First Day of Fall

Bike path near Bluegill boat launch on Mott Lake
Bike path near Bluegill boat launch on Mott Lake

The first day of fall in Michigan this year was beautiful, if you're a huge fan of summer weather. Blue skies and bright sunshine beckoned to me, and I decided to take a break from work. With temperatures in the 80s, it seemed like a good day to take a ride on the nearby bike path on Mott Lake.

The bike path is used by hikers and bikers wanting to keep fit while communing with nature. It winds through woods alongside Mott Lake, offering breathtaking views of the lake and surrounding land. Despite the day's climate, few people were taking advantage of the path on the first day of autumn. During the hour I was on the trail, I saw a man walking his dog, a lady pushing a baby stroller, a hiker, and a brief glimpse of another cyclist who was pedaling much faster than me.

Autumn colors were not yet in full bloom. Many leaves around the base of trees and plants were becoming yellow, sumac and oaks were tipped in red, but for the most part, the woods were still green. Late goldenrod dotted the landscape and squirrels raced back and forth across the path storing up nuts for the winter.

The resting benches that line the path at various locations were vacant. The mile markers seemed more faded than the last time I was on the trail, but many of the rails that line the ditches along the path had been replaced. I slowed when I reached the areas that provided lake views, and noted that flocks of ducks were hugging the shore along the bike path.

I saw one lone angler on the dock on my way down the path; he was still there on my way back. I briefly considered joining him to ask what he was fishing for, but shadows were deepening, my legs were getting weary and I began feeling overheated. I continued down the path.

The peace the trip along the lake provided caused me to resolve to make biking on the path part of my regular routine until the snow flies. That is, as long as I'm not on a boat on the water trying to hook a big one.

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