early birthday pressie since her other one was just way to little. This was the maiden voyage, possibly not too smart as any kinks were going to be noticed in the middle of a long ride and not much could be done there. Her seat was so hard that her bum hurt so Lily took the padded cover off of hers but that left her in sorry shape. The final solution was I rode the last few miles on Lilys bike on a seat that was like a rock and Lily rode my Cadillac. My bike is amazing, it weighs less than Rosies and rides like a dream, now I don't think I'll get Lily back on hers again! Next stop is the bike shop for new bike seats for both of them, they make or break a ride.

They both got new helmets and they are fabulous. Helmets here make you so sweaty but these are really lightweight and very well ventilated. They have both complained constantly in the past about wearing them but neither one said a word yesterday, being that we live in Flori-DUH bike helmets are required by law but motorcycle helmets are not! We have idiots making our laws.

As for the gators, they don't bother you and of course you leave WELL alone. There was a huge one at one point, clear across the road, we were alone and I was a little jumpy about passing it but we had no choice, we could turnabout and bike back on ourselves 12 miles or pass this gator and go forward 3. I sent Ro first and just told her to ride like the wind, Lily did the same and I yelled later gator and went last. He didn't flinch.

It was a gorgeous day and I hope we get another chance to do it again this year.


  1. Oh that looks like so much fun......definitely have to upgrade the bike seats if you are riding that far!

  2. Looks like lots of fun, but no way where those alligators were so damn close. Thanks for sharing.

  3. What an awesome ride! I used to love those rare cool Florida days. We would bundle up in 60 degree weather - LOL! The gators do freak me out though!