Sunday, October 22, 2006

Tour de Griffin Ride Report...

This ride report is a little late but since I was not able to ride this weekend, I thought I would post our ride from last weekend, 10/14/06. Enjoy!

After reading Bruce’s Burwell ride report, I guess the temps we had when we started our ride this morning could have been worse. With Scott mapping out an 80 mile route for us this morning, Scott, Alan and I left about 6am, with temps at a chilly 42 F. Wasn’t quite sure if I was up to it since I have been fighting off a cold all week. But I am glad I did. One thing about riding the "Tour de griffin," you know you will be taken care of. With hidden water bottles along the route, it was like we had our own little rest stops.

It was rough the first couple of hours due to the cold, but if you have ever gone riding and been able to hear everything “wake up” first thing in the morning as the sun starts to rise, it is pretty amazing. Luckily I had decided on going a little overboard with my clothing (double layer tights, jersey, vest, jacket, large beanie that my helmet could hardly fit over – no style points for me). Next time I will focus more on my toes. I was positive they were going to be blue when I got home! I think Scott was getting a little worried about his fingers after hearing a couple of stories about Alan having frostbite! But I think we made it back counting all 10 on hands and feet!

Except for a close encounter with a couple of deer that crossed right in front of us (if you want the whole story, ask Scott, or you will need to speak with our attorney), the whole ride was pretty uneventful (the way I like it). We headed out of town and road through Ramer, Snowden, Grady, 231, 331 and who knows what other roads. It was nice doing something a little different and getting in some new scenery (Bruce, this ride was right up your alley). We weren’t in a hurry and enjoyed some good conversation with an average speed of around 16-17.

Heading into Ramer, we stopped at the local grocery store (the only grocery store at that). Didn’t see any double-patty sausage biscuits, nor any grits with hot sauce, but we loaded up on a little Gatorade and some more water. It is always amusing seeing people’s faces when 3 grown men walking around in public wearing spandex from head to toe.

Heading back, I hit the 65 mile wall. We all have them and mine is around 65 miles. After that my legs slowly start to hurt more and more. Scott was starting to wear down and Alan and I went ahead (Scott insisted). Alan is an extremely strong rider but I set my eyes on those Rolfs and didn’t let go. Lucky for me there was a headwind (Alan wasn’t going as fast as he normally does). Unlucky for me there was a headwind (even though I was drafting, my legs were on fire). It seemed like an eternity before we hit Pike Road. But Alan kept a steady pace, never falling off an 18 mph+ pace in a brutal headwind. I was thinking the whole time I needed to get in front and give him a break but I knew there was no way I could even come close to keeping the pace he was setting.

We got back to Ray Thorington and I knew I was only 2 miles from home. What a great day in the saddle, all 5+ hours of it. I was hoping to reach 80 miles but I think I ended up with 76. Scott emailed me and let me know that he made it back safely, minus a few “small” cramps, and ended up with 79.52 miles. In my book that is 80 miles (at least in Math class it was)!!!! Congratulations Scott! I am sure Alan ended up with about the same.

What a great day: great bike ride and the Crimson Tide won, it doesn’t get any better than this!