Archives for category: OR

Idaho
Montana
Oregon
Washington
Utah

join

Alaska
California
Connecticut
New Jersey
New York

doubling the tally in the

DONE
column.

Nevada goes in the newly created
INCOMPLETE
file.

Kansas and Missouri join

Alabama
Delaware
Florida
Louisiana
Maryland
Massachusetts
Mississippi
Rhode Island
Virginia
Wyoming

on the REGISTERED list.

10.9 done, 12 more scheduled .

Monthly mileage:

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The nice thing about camping amidst hundreds of fellow riders is that even before your alarm goes off, you’re woken by the zip of sleeping bags and tent flaps all around you.

We rose before dawn, again. The domestic partner, ensconced in our tiny tent, didn’t understand the urgency in my voice when I kept hissing, “don’t touch the tent!” And then he did. And he got the lesson in condensation. Sigh.

Gear packed, breakfast eaten, bikes retrieved, we hit the road.

Our first rest stop in Winlock featured a giant egg:

Most of the morning was countryside, fairly easy riding. I was having an easier day of it than my beloved companion, who took to suggesting that I just go out ahead and we’d meet up at the rest stops. Alas, the sheer scale of the rest stops made that reconnection challenging!

We were together when we got to the Oregon border – be patient through the middle part of this video (yes, I should borrow a friend’s GoPro instead of trying to do this handheld AND ride a bike) so you can see the bridge, the border, and the LINE. Mom, if you’re reading this, be proud of me for having the common sense to NOT have my camera on as I was crossing the bridge. The long line you’ll see is a result of an earlier crash (just cars, no bikes) on the bridge.

Up the bridge, safely on the shoulder. Then… down. I started passing, flying by other cyclists. Then I saw the gap.

I saw the gap too late to do anything other than think, “uh-oh.”

And then I was over it, while my brain was still processing “your tire could have TOTALLY gotten caught in that, and you would have gone over the handlebars at 30+ miles per hour, and HELLO, broken collarbone, at the very least” and trying to stop for the light at the bottom of the bridge and wait for my more sensible companion and hope that I wasn’t about to be on the receiving end of a lecture about what a dumbass I’d just been. Because I knew. I knew I shouldn’t have done that.

But he didn’t lecture me, and very kindly said as we were headed up a hill, “you look just like Andy Schleck when you climb”
And I decided that he meant something like this:

And not something like this:

So, off I went! Passing riders galore on the climbs (many of whom, aided by their weight, would pass me on the descents).

Finally, we had one last climb and then over the St. Johns bridge into Portland. I tried to get video, because suddenly one could see FOUR mountains!!! Which is a tribute to how amazing the day was, because NONE of the pictures I’ve searched on line show the views! This video is a slightly better version than what I attempted…

I arrived at the bottom of the bridge, overwhelmed by beauty, and done. Oops, another ten miles or so to go, now on Portland streets. With Portland streetlights. And traffic. But I slogged it through to the end, and bullied a really nice guy into taking a picture, which turned out to be this video:

At the beer garden, I got a more exciting picture of the route than the standard Strava link:

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and then it was back to logistics. Get the pedals off the bike, which was made easier by a really nice rep from Raleigh who happened to be on hand with a pedal wrench. Free the zombie from the bike (I tucked him in my suitcase and haven’t seen him since…) Load the bikes on the truck to Seattle with a note that we hoped would help the Recycled Cycles team retrieve them. Cab to the Ace Portland. Upgrade to a room with a shower. Victory!

(and fear not, lovers of mountain shots… your great picture of Mt. Rainier is coming soon!)

I’m starting to understand why people just decide to ride cross-country. The logistics of my quest are proving more challenging than the riding itself.

On the plus side, I found a team for Saints to Sinners (or more accurately, they found me) and I have another two states (Utah and Nevada) on the schedule. I’m really excited about the event, the cause, the new experience of a relay!

On the minus side, I took too long debating about the Tour de Cure Fargo-Moorhead, and by the time I was ready to commit, the airfare was close to $1000 round-trip. Worse, the only other long rides I can find there conflict with existing rides on my schedule. I’ve found some bike-shop sponsored races, but they don’t have the mileage I need.

On the plus side, I found a few friendlier sites to search for rides on:
bikeride.com was always bookmarked, but their new format is friendlier.
gran fondo guide isn’t as comprehensive, but the focus on long, supported rides has done a lot of the editing for me.

On the minus side, I booked a flight for a Detroit gran fondo before I registered for the event… Which was re-scheduled for 2014. It’s a miracle that I could un-book my flight. It was almost a very expensive lesson.

On the plus side, my flights and hotels are booked for my Pacific Northwest excursions, and if I can just get a response from the ride organizer, I think I’m going to check off Alaska this month, too!

On the minus side, flights to the Midwest are hideously prohibitive. If anyone has frequent flier miles that they’re never going to use and would like to contribute to a good cause? Please let me know which airlines (and which causes you’d like me to ride for).

Two months of blogging.

The working out documentation has taken a hit this month, between Map My Ride crashing more than a sprint finish in the cobbled classics and Strava not accommodating my non-riding activities.

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Not to mention my iPhone’s limited battery capacity. I suspect if I want good documentation for the year to come, I will need to delegate tasks. Sure, the phone can be an all-in-one emergency communication device, a GPS enabled mapping tool, a camera, a social media portal, but I might need to delegate the photography and bike computer functions. My bike computer predates cell phones, so it might be time for an upgrade. I’d love to hear your recommendations in the comments below.

Twelve states signed up for as of today:

California
Connecticut
Delaware
Maryland
Massachusetts
Montana
New Jersey
New York
Oregon
Rhode Island
Washington
Wyoming

As I search, I’m realizing that in many of the colder-weather states – the ones it’s crucial I pick up over the summer – the summer cycling season isn’t even on the horizon, and the various cycling clubs’ schedules are “coming soon”.

My fundraising for The Climate Ride and Bike to the Beach progresses…

In 26 days, I’ll be 50. It’s Easter, it’s raining outside, but winter is coming…

Registered for the Group Health Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic today!

Benefits Cascade Bicycle Club

200 miles! 1 and 2 day options. Right now, the two-day option seems challenging enough. I may have to tack on some miles at the finish to get to 50 miles in Oregon.

It’s going to be fun to ride out of my old hometown…