Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sunday Rides Are NOT Pre-Planned

Before the forecast for the coming Sunday got "yukky" for cycling, Snapper inquired what was the planned 40-mile course for Sunday (I had let a cat out of a bag that showed that I planned to ride 40 miles this coming Sunday).  My response: 

My Sunday rides are usually not planned routes -- certainly not planned days ahead of time.

Sometimes I get an idea after the Saturday ride.

Sometimes I figure a course when putting on my clothes.

Sometimes I start riding MVC and just see where the front wheel takes me as I look for miles.

Sometimes I go exploring and / or expunging .

Sometimes I decide that I need some more hill practice . (I can't imagine any other reason for doing that ride, that day.)

One time last year, I asked two couples (about my age) where they were riding .
 . . And they showed me their cue sheet, and it was an interesting route,
 . . . . so after they left, and I finished prepping, I did their course,
 . . . . . . except I skipped Woodlief and Purnell roads.
 . . . . . . . .And then I added more after returning to PUE to refuel and eat something.

Sometimes when he can't ride on Saturday, LT will call or e-mail, often he has a plan as here or here or here or here .
 . . (Notice how LT's rides tend to be either "let's go to Bahama" or "let's do a really hilly route", or both.

There is one route I guarantee that LT will never have an interest in doing: this one -- and I only intend to do that route, or a similar one, if the weather is questionable or I am questionable.

If you need to ride on a Sunday, please do feel welcome to contact me. Just don't expect me to have plan ahead of time. I might have a plan -- but don't expect one. Also, be prepared for some SLOW during a LONG warm-up period.


Jan-28: Me 46, Serendipity 130

I initially thought I might name this entry "Warm It Was, But Breezy". 

But on Doc Nichols I spied a cyclist ahead of me.  At first I thought, where did that person come from?  Then I thought, I think I'm catching them -- yep -- they aren't pedaling all the time, so I'm catching them.

Then I thought I recognized the position of the cyclist on the bike, but I wasn't sure.  When I got closer, I saw that they had a little round blinkie (turned off), and that was consistent with whom I thought the person might be.  But the legs, in long black tights, didn't seem quite right.  But the upper-body position on the bike was absolutely spot-on for the person whom I had in mind. 

Those that ride with me know that I can ride down Doc Nichols pretty quickly, and today was no exception.  Still thinking the legs weren't quite right, I pulled out wider to pass the person -- as soon as I saw the water bottles, I knew for sure who the rider was.  There is only one person with that upper-body position AND THOSE bottles.  Bottles that have been just about every ride since . . . I can't remember when.  Bottles that have ridden several MS-150 New Bern events.  Bottles that rode the Tour de Cure.  Bottles that have ridden near countless 100+ milers in the last three years.    Bottles that have ridden x-country in 26 days.  Bottles that rode up Brasstown Bald and two days later rode up Mt. Mitchell.  Bottles that rode the Tejas 500 last year. 

Lively conversation ensued.
"I thought that was you."
"How far are you riding today?  70?"
"Where are you now?"
"Had any help?"
"Where you going next?"
"Down Baptist and back up, I guess."
"I can probably do that.  Want some help?"
"That would be nice.  This wind is killing me."

We zipped easily down Baptist, soft-pedaling at 19.5 with a tailwind and mostly downslope course.  Oh, that all courses were all downslope and all with the wind at the back.

We moved pretty dang good back up Baptist, too -- even if I do say so myself.  However, not being a complete masochist, we turned onto Southview as "Serendipity" had never ridden on Southview, and although it is a shorter than continuing on Baptist all the way to the highway, it was not head-on into the wind, and a change of scenery is always nice, now or in the future. 

The extra serendipity rider we had picked up in the State Recreational Area turned toward Coley when we got to Kemp; we turned toward Virgil.  I think I climbed up to Virgil better than I did on Thanksgiving Day when we were trying to do a "time-trial".

At the top of Virgil we turned toward Shady Grove Rd as I was going to lead across Shady Grove and back across Olive Branch to Carpenter Pond.  However, the riding (with a tailwind) on CP was so easy that within 50 yards I said I would lead on Shady Grove, Olive Branch, and then Carpenter Pond and Leesville all the way to Doc Nichols.  I pulled over just after the turn onto DN, and emptied the contents of my untouched water bottle into her water and gatoraid bottles.  All I had left was about 4 or 5 ounces of diluted gatoraid to make my last 12.5 miles back to BJP. 

I think Lynn was hoping I would continue on with her for a bit, but I explained that I had been riding a bit harder than I would have if I had been alone, so I was taking the easy way back to BJP. 

That sums up my 19-mile cycling gift today.  Pulled for 19 miles, bringing my avg pace from just under 15.0 mph after 12.4 miles to 16.0 mph in those 19 miles.  (The average had been 16.3 when we reached the marina at the bottom of Baptist.)

The tailwind on Leesville, CP, MVC and Pleasant Union Ch roads blew me back to BJP.
My darn Cateye has been measuring long ever since the first of the year.  I find it quite annoying.  Today, the Cateye claimed 46.5 miles, but I knew it had measured long from BJP to DocNichols and I knew it had measured long on the return to BJP from DocN.  The miles reported below were developed using "veloroutes dot org". 

BJP: DocN-BaptistMarina-Southview-Virgil-ShadyGrove-OliveBranch-CP-Leesville-U-turn @ DocN; 45.9 m.; 2hrs, 47min; 16.4 mph.

Jan tot: _4 rides; 208.5m.; 12 hrs, 54 min; 16.1 mph.
Although the monthly mileage is much less than I had hoped / planned for (due to COLD and the SNOW coming this weekend), I still got a personal record for January miles.  And got in two 100+ km rides -- which is two more than the total for all previous Januaries combined (only have to go back to 2006 to confirm that -- it is not as if I have been riding for years and years).

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Jan-23: For the first time ever . . .

. . . I can't recall who all was on the ride!

10 am starters - there were 13 total - how many can I name?:

 1. me (69 miles)
 2. Duke (47)
 3. BobH (45 + ~ 14 to and fro the ride)
 4. Norris (45 + ~ 14 to and fro)
 5. Iva (47 + ~ 6 to and fro)
 6. LT (47 + ~ 3 to and fro)
 7. Lee (47 + ~ 6 to and fro)
 8. Dr. Phil (47)
 9. John H (~ 69; rode to the ride, shorted the "long" course to go directly home)
10. young Mark (47)
11. Mark's dad = Bill (47)
12. Jeffrey (47)
13. Walt (45)

11 am starters - two more; they met us on the road:

14. Snapper (49)
15. Smitty (49)
Somehow, when making the above list, the extra names came to me. And once I see the names, I can recall the distances they rode. I can even recall the cast of characters that were dragging the pace up early, and in the middle, and further. But obviously, I have no idea what happened on the "homeward" leg of the "47". I  also obviously have no idea what most the conversation was for the first 34 miles (PUE to Grissom) because I was almost NEVER near the lead group. And if I got there (because the "lead" waited), I didn't stay there long -- the combination of Suitt's Store Rd., Old Franklinton Rd., Suitt's Store Rd, NC-96 and the downslope half of Wayside Farm Rd. being the ONLY exception.

Thanks MUCH to Dr. Phil for sticking with me and making my outbound trip on Bruce Garner much better. Phil may be a bit out of shape, he may have been the elder statesman of the ride, but he is still one STRONG cyclist.

Thanks much to Snapper, Smitty, and JohnH for taking it easy on me during the "long" riders section of the ride.

As an aside: I was avg'ing 16.0 mph when we got to Grissom (the 2nd time). I was still avg'ing 16.0 mph at the bottom of MVC with just the climb up to PUE left to do -- but getting there had NOT been "pretty".
Another ond for the "For the first time ever" category is that we "left" someone other than "Wolfie"-Karen; meaning they "disappeared" and no one knew where they were. Actually, they disappeared and "no one" knew that they had disappeared. (Wolfie, fyi, neither Smitty nor I were involved in "losing" anyone.)

[edited Feb-06-2010]

The above paragraph needs some 'splainen':  I am not counting the times when various people (Wave particularly comes to mind) tried using their I-pod or I-phone or Blackberry or whatever to figure a route because they were incapable of (a) reading an accurate and well-designed cue sheet or (b) recognizing a corner they had been through previously or (c) recognizing a road upon which they had ridden several times previously.  See here and here #2 and here #3 for more details.  I still wonder how effective those orienteering courses that Wave taught the Scout could have been . . . at least they all got back from their wilderness hike out West.

I am also not counting the time that Steve got lost in Franklinton as a "bonus" to the "education" he was being given.  See here for details .

I am also not counting last September when I was taking a week off following my crash, and the crew missed a turn, and thought they were headed to Tennessee.

Wave "got lost" and took the others with him.  Steve got "ed-ju-ca-ted".  The September crew all had each other.

Karen got "left" .  The Duke got "left".  And in each case, the others did not realize it.

[end edit]

After the ride, after I got my damp top(s) off, after I had stretched, etc., after I had made a few important phone call, but before I left PUE, LT and Mrs. LT pulled in to the parking lot. Among the points of conversation, LT asked if the Duke had ridden the extra with me -- uh, no, he was doing the 47, following you, Dave. (Dave was probably still confused by the Duke wearing long cycling pants -- without those massive calves exposed, it was harder to recognize Bob.) If I were you, Bob, tomorrow, when I saw Dave, I would cross my arms and say things like "uh-huh", "suurrrrre", "uh-huh" -- then make a show of grudgingly forgiving Dave -- but only after he made a really good show of groveling.

Seriously, in the future, when we are splitting the group for "short" and "long", we WILL do a MUCH better job of making sure the respective leaders are absolutely sure who is going with them.
 Best comment of the day (that I heard):

Iva, after completing Flat Rock Rd to get back to Grove Hill Rd: "pah-lease tell me that that was the assault part of the 'Assault'!" The Duke's immediate comment was almost as good: "Ditto!"

LT told me (when we were zipping across Suitt's Store Rd, I think) that a couple people had made similar comments to him.

Hey, we didn't have a southwest wind. Try Flat Rock Rd the direction we did it today into a southwest wind sometime. Guaranteed to "enhance" your thoughts that you might be in the mountains.
One last thing.  Just for kicks, before we started riding, I asked the 12 riders assembled for the 10 am start "who has a cue sheet?"  A higher percentage than usual:  1 of the 12 did.  Actually, that is a bit unfair:  4 of the 12 never had a chance of obtaining a cue sheet.  Still, a higher percentage than usual:  1 of 8 did.

If you are new to reading this blog, you might be wondering "what is the usual percentage?"  The answer is . . . zero percent (0 %).

PUE: "Assault on Flat Rock"  +  lake loop + Pottery loop counter-clockwise; for the record setting cast of characters -- see above; 69.7 m.; 4hrs, 22min; 15.9 mph.

Jan tot: _3 rides; 162.6m.; 10 hrs, _7 min; 16.0 mph. 

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Jan-16: IR Lake Loop + Northside

Best comments of the day:

Snapper, explaining his triathlon cycling results:  "I'm only faster than those that are slower than me."
 ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... Oooo-kay.

LT, on Old Weaver, just before the climb up to NC-50, after I had mentioned something about the pace:  "I told Martin that I thought that it would be fast because so many will have 'cabin fever'.  Oh, you're Martin."
 ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... Last time I checked, I was still me.

Wave, upon reaching the top of Ghoston after 6 1/2 or 7 minutes:  "THAT was eye opening."
 ... ... ... ... ... No riding since Thanksgiving.  Still recovering from bronchitis. 
 ... ... ... ... I told him that have taken as long as 8 1/2 minutes. 
 ... ... ...  Even longer the time I bonked and Iceman was worried I might literally die.

I am confident that there were other "wise" comments, but I didn't hear them.
County Line report:

The first county line, on Old Creedmoor / Carpenter Pond was "neutralized".  Yeah!

The second county line, at the bridge across the Neuse River (submerged in Falls Lake ), seemed exciting, even from the very, very "rear seat" I had.  Six of us reached the descent to the lake; five were missing.  Wave and I dropped the other four in the "lead group" off our front.  Then, whoosh, the paceline train that included Snapper, Tito, Mallet, Mark and one other I can't recall, came by Wave and I so fast that Stew laughed.  I thought the five were "making a statement", but then thought they must be going for the CL.  However, despite many tutorials, none of the five seems to have recalled where the CL was, and upon reaching the lead four, the five pulled into line.  What I then saw was a mad dash to the CL - I hope no one was taking "big risks" such as a certain local cycling club sometimes does.  I later received a report that Lee was leading LT when LT saw - in his mirror - the Mallet pull out of line and start his rush.  Apparently LT had to work very hard to hold the Mallet off.  That's all I know.

The third county line, where Boyce Rd becomes Will Suitt, was a bit different.  Let's just say that when LT did not leave the stop-sign at Old Weaver with the lead rider, that lead rider was pretty sure he had the CL in the bag, but he did keep increasing his pace.  Good thing, too, because Snapper was coming hard, but had left it too late.  The "Old Master" snuck another one with a solo break-away.  The break-away was certainly helped by the fact that all the "fast guys" missed a key turn and started down the dead-end to the boat ramp, thus enabling me to catch and pass most / all of them.  A quick pace across Boyce while the fast-guys were probably still breathing hard from the previous CL, and possibly still discussing it too -- I wouldn't know -- I had plans. 

The fourth county line -- oh, yes, there was another CL -- we had to get back into Wake County -- was non-contestable because it is at a stop-sign. 

Back at the PUEn, several were discussing how they might be able to use technology to alert them and identify and place upcoming county lines.  I wish them luck -- they might even be able to market such a thing -- for example, from their google-groups-forum-thingy, it appears that half the members of a particular well-known north Raleigh cycling club / group don't know where the county lines are, either.  As I said, I wish them luck, but I'm betting that this old semi-Luddite of a Human GPS will still do a better job of knowing where most the CLs are (I never claimed to know where all of them are).
Eleven riders -- ties the all-time IR record from the Middleburgh Solstice last June.  Falls one short of the all-time turnout, though.  Twelve of us showed up for "Breakfast With Tito" .  Speaking of "Breakfast With Tito", Tito had an article about his experience in the Galapagos published .
A fun and SAFE time was had by all.  Well, maybe Wave wasn't having fun the last 9 miles or more -- but he seemed to be in good spirits back at the PUEn. 
I went out to ride another 20 miles.  Iva rode with me for the first ~ 3 miles, and the company was deeply appreciated.  He even decided to follow me down the first big drop to the bottom of Victory Church Rd, just so he could turn around and climb back up and get in a fifty mile ride.  I think that was more "hard-core" than the 20+ miles I did. 

I was really wiped out when I finished my ride.  Much worse than any of the rides at the end of December.  I suspect that the fast start -- 17.3 mph on my confuser when many took a flo-max and/or clothing removal break -- took a serious toll on me.  (I was going to pick on Snapper and the Duke here, but decided against it.)

PUE: (a) Lake Loop + Northside (w/ group), (b) Norwood-VctCh-CP-Coley-CP-MVC (solo); w/ Snapper, Wave, Duke, LT, Iva, Mallet, Smitty, LeeD, Tito, young Mark; 62.7 m.; 4hrs, 0min; 15.6 mph.

Jan tot: _2 rides; _92.9m.; _5 hrs, 45 min; 16.1 mph.

As mentioned in the text-proper, the first 13 or so miles I was avg'ing 17.3 mph.  I was avg'ing 16.7 when I turned onto Ghoston -- but I had promised Wave I would ride in with him, even if I dropped him on Ghoston.  Wave "went backward" on Ghoston.  I slowed and waited and then limped in with him -- the "irregulars" do NOT leave struggling riders alone.  My avg when I got to PUE after the group portion of the ride was 16.0.  "Irregulars" do NOT leave struggling riders alone!
Alternative report:

I really enjoyed the ride on Saturday, also, even though I spent a lot of time "off the back".

Early on I was going a bit slower than Harvey and BobS seemed to be wanting to ride -- I wanted to warm up the legs a little before pedaling hard. Although I never really got the slower, warm-up period I was hoping for, I did get to talk with "young Mark" early when we were on Carpenter Pond Rd. I think he was worried I was going to slide even further off the back. If the Gyro B's hadn't gotten in front of us by taking Nipper Rd out of PUE, I may have fallen even further back; but with the B's on the road, the front pace did eventually slow a bit, and everyone pretended to pay attention while I tried to buy time for the B's to get farther off our front.

I managed to get to the lead on much of Patterson when several took flo-max breaks or stopped to remove excess clothing (coincident with the stop to wait for Harvey and Stew). I decided that riding ahead, at a slightly slower pace than I would have done at that point if I were solo was the best way for me to continue warming-up and to stay in the midst of the group. However, by the top of the last climb on Patterson, everyone except Iva had passed me . . . then Iva noticed that we were again missing two people: this time it was Smitty and Stew. I decided to wait but Iva was worried that he'd never be able to bridge -- I figured I could use the downslope on Cheek near the lake if I had to bridge.

Luckily, the entire lead group of 8 stopped beside Plainview Church to wait for Smitty, Stew, and me. I didn't really check to see if people were eating or whatever, and since I only had my "emergency" fig newtons, I had no interest in stopping, and it seemed a good idea to again just keep going until the group swarmed around. I had some conversation(s) on Cheek, but other than Lt. Dave, I couldn't tell you now who they were with. When we noticed that we were missing five people, I said that if it was a flat, at least there were good flat-changers among the five, and we continued on. By about that time, I had noticed that Stew had no "umph" in his gitty-up. He and I spent a lot of time off the back together.

The paceline whooshing past toward the bridge on Cheek was (for lack of a better word) amusing -- Stew did actually laugh. The sprint, even from as far away as I was, looked entertaining.

Lt. Dave and I were shaking our heads about all the fast guys missing the turn onto Boyce Rd. Dave commented "you'd think they would have learned the course by now ... we've done this part enough times." When all the fast guys were suddenly behind me because of missing that turn, I developed my plan for Will Suitt Rd. I'm pretty sure Lt. Dave did not suspect anything because that is a flattish stretch and I can usually ride it pretty well. I didn't say much, but I was plotting for the entire 2 miles to the stop sign at Old Weaver. I had learned something from Tito a few weeks ago, and I was planning to give it a try on Lt. Dave for the CL; but Dave did not come with me away from the stop sign. Maybe he was chatting with others. I was so surprised he was not in my mirror or peripheral vision that I did a full turn to check -- no Dave. New plan: steadily increase the pace, but not so suddenly that anyone would be reminded there was a CL up ahead (good thing Iceman couldn't make the ride). Watching the mirror, increasing the pace, worried that either the Mallet or Harvey would come by rushing. Harvey says he decided to catch me when he saw I was off the front; he picked up his pace, but then realized I had picked up my pace . . . and when he saw the CL sign, he gave a couple hard pedal strokes but realized that unless I fell off my bike he could not catch me. Internalized fun. Another tutorial on County Line placement had been administered.

Some chatting with Smitty and Tito when they passed -- then I had to ask them to pick it up on the first shallow upslope on Northside Rd, but within 100 yards, the road was steeper and I drifted backward to join Stew.

On the later part of Northside and again on Cash, Stew and I slipped back, at least partly because we were chatting and looking around, and I know I failed to notice we had slipped off. Sometimes I wasn't sure if Stew was just hanging back with me, or if he was struggling. But by the time we got to NC-50, I knew Stew was struggling.

When we were going across the lake -- admiring all the ice its surface -- I found out from Lee that he had become a gran-daddy for the second time at 6:30 that morning, and had been up since 3:00 -- congrats to Lee & his family. I figured I would do the first bump-up from the lake with gusto and then just naturally drift backward on the never-ending mile-and-a-half to New Light. On that section, Stew and I had more conversation, and I promised him I would ride in with him, even if I dropped him on Ghoston.

I said my good-byes to all at the corner of Old Weaver and New Light because I figured it was at least possible that half the crew might be gone by the time I got to PUE.

I did let up on Ghoston after the first steep step because I couldn't see Stew in my mirror. He really did say "THAT was eye opening" when he got to the top of Ghoston. I have been there.

I enjoyed listening to the County Line Map App talk while prepping for my further 20+ miles.

Iva and I rode at an easy pace across Norwood, and in what seemed like seconds, we were to Macon Rd -- which should have been his turn -- but he decided to ride with me to Victory Church Rd and then to ride down to the bottom of the first valley on Vct Ch Rd. THAT was either a hard-core way to get to 50 miles, or he was being really nice. We know the latter is a given; I think the first also applies.

I had really achey legs when I finished my ride, and took at least 40 minutes to take off my damp tops, put the bike in the car, stretch, and eat a banana. I got in the car just in time to think that I heard Woody Durham (the UNC radio sports play-by-play announcer) say that UNC was behind by 14 pts at halftime. I couldn't believe that was correct, so I called Iva -- he confirmed the score.

I probably had less interplay conversation than most everyone else, but I had a good time on the ride Saturday. It seemed that everyone else did also.

One last thing. About 8 o'clock that night, I got a phone call from a "happy" Snapper. Apparently he and his wife were out to dinner with Smitty and his wife. Snaps said that he and Smitty had been discussing the ride and how much they had enjoyed it, and then Smitty said that he had no idea what my last name was, and Snapper said he couldn't remember, but knew that my e-mail address was a word-play off my last name. So Harvey called to ask me. Next morning, I sent Harvey an e-mail asking, now that he was no longer "happy", could he remember my last name.

My legs ached for much of Saturday night. I was glad for all the rain on Sunday as it gave me an excuse not ride, and let my legs recover.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Jan-15: First Ride of the Year: "TT"

A nice, warm, sunny day, without much wind.  I thought there was a possible "head-wind" both directions on Carpenter Pond.  I hope I didn't leave too much out on the course today.  Riding 40 miles with the "irregulars" tomorrow; then another 20. 

BJP side lot: the usual "TT" course:  DocN-Kemp-Virgil; 30.2 m.; 1hrs, 45min; 17.3 mph.

Jan tot: _1 rides; _30.2m.; _1 hrs, 45 min; 17.3 mph.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tito is a friend of mine

Actually, he is a friend of Iva. 

About all I know about Tito is that he fits the qualifications to be an "irregular".  That is, he is:

 (1) a reasonable human being, and
 (2) a SAFE cyclist. 

And except for once, he also has followed rule

 (3) no dropping the leader.  

Anyway, I guess Tito is a cycling friend of mine. 

He recently spent 4 months on the Galapagos Islands -- see his blog on the blog list to the right.  And, . . . , well,  an article he wrote was published recently -- that article tells the story so well, that without further ado . . .

The Galapagos debate gets hot; fire in the sea.
[Edit, Aug-31-2012:  The above link no longer works in that it takes one to the WRONG article.  Luckily, Tito also published the article on his "Galapagos Blog"; click here for the article.]

Some Info On Yanceyville Roads & Eats

Information Compliments of Gilbert Anderson

North Road Bicycles
North Road Bicycle Imports
PO Box 840
166 Court Square
Yanceyville, NC 27379

Thanks, Gilbert!

Comments on Roads:
Badgett sisters Parkway is called old NC62 around here and does predate the current modern road and roughly does to the same area; Burlington.

Blanche and Badgett Sisters are both excellent. The sisters has two one lane bridges along with several short steep curvy hills; like the Mountains without as much effort.

Blanche road actually has longer steeper hills but is about 60% or more dead flat.

There was a Bridge out on the south end of the sisters Parkway but it should be up by now and signs will route you around I am sure if needed.

Most roads are excellent for cycling (low traffic and few trucks) in Caswell and even though I am conservative on this I would eliminate except as short connectors these three: 

- All of NC86 except for short connectors (few chices south of Yanceyville till NC158 East breaks off).
- NC 62 South of Yanceyville (North is quite lightly traveled).
- NC158 West of Yanceyville (East is not great but better than most roads around Chapel Hill.

Everything else is generally fine.

Comments on Yanceyville eats:

As far as eats on the run it depends on timing. In order of preference:

Azariah's Store House- Snacks, chocolate, cake soup and sandwiches. Open lunch and Friday Saturday night for dinner. Located just off the Town Sq.

Yoders Store- Snacks freshed baked bread, Amish Sandwiches- Not sure of Hours. North end of town on east side of Highway 86 near Hardees.

