I feel like more here than anywhere we're trying to engage the place, the outlets, the restaurants, the streets, not just in cashing bills here and there but being immersed in what the places here offer, the alley murals, the beer gardens and river parks, the long roads out. So when I looked for rides that were near.. no randonnees, no gravel fondo, not centuries, no events littered with dates and places for long stretches of road.
Bogus is the go-to. Mountain trails in summer for dirt and rubber, and frozen over for waxes laminate and filed steel edges. Someone said it'd be an hour out, 17 miles to the top, and after a picnic up top where we took the car after work one day, well, why not.
Except: that's 5,000 feet of gain in that 17 miles. It relents three times: once just short of the first third, a loop winding down and then back up that is a nice relief somewhere around the 5-mile mark, then turning to a nice, humming sheet of asphalt all the way to the top, so fresh it doesn't have lines on it yet, and so few cars to make you squeamish.
Not that you need it: the edges are steep and close and I can't imagine the view without the smoke. The twitches started for me maybe 12 or 13 miles in, but some water sussed them out.
I guess I get the point of gears now. Or just more time onboard and heading up, which is too lovely, and all down on the return. I think it'll be an often-repeated little outing, but I'll have to remember to leave the bags at home.