The weather report suggested a “decent” day for a good ride. In the 40’s to 50’s, risking 60 degrees, partly cloudy (which means partly Sunny!) and gentle winds. Well, they’re ALWAYS gentle until it’s a headwind!
I was itching to get out on a “fast bike” but when I realized conditions might be good to squeeze in a Century, that would mean carrying capacity for shedding clothing, so … the Rivendell got the honors. That also meant the day wouldn’t go as fast and I’d have to stay on task to be sure I got home well before rush hour … or DARK.
I tried, I REALLY TRIED to get up at 6am when the alarm went off. But it was still dark, my cat was visiting me in bed and getting his scratches, and my weighted blanket is so warm and cozy …
7:30am comes around and I finally develop enough motivation (guilt) to get my ass up and out the door a bit after 8am. Now I’m pressed for time. I’ve been riding enough to guess how long it will take me to knock this one off. I plotted a 102 mile route the night before, figuring “I’ll do what I can … no promises.” Not 2 miles out the door and POP … my 4th, maybe 5th, flat in 2022. (Gravel King tires are a sweet ride, but man, they sure are delicate for a “gravel” tire.) On the noisy highway at rush hour, finding the puncture was a challenge but locating the offender still stuck in the tire helped locate the pin-prick in the tube. More pressed for time … not optimistic.
Back up and running, I headed southeast toward Macedon on “roads” rather than my usual escape from town via trails … yeah … think I’ll avoid “gravel” today.
My turn-around point was out past Clifton Springs … Toll Road out by the Newark Reservoir. The turn resulted in putting the headwind to my back and picking up the pace toward Canandaigua, where of course, I stop again at Dalai Java for rocket fuel … a Red-Eye and a cookie. I take my goodies to the little park across the street and have a look at the computer: My first stop, 58 miles in and it’s only 1:30. It’s decision time ... I could just head north to the Auburn Trail and head home via the shortest, most direct route. I’d be sure NOT to be late for dinner. Or, I could try to tough it out … Woolston Road being the “barrier” that could make or break the ride. And Me.
Pain is temporary. Mileage Logs are Forever. Let’s Go.
Woolston made me feel it.
The pace slowed down a bit after that, but I was relaxed knowing that I’d certainly knock this one off in time since I’d have a tailwind going home. Until I turned north. The wind had shifted from southeast to northwest. In what seemed like an eternity, I finally reached Mendon Ponds Park and pulled over to refill water bottles. I don’t drink like I should when it’s cool, I dehydrate quickly, and it doesn’t help that I left the house with less than a full bottle. So, a 5 minute stop to drink and refill was required. From Mendon Ponds, the cruise back into the city was pretty simple and putting a foot down in my driveway was a “Special Moment”. I’ve done countless Century rides over the years, but “The First One” each season is important.
It tells me I ain’t dead yet!
So, I hope to do several more centuries this season … maybe ten … with #10 on September 10th, 2022 being yet another “Very Special Ride”. Check it out!
With a somewhat stressful start to the year, this winter has been one where I’ve been MORE than anxious for spring arrive. I was OUT riding this winter as soon as I was cleared from the hernia surgery and I gotta say … I’m not sure if I’ve ever been happier getting back on the bike after an intermission. Weather be damned, I don’t let cold and snow and ice get in the way of a great ride. Studded fat bike tires are the enabling technology if ya like living around here. Yet, this winter has NOT been one of Rochester’s “most impressive”. According to the Golden Snowball, we are about 12 inches behind schedule: 83 vs the 95 inches average to date (3/23/22) and will likely yield this year’s award to Buffalo .... again. ;-)
Mid-March, I needed to squeeze in one more (?) cool ride on possibly one of our last snowy days of the season.
Lehigh Valley Trail - North Branch
45 miles on a fattie takes a while.
And just three days later - POP goes spring, sunshine, warm temps (hit 70!), and the first “longer” ride of the season. I was due for a coffee at Dalai Java in C-Daigua!
83 miles and Bristol Hills for Xtra Credit!
Always makes me think of Buckaroo Banzai.
How long before these are filled with milk production "byproducts"?
Warmer weather and longer days also lure friends out on their bikes, so no surprise, Andy has a day free and we do the “Spring Spin” around the bay before the bay outlet crossing sadly slams shut for the season. (Note how that’s worded.) I have more free time than Andy and Karen, so I supplement the ride with an extra loop of my own.
Today's Rorschach Test - What Do YOU see?
A bit cooler the following day, I have some “research” to do. I’m excitedly watching the continuing upgrades to the Genesee Valley Greenway. New York Parks (formally known as “OPRHP” or “Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Reservation” - seriously?) resurfaced the Scottsburg to Avon section last year and are working on the Scottsburg - Ballantyne section this year. Step one involves establishing a track for the hard base that follows.
It was actually smoother BEFORE the dig. But, in time ...
I met a worker at the Brooks road crossing who told me the expected completion should be around mid June. Hmmm … maybe in time for another southbound S24H … or longer? Who’s in?
I had to jump off the trail at Brooks because the equipment was working south of there, so I took a paved bypass down to Scottsville. Sadly, I met an innocent victim of road rage (f***ing cars!) along the way, and moved him off the asphalt and into the grass. Ya know … I don’t see murdered animals on the side of bike trails. Just sayin’.
Poor Little Guy
At Wadsworth Junction, I turn east across the Genny and lazily cruise the length of the Lehigh Valley Trail through Rush, Rochester Junction, and Mendon to the Auburn Trail connection. Along the way, I see a new development … a creative and natural solution to improve a hikers’ experience in low lying sections.
Anyway, I wrapped up the day with 57 miles on my slightly modified “5 Trail Loop” … the first of likely several runs this coming year(s).
Sunshine, quiet trails, simply sweet Ride!
And ya know what’s REALLY cool about SPRING? It means my skinny bikes can finally come out and play too.
Titanium, Steel, and Single Speed - Let's Go FAST!
Got some very preliminary ideas for this year's Adventures, and one already locked in: