Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Lonely, Wet & Cold Sunday Ride

Some of my fair weather riding buddies bailed on me Sunday morning in fear of getting wet - guess they thought that they might melt. I can't blame them I guess . . . . May 31st and it was 9 degrees Celsius (48 Fahrenheit), rain on the way and 20km/hr wind. Hard to believe that it'll be summer in a few short weeks.

I could have ridden the trails out in Kanata or at Fortune, but with all the rain that we've had this past week, I wouldn't have been doing them any favours. So, I packed my rain jacket and I was happy enough sticking to the road.

I basically followed the same route above, except I road up to Cross Loop from River Rd, when I got to Pine Rd and the #50 I rode through the park on the double track, down Meech Lake Rd to Fortune, up and through the park and home. The mileage was just a tad bit over 115km all said and done.

This was the last little bit of blue sky that I'd see for the day, just at the top of the steep downhill headed towards Mt Cascade (check my speed out below).

Deserted roads.

It was blindingly green.

Stopped at the covered bridge in Wakefield to put on my rain jacket, and took this shot.

My new favourite bakery in Wakefield.
The only thing I ate before I left the house in the morning was a banana and a coffee. I wasn't even that hungry when I stopped in Wakefield (another advantage of being 'big boned' - lots of extra fuel stored on board to be burned) and was stopping more to fill up a bottle. Not being so hungry might of had something to do with the medium pizza I ate the night before. Still, if you're going to stop, you may as well eat.

Mmmmmm, saddle butter tart.
This was the best butter tart I've ever had - seriously. Dates, buttery goodness and even tasted like there was some pumpkin in it.
After I viewed this photo at home I realized I put a yummy butter tart on my sweaty, wet & stinky saddle (at least it is a new saddle).
Only made the butter tart taste better . . . . Mmmmm, arse tart.

Cross Loop Rd. headed towards Pine Rd and the trail head to the #50.
I love the versatility of a cross bike (fitted with the proper tires) - pavement, gravel and double track all in the same ride.

Up the #50 and into the park via double track. I opted out of riding along River Rd or the 105 to stay out of the driving cold rain. Much more shelter in the forest and much more scenic and added a bit of an off-road adventure.

Reason for photo is two-fold: one, that was my max speed (into a headwind) coming down the 18% grade into Mt. Cascade - I'm sure others have gone way faster . . . . which leads me to, two, check out my tires: Grand Bois 700 x 30. I love these tires. They carry speed on the road, cushy enough to handle the gravel roads, and can even take the punishment of rocky, rooty double track.

Fisticuff and Lac Meech in the rain.
I had to watch my speeds on the descents on the #50 and #36 back to O'Brien - lots of rocks and roots and no grip'tion on these tires. There were a few uphills with technical sections that I had to walk.

Token "I'm in the shot and rode the ride" shot.

From O'Brien it was up the Fortune Parkway climb, to the Champlain Parkway and towards home. Just a little over 4 and a bit hours of saddle time. Only once did I consider stopping, phoning Chris to come pick me up and bailing on the ride. Despite the weather, it really was a great ride.


rick is! said...

does that say 73 or 83? at first I thought it was in mph and I almost shart myself but then I remembered you're up in the land of beer and beavers so it all makes sense now.

the original big ring said...

Hey Rick,

83 km/hr

I've gotten it up to 86 before - I've got a friend who had it up in the low 90's.

rick is! said...

so, if I've done the math correctly, that comes out to approximately 14.2 miles per hour right?

Papa G said...

We were out at Fortune Sunday morning. Conditions were not bad, some slick stuff but nothing dangerous.

Must have been tricky handling of the Fisti on the 36, couple of gnarly rocky sections there.

The Evil MGE! said...

The Storms feared our Death March this weekend...Saw them hitting nearby peaks but they just trickled on us for about 5 minutes and back to clear skies and amazing views in Estes Park.

That speed almost threw me off too..Kilometers make so much more since.

Anonymous said...

Have to get some riding back in up there.
Ain't nothing like the trails up there - up the 5 to the 15 to 1 to the firetower then down the 24 to the 40 (a blast!) then to the 36 to the 50,52,53 back though the 36 then to CF to the 14 down the 1 to Penquin then a fine road home via Mine road etc...
That's a sweet day on the ride.
(always brings a shit face grin to my face and a busted ass muscle. Haven't done that ride in a loong while though... )

The Evil MGE! said...

gosh dern blogger and its ability to keep your comments forever locked in cyberspace..that was supposed to be sense but since it went and screwed me "since" it is.

Matt Surch said...

NIce loop. Great ride for a wet day.

BTW, tomorrow night's ride might well be on mtbs.