Markers of the Recumbent Cycling Season – Lilacs and Monarchs
This week the Monarch Butterflies are back in New Hampshire. They have started their Southward Migration. For me this is one of the most important markers of the Recumbent Bicycling Season in New Hampshire.
The Monarchs signal that the best days of the bicycling season are here and that it will soon be time to get the Mountain Bike ready. These are beautifully clear, crisp days. These days are a special end of the season treat; in November most days I will be seeking protection from the winds on forest roads. These days are like a dessert wine that comes at the end of a fine meal, they are the sweet ending and should be sipped slowly. The best dessert wines are Ice Wines and this is the beginning of the short days and Ice Nights in New Hampshire.
The other bookend of the season in New Hampshire is the Lilac. They appear in May before the trees have leaves. Their sweet scent foretells the coming of warm weather bicycling and the Touring Season. The days are long again and Mud Season will soon be over.
The Lilac and the Monarch don’t really mark the beginning or the end of the bicycling season but they do signal the beginning and end of the best bicycle touring in New England. When the Monarchs arrive it is time to start planning next year’s Tour.