Monday, February 23, 2009

Chilly Hilly Slideshow - flickr and Ride Report

I want to see how the Flickr version of the Chilly Hilly slideshow looks. I am considering a switch over.

The ride was great, Cascade Bicycle Club knows how to organize a ride. It was well supported and there was a lot of people providing snacks, food, cider and encouragement. Riding over on the ferry was a treat. Seeing all the bikes in the ferry really makes you wonder what it would be like if every day people rode their to work. The forecast was horrible, wet and cold, instead we got a light sprinkle for the 8am starting riders and mid-40s weather all day. The sun was out and it was beautiful.

I was on the first ferry out and weeble-wobbled out with the mass of cyclists in the start. My initial speed was 5mph out of the ferry and it didn't get much better until 4 miles in. It was just too crowded. Everyone was cheerful though and a lot of the riders were experienced with group rides so there was a lot of calls of "Car up, Car Back, and on your left". The first 10 miles are a joy, the hills are small and it lures you in. Later on the hills started getting steep, I have heard various stories about how steep they were. Supposedly the hills are only 8% grade, but my garmin edge doesn't agree with them. Three of the hills were longing and about 11-12%, some of the middle third were short and steep. The crowd pushed me along and I averaged a decent clip. I did see a trike at the beginning but the rider was faster than I and I only caught a glimpse of him once in the 33 miles around.

I did stop at the famous cider stop at the 18 mile mark, but I didn't get any cider, I was too concerned with pushing onward. Overly concerned it turns out, I neglected my nutrition and hydration. Nearing the end of the ride I had my left calf cramp up, I couldn't move my leg and crashed down. I was able to get my right leg out and catch myself so it was a controlled crash. Lucky for me someone stopped right away and massaged my leg and helped me stretch it out. I drank a bit of my propel (water) and finished the ride. At the end my calf stiffened up again but it was at least walkable. Everyone on this ride was great. I talked to a Giro rider (another recumbent) and kept pace with him for a bit, until he and his wife left me in the dust. I believe I saw five recumbents on the ride; A Giro 26, a Terratrike Tour, a yellow Haz (sic), a tandem Rans Screamer, and a tandem with a recumbent captain and upright stoker.

Great fun.

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