Beata Wronska on Night Riding: Florida Swamp Ride

December 28, 2013

By Beata Wronska

By the time we were ready to go it was less than an hour to sun down  – sound familiar?

I really felt like biking that evening no matter what. We grabbed all the lights we had the Seca, Taz, and the Solite 250 EX and strapped them on the bars and helmet – we were set. We jumped on the bikes and started cruising on the beautiful gravel path in the middle of the most northern part of the Florida Everglades.

When I ride in the daylight I see so many unbelievable creatures here, from alligators, bobcats, deer, wild hogs, hawks, ospreys, I could go on. All of it while surrounded by wind, sun, and grassland with never ending views far into the setting sun.  I bike here in the scorching heat of the Florida sun or to the summer thunderstorms trying to bike as hard as I can to get out of the angry clouds while covered in sand and drained by rain…

BeataSwampThis time we headed into the setting sun and into the dark and oh man, it was so different, peaceful and quiet. Just less than 30 minutes into our ride we were in complete darkness. It crossed our minds to cut the ride short since the whole loop was 20 miles long and takes us far away from the park entry, but everything just felt so good. We had so much amazing light coming out from our bikes that we felt safe and comfortable.

Half way through the ride we had a helicopter right above shooting a beam of light at us, just a little more powerful than the Seca 2000, we waved at it and kept on going.

With the helicopter gone we were back to the sound of the gravel under the tires, humming wind and your own breath. The ride was so amazingly pleasant that we kept on going and ended up doing the whole loop and came back with a stellar time.  I’m so happy we got out and rode that night. It was something that would be tough to forget. To be honest I can’t wait to get out and do it all over again…

Beata WronskaBeata Wronska is a Cat 1 Mountain Biker and an Xterra Triathlete. She rides for Bike Tech Miami and races all over Florida and the country. Her dream race is going back to the Xterra World Championship in Maui, Hi.