The ride started out at Discovery Park with registration at 8 am. I decided to ride my bike there because I figured it would be a nice warm-up for the ride.
The way the ride works is we ride in groups we think we belong in. I rode with the intermediate 80 mile loop group, which meant we were riding in a 14 to 16 mile pace. News of that made me slightly nervous since 16 seemed a bit fast for my liking.
At 8:30 off we went and the pace seemed fine. There was quite a bit of climbing - my favorite and the climbs separated our group of about 50 (?). I quite liked my group with the exception of this sub group that represented everything I hate about bicyclists when I drive my car. They rode as if they owned the road and kept passing other bicyclists on the right. I almost rode into a passing car because of this. Those wild west antics got old real fast.
About 1/3 of the way through the ride I lost the front end of my group - as well as the back end. We had just climbed a bit, so the group was stretched out. I kind of knew the way we were going, so I kept biking, hoping I would find the front end again. I had one other bicyclist behind me who was following me - talk about the blind leading the blind. I managed to find someone who was wearing a ride leader jersey and sped up to catch up with him - but man, was he going fast. Somehow I caught up and latched on all the way to the next snack stop, which turned out to be 15 miles away.
When we finally stopped, I was thinking to myself ; "wow, that was fast!" Eugene, who was the other rider from my group, had latched onto me, and he shared the same sentiment. He told me we had been riding 20+ miles per hour - because the ride leader was the sweep from the fast group. Hahaha. No wonder he was gunning it. And little ol' me managed to hold on. I impressed myself ever so slightly.
I'm back on my old bike today, Bluebell, because my new bike started making strange noises right as I approached Discovery Park. The mechanics at the ride had a feeling it was the wheel bearings, and I have absolutely no idea, so off to REI it went after the ride (which explains the end of my ride). I will however get it back by Thursday, so I will be riding it for Tour de Blast.
Here's the ride with GPS (I forgot to pause it):
I liked the ride but I probably won't do it again because I don't like group riding. This ride clinched that notion for me.
Here's a picture from the ride. Our ride leader got a flat during our delicious sandwich stop at Leschi Park. The tire just went "pffffft" as it was laying on the ground. I suppose if you're going to get a flat, the best time to do so is when not riding the bike.
|Our ride leader changing tube|
Next up: Tour de Blast!