Reasons that Rural Riding Rocks

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A tire on my sidewalk Monday when I got home from work.

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The tire Tuesday morning, before we got hammered with snow again today.

To everyone who commutes and bikes around in cities, I bow down to you. I simply do not know how you do it. Actually, living in the same rural area my whole life I cannot fathom how anyone could survive just living in a city. The longest stretch of time I “lived” in a city was two weeks. I barely made it.

Even though I have great respect for city cyclists, I just have to tell you that biking in the country is way better than the best biking perks a city has to offer.

I am a huge animal lover. So one of the reasons I think rural biking is best is because of all the animals I get to see on my commute. Every day while commuting I pass farms with:

Cows
Horses
Donkeys
Alpacas
Sheep
Goats
Chickens (careful not to run over the free range ones)
Guinea fowl
Pigs
Cats
Dogs (there is only one that chases me, he got hit by a car once while running after me, but his leg is better now and he is faster than ever)

Biking past livestock can actually be quite an experience. I was biking home one day when I saw a herd of 30ish cows grazing in a field next to the one they were supposed to be contained in. This did not surprise me since this farm had recently been dealing with escapees. I as went past I called out to the nearest bovine. “Hi there!” I said in a cheery tone of voice. (It is very rude to pass farm animals without a greeting.)
She stared at me transfixed for a moment and then bolted in the direction of the field she was supposed to be grazing in.
When the other cows noticed her running one by one they all started to run. If you have never seen dairy cows run before, you really should put it on your bucket list. It is quite a sight.
As cows were stampeding back to their pasture they climbed a small rise. Coming toward them on the other side of the rise was a herd of about twenty sheep, seeking out better grazing after their own escape.
When the sheep saw a herd of cows running toward them they turned tail and booked it back to their own pasture. I never got paid for my service as a herdbiker, but the reaction of those sheep was worth it.

I also see many wild animals.

deer
skunks
raccoons
coyotes
muskrats
beavers
opossums
porcupines
geese
ducks
great blue herons
owls
vultures
eagles
falcons
frogs
snakes
rabbits
mice
turtles (I have helped a couple of snapping turtles cross the road so if you ever lose a toe or a finger to a snapping turtle in NNY, blame me.)

It is amazing to see tons of different animals on my commute, it makes biking that much more enjoyable.

Just to warn you I will probably be doing more of these “rural riding” posts.

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