While on vacation and fighting for survival in a world with the US government running at 85 per cent of normal, I came across the Lamb’s Creek Trail. The trail and surrounding recreation area are run by the US Army Corp of Engineers as part of the Tioga Lake and Hammond Lake dams. I expected the recreation areas would be closed and under armed guard to keep people from using the trail, but it was open and unattended as usual. The Outflow Campground on the Great Allegheny Passage, also run by USACE, was closed, so I expected Lamb’s Creek to be as well.
The Manfield end of the trail is just outside the center of town, behind a closed Sears Hardware store. “Probably ransacked by the locals to arm themselves for surviving the Great Shutdown” I thought. There were no bathrooms to change in, however, so I drove to the end at the boat launch in the recreation area. I gunned the motor of the car to smash through barricades, but there were none. I parked, changed, and took off the bike. I didn’t see any sign of a Mad-Max style end of civilization in Mansfield, so I didn’t put traps around the car. Instead I just headed out for a ride, as if the world were working as it always did.
The trail is about three and a half miles long, flat, paved, but in poor repair in spots. I had to swerve around rough pavement often. “Already the Great Shutdown has had an impact,” I thought. One oddity of the trail is that there is a lunch-heaving climb over a small dam just outside Mansfield. To add to my ride I continued on to the boat launch on Lamb’s Creek, bringing my mileage to eight for the day.
Aside from the rough pavement and the dam, the riding was easy. I had a good time on the Lamb’s Creek Trail while surviving Shutmageddon.