It happens every time I think about a new challenge: I get intimidated by the subject matter, and the vanishing points topic was no different. Almost immediately I thought of the many long, straight roads here in Minnesota farm country, but I wondered, “where the heck am I going to find anything besides vanishing roads?” I was afraid I’d have to use alternative means to boost things along.

My alternative means.

It happens every time I actually start riding my bike and keeping my eyes open for picture opportunities: I start finding more than I ever thought possible. Today, I took a pretty long ride and found at least 20,000 different vanishing points. Luckily for me — and for you — I only took about eight pictures though (plus a couple extra ones not related to anything that vanishes. We’ll get to that at the end of the post.)

Before we get into the other stuff, here is another road. It doesn’t exactly disappear, but it narrows down quite a bit.

I had to stoop down to plant level to get this photo of a vanishing row of sun-dried soybeans.

There is a road and there are soybeans in this picture, but the true feature of this picture is the row of telephone poles that goes on to oblivion.

Would you like to know a secret? There is no such thing as a true vanishing point. It’s just an illusion caused by distance and perspective.

Check it out for yourself. If you try to ride all the way to the vanishing point, you’ll be very disappointed to find when you get there that it is actually just as wide as the point where you started. My quest for the spot in the road where it actually disappeared took me on a lot longer ride than I intended. I have a feeling that even if I pedaled for three or four days I STILL wouldn’t have found that point.

Disappearing irrigator.

Vanishing fence.

The Air Quality Index in MY Town at the moment is 56, which is considered “POOR.” There has been a little haze in the atmosphere for a few days now, but today is the first day I’ve actually been able to SMELL it.

But then, I haven’t been out riding for a couple days on account of The Feeshko’s knee surgery and me staying at home to provide care for her. As a result, my last riding streak ended at four days. Today was the first day of my all NEW riding streak. (Thank you again to everybody for the positive thoughts and well-wishes for The Feeshko. The surgery went very, very well according to the surgeon, and he was able to perform a good repair to the meniscus tear. Now begins the recovery and the physical therapy.)

As I wrote earlier, my bike ride ended up being a lot longer than I expected. Next thing I knew, I was in Old Grumbleface’s and Seaside Janet’s part of the country — that is, grape country . . . wine country.

The grape vines of northern California lead to a beautiful vanishing point.

TRICKED YOU! There is a winery only three or four miles from MY Town.

That brings me to my final story that is unrelated to vanishing points. I was cruising along, minding my own business, when I saw what appeared to be a bird lingering on the road. As I got closer, I could see it was feeding on something. I assumed it was a crow or vulture. Soon thereafter, I saw the white tail feathers and I frantically pulled my phone out of my pocket and tried to zero in on the eagle while I rode.

If you will grant me the favor of zeroing in on that spot on the left side of the road, you, too, will see the white tail feathers.

I tried to take about six picture in the next few seconds, but this is the only clear one I could get of Mr. Bald Eagle as he flew away.

As I rode by, I could see the eagle’s meal was an immature raccoon. He tried to fly off with it but the raccoon must have been a little too heavy because Mr. Bald Eagle dropped it just a few feet after takeoff.

Sometimes I wonder why the bald eagle continues to be my favorite bird. I guess many years ago I admired the vision of that majestic bird swooping down onto a wilderness lake or river, capturing a trout in its talons, and flying back to its nest to feed the baby eagles.

I have witnessed that noble raptor-like spectacle twice. It was really cool. At least 30 times, on the other hand, I have seen our national bird feeding on roadkill or other carrion, like some kind of common vulture or hyena.

Anyway, thanks for reading this overly long post.

Hi. My name is Greg and I ride my bike a lot. That is to say, I ride my bike almost every day. I go on long rides and short rides. Sunny rides, cloudy rides, and rainy rides. I like commuting, errand-running, day-tripping, overnighting, and touring on my bike. I ride on city streets, highways, gravel, single track, and snow with equal enthusiasm. Sometimes I ride fast and sometimes I ride slow. I try to keep my feet on the pedals at stop lights and I do not dismount when I hop up on a curb. I have a roadie bike, a mountain bike and a touring bike. I try to accept any challenge a bike ride can throw at me without complaint. But I don't like bugs.

5 response to "NOT ARCHES"

  1. By: Rich-Illinois Posted: September 23, 2020

    Great to hear Freeshko’s procedure went well!
    Most of those photos could easily pass for east central Illinois.
    Fact is, on a ride this afternoon, you and I took some very similar photos — so I will be copy-catting you.
    GMTA, well, at least one of them does, and it ain’t mine. 😉

  2. By: BobinVT Posted: September 24, 2020

    Wonderful news that the surgery went well! Hopefully the recovery and PT will go equally well. I’ll admit to being a little intimidated with this challenge too, especially since I don’t have those flat, straight Midwestern roads available. But, I’m going to get out today and see what I can find.

  3. By: Suzanne Posted: September 24, 2020

    Good thing Scott posted the new challenge already. Otherwise you might not have been able to keep your promise not to take any more arch pictures!

    Good to hear that the Feeshko is doing well!

  4. By: NancyG Posted: September 24, 2020

    Good to see that the Feeshko had a very successful surgery, and that you have been at hand to assist her ;’-).

    Ideas from your post gives me more hope that I might be able to actually do this challenge. So thanks for that ;’-)

    I have learned that some wineries in Oregon (and maybe CA?) have been ruined by the fires. Sad.

  5. By: Lednar De Nalloh Posted: September 25, 2020

    Got a trip planned out to eastern wheatbelt with the cycling club, should be lots straight lines to the horizon there.
    The Feeshko sounds like a tough cookie, she’ll be doing cartwheels with you in no time.

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