I needed to get a blog post in for October, to keep my streak alive: I have managed to write at least one blog entry each month since late 2009.
We just survived Hurricane Sandy, which was reportedly the largest storm ever to strike north of Cape Hatteras, and also it’s been quite some time since the Mid Atlantic was impacted by a hurricane this late in the year. But then again, my memory only goes back to Hurricane Floyd in the late 1990s. All in all, Sandy wasn’t too hard on our immediate area. We got lots of rain and wind, but in general, it wasn’t as much of an impact as the Derecho that hit us last June, or the one-two punch of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in Summer 2011. It was our second hundred-year storm in a row. Statistically speaking, we should be good to go now until, oh, the year 2200 or so.
I took my bike through Patapsco State Park, and it was a big mess, as it always is after large rainfall events. The river was running high and fast, and there were 8 or 9 downed trees on the Grist Mill Trail, as well as one huge mudslide. The carnage was all on the lower section of the trail, between the swinging bridge and Lost Lake. The upper Grist Mill, between the swinging bridge and Ilchester Rd, was clear, as was River Rd from the Avalon day use area out to the swinging bridge.
I then took River Rd from the park out to Frederick Rd. The road had some mud and standing water in spots, but was otherwise in good shape. The problem was that Thistle Rd was closed off (probably a fallen tree; I didn’t investigate) so there was a ton of car traffic diverted onto River Rd. I took Frederick Rd down towards Ellicott City, and up Oella Ave., which was in good shape. The No. 9 Trolley Trail was clear from Oella Ave. to its terminus at Chalfonte Dr. in Catonsville. In Catonsville, Asylum La. was blocked off due to downed trees and power lines, so I had to detour onto Valley Rd. to get to UMBC. I’m sure conditions will improve over the next several days.
In other news, my office is going to be moving. I am staying at UMBC, but I’m moving from a building with nice, easy, ground-level access to my office, to a 6th-floor office which will require me to take an elevator. This is going to require some changes to my bike commuting routine, so stay tuned for some new tips as I get settled in over the next several weeks.