Saturday the weather was going to be good and I had heard that some trails were going to be dry. There was also talk about Ft. Duffield getting some work put in and the race course marked. I was thinking about how good it would be to get back in the woods and how nice it would be to get a glimpse of the course before the upcoming race. It was a good plan, but like most plans, there are always issues.
My first problem is that the Niner still has the small knobbies on for gravel. They would do the job in the middle of summer, but with it being the first dry weekend in a while, I would say they are probably not the idea tires. My solution was to take the Misfit down there. It has more than enough tread on it for any kind of trail condition. It is even geared down for some weak legs or lots of climbing. So, for a day or so I was trying to figure out logistics on making this happen.
Then the Thursday night ride came and blew up my legs. It was a great ride, but it took quite a toll on me. I was exhausted and then tried to stay up to watch the IU game. If the game would have been good, I would have missed it anyway. The next day my legs were telling me it was a silly idea to drive 2 hours each way only to put in a mediocre ride. I really want to make a trip down there before the race, but I still have a few weeks to try and squeeze that in. Maybe I can get a few rides in at Ferdinand to build up my SS legs again before I go.
So, when I heard about a more casual group ride on Saturday with less hills, I knew that was the correct answer. It was not as warm as I had hoped it would be when we started, but I still didn’t have to put on as many layers as I have been. I was a little cool when I started, but overall was just about right for the whole ride. The sun was great, but the wind was cool and oh what a wind it was. I have no idea how strong the wind was, but it sure put a hurting on us for some sections.
The idea of going for a flatter ride was correct as we went about 500 ft. of elevation less than Thursday’s ride, but the plan of going easy only lasted for about 20 min. I think the problem was that we had a rider join us that did not attend the Thursday hammer fest. This put the pace way higher than we thought it was going to be. This teamed up with the strong winds and the pace everyone climbs each hill, it was a very hard ride. In face the consensus was that it just might have been a harder ride than Thursday. I am not sure if it was really that hard or the fact that our legs were tired from the other ride, but it hurt. The scary thing for an easy ride is that we had a faster moving pace than Thursday and rolled along at 20 mph. We ended up with a little less average overall with some stops at the end. Another great day on the bike!! I can just hope for many more.