A Mundane March

After big miles in January and February (556 and 491, respectively), the month of March was rather slow. I rode every day (387 miles in all), but my biggest ride was only 40 miles.

I put in a lot of hours at Lehigh Portland Trails. Trail-building is pretty much done for the season, and the maintenance season (trimming, spraying, cleanup) hasn’t really started yet, but there’s still plenty to do. My main tasks have been removal of invasive species. We have an overabundance of Eastern Red Cedar, a large infestation of Bush Honeysuckle, and a smaller invasion of Autumn Olive, Honey Locust, Hedge, Cottonwood, and various vines.

It’ll be years, if ever, before it’s all cleaned up, but I do what I can. I’ve been concentrating on improving an area I call “Stonewall Glade”, a limestone glade surrounded by stone fences, which should be mostly grass, but which is rapidly being overtaken by cedar.

I’ve also been working on an area I call the “Lehigh Prairie”, an area that is primarily grass, but with random (and growing) pockets of cedar and cottonwood and other woody plants.

Cut and burn, cut and burn. It’s endless, but somehow satisfying. The goal is to nurture a higher-quality natural space, over time, by promoting native species, especially wildflowers. It’s the type of thing where there’s a huge investment in time and energy, with an uncertain payoff, but it’s work that is enjoyable in and of itself. I’m lucky to be able to do it.

A few photos from the month:

Cottonwood trees and cedars in the process of overtaking the grass on the Lehigh Prairie.
Windy days brought waves to the quarry lake at Lehigh Portland Trails.
It’s always thrilling to see the first Spring flowers emerge.
Warming weather brings out the reptiles…
Moments before a violent spring storm brought a deluge of rain and hail.
DirtBum Written by:

I enjoy riding bicycles all over -- city streets, suburbia, rural roads, gravel roads, dirt roads, rail-trails, and singletrack. I love exploring the countryside and finding the interesting and historical treasures hidden in plain sight. You can follow my rides on Strava.