waldo lake in a pouring summer rain. sticky trails. solo traverse of the entire lake. 22 miles of silence, rhythm and single track. shirtless, two water hand helds and a few gels. wmd's on my feet helping to negotiate the flow and channel the vibrations. mindfulness was at the forefront of conscious thought. the miles just clipping by.
i remember reading an article a few years back about how flow is about the peak experience in which you can evolve and increase your cognitive flexibility. the trade off is that with a highly practiced skill the information processing you need in concentrating on your rhythm and pacing becomes effortless and it allows you to allocate more of your consciousness to allow more to be experienced from the environment or imagination.
i always was aware of it surfing daily in the early 90's. it's a connection between the spiritual and science that has always been part of a great debate. i think of 0j0 and the great, unspoken connection that is there and why. my attraction to adventures where transcendence and great physical outpouring is present. long mountain bike rides. long trail runs. it's not about just spending time, it's about the speed and rhythm of the task as well. just hiking won't do it. the rhythm of carving single track on a bicycle and moving with the earth rather than against it. single track that is animal made or older than modern trail making always seems to flow with nature rather than some man made dedicated single track bent on entertainment rather than function.
i guess on one hand, there is not such thing as bad single track. but go run by a flowing river or old animal path and see where your mind goes versus riding the twisty dedicated single track of a "park"