Saturday was looking like a perfect day for a road bike ride. Sunny a little warmer, calm wind and my wife had a new road bike to break in. We decided to do a ride we have neglected for a couple of years. A ride we once called the Roadkill Ride but is known by most as Harpers Loop or the Scott/England Ride. The ride can be of various lengths depending on what kind of workout you want. Part of the ride is included in the annual Tour de Rock Benefit Ride for Carti. No matter the distance one thing is common to any route in that area. It’s flat. Not even the tiniest of hills exist on this ride, so no matter what, you’re pretty much pedaling throughout the ride.
We opted for a 40 miler and I took the route from someone on Map My Ride. It would take us through some of our favorite places while minimizing the ride on 165 which is my least favorite park due to the amount of traffic and rip-strips on the shoulders.
We parked the truck at Plantation Agriculture Museum State Park and rode North and then west doing the loop clockwise. This would allow us to go through one of my favorite parts near the end of the ride.
We encountered a little snow and ice in some shady spots early on but once we had hit highway 15 headed toward Keo we were out of the big mess. We did have some large dogs come out to bark at us but yelling NO! seemed to keep them at bay.
The ride to Keo is long and straight but with a good shoulder to deal with the little bit of traffic we came across, then a quick ride down 165 into England and then turned west heading toward the Arkansas River. We did have a wonderful encounter with a mini-van along the way who felt the need to give me a nice dirty icy shower when he passed by us going the opposite direction. This could have been avoided if he had slowed down but that didn’t happen. Oh well, I was now fully awake and over 20 miles into the ride. We finally turned north and before long were greeted by my favorite part of the ride. A ride through the Pecan trees. I noticed a very large squirrel at one point and thought to myself that squirrels who live in pecan groves must be truly living the life, for a squirrel that is. Here is a short video of the ride through the pecans. Looking forward to this in the spring when it’s all leafed out.
A few miles more and we were heading back into Scott, past Cotham’s (home of the Hubcap Burger) and back to the truck. A good ride, we were tired. It was our longest ride in quite some time. We stopped by the Hardin Farms Too store on Highway 165 for a quick lunch and to pick up some brisket and smoked turkey for later. Another great ride in Arkansas. Hope to see you out there soon!