The snow began while I was eating lunch at El Toro yesterday. By the time I left work a few inches of snow had accumulated on the ground and it made for some difficult bicycling on the way home. I bided my time until about 10:30 pm or so, at which point I could wait any longer. I had to go skiing.
I changed clothes, grabbed my skis, and walked 2 blocks to the Arboretum. I was pleasantly surprised to find a fresh set of ski tracks in the snow–I was not the only person in Urbana with this idea. About half way around the 1.5 mile loop I saw the other skier. He was heading the opposite direction at a pretty good clip. I found out today the mystery skier was none other than Gary Cziko, who I know from Champaign County Bikes. Apparently, he’s quite the cross country skier.
3/4 of the way around the loop I went up the (artificial, of course) hill. This hill is short, steep, and one of only two places in Urbana to sled. So, of course, at 11 pm it was packed with people. I worked my way up to the top (it seemed to be mostly kids sledding, but I did see several fresh, empty beer bottles), then back down the other side to complete my loop. The snow was still falling at this point, so by the time I reached my initial tracks they were pretty well covered up by fresh snowfall.
This morning we awoke to a fresh 6-8″ of snow which needed to be shoveled off the driveway and sidewalk. Melissa & I made short, sweaty work of it.
The bike ride to work went slowly, as the roads had a lot of mushy snow (which is hard to navigate through on a bike). Fortunately, with the local schools cancelled and many people staying home from work, the roads were not at all busy. On the way home the road conditions were considerably better, but still not great.
Tonight more skiing is on the agenda, then tomorrow is the Illini Chill bike ride in St. Joe. That should make for some good outdoor fun.