Venice Itailian- Open everyday and night but no Sundays/ Italian Food and salad Bar-Located north end of town Strip center on Hiway 86

Rio Grande- Open 7 days and nights until fairly late- Located near downtown Strip center on Hiway 86

Foodlion-Hardees-McDonals-Great Wall Chinese-Subway all located in the Foodlion area North end of town on 86 open 7 days.

and finally The Yancey House- Some French Style rando eats and a touch of rural Louisiana style International cuisine for Lunch Dinner and sunday Brunch with a more sporadic schedule than McDonalds. If you were at the PBP you might east in a place like this as some riders take two hours for meals during PBP. Hiway 158 west 1/4 mile west of town.

Riders favorite for a quick stop: Marathon "C" Store- Snacks and Pizza -Fay and Fiyez put an International spin on Jerky, RC Colas and Moonpies. North of town Square on Main Street two blocks.

In Milton Lunch and dinner have to be Aunt Millies Pizza on what must be Church Street. They close early in the evening 8-9 PM.

Rules: Caswell county closes at noon on Saturday and reopens Monday early. Very few exceptions.

General comments on the proposed route:

A rando ride sounds great. I am with Branson to avoid (most of anyway) NC158 east of town but Adrian's route was designed (rarely in practice ) for daytime use and was made to be as direct as possiable. From central Raleigh it's easy to rack up 80-85 miles just to Yanceyville. North Raleigh is closer. It is not bad but during fishing tourneys, and morning rush hours it can be hectic. Not a good road at night. The good news is alternate routes while not direct are not more than 4-5 miles out of the way.

Your route looks pretty good. I haven't ridden around the spur to Lynn's Crossroads in a while but it was busy years ago. I would think a that being North of the lake might be safer and more scenic but you might have more recent info. A lot depends on timing when passing through., weekdays, weekends, early evening, after midnight which will be determined by both starting time and direction.

The French often start their 300 and 400 at odd times by our standards. We used to mimic them and start the 400 KM between 4 PM and 7 PM and the 300KM between 1PM and 1 PM. Everyone is fresh for the night riding and universally (fast or slow) finishing in the daylight with enough energy to have an after ride meal wit the early arrivals buying the slower rider s their finishing beer.

You might have a suggested starting time (s) going clockwise and another going counter listing the advantages of each time based on average speed. At least this would be good for a Permanent.

Let me know when you plan this.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

possible 300k routes

Opt 1:  Adrian's approach to Yanceyville.

Yanceyville 300k opt 1

Rejected because of US-158 section to get into Yanceyville. 

Opt 2:  NC-62 approach to Yanceyville.

Yanceyville 300k opt 2

No comment.

Opt 3:  Badgett Sisters Parkway approach to Yanceyville; flat-way return from Stovall.

Yanceyville 300k opt 3

Also sneaks into Virginia for a mile or two.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Where's He Been / A Study in Technique

This is the "payoff" for the "why haven't we seen ... / where have they been ..." series. 

This is more along the lines of a study of his technique. 

First, who are we talking about?

Paul, aka, "the Mallet", aka "Hothead"

Here is Paul in casual mid-ride mode, just enjoying the scenery.


Here is a photo of "the Mallet" in "concentration mode" before striking for the county line.

And here is an actual strike for the county line.

Notice the concentration.
Notice the smooth stroke and clean line.

At other times, he has to actually almost work for the line.
Look at THAT concentration.

Should anyone ever best him at a CL, the Mallet goes to a further level of evaluation of the lay of the court, er, land.
There is no comment worthy of this photo.


Paul is known for his special winter cycling headgear.  He is also known for his lampshade hat when the heat is on.

To what does all the above lead?

And . . .
Third US Singles Championship !!!

And . . . (Harvey insisted I end the post with the following photo):

Paul is awarded the Championship Trophy by the previous year's winner (and Paul's doubles partner) Jeff.

(Thanks to Jeff for his advice.  It is good to know that Paul's croquet friends and partners are as helpful as his cycling friends.  Jeff's commentary on the 2009 championship is here.  If you follow the link to read Jeff's commentary, and please do, be sure to read the last paragraph - it is one of the few parts a non-croquet knowledgeable person will understand.  (Paul assured me a few months ago that Jeff is one of very few Americans that write cogantly about croquet matches - I have to take his word for it.))

What are friends for?  (I can't get blogger to let me left-justify this text.)

I found this important informational link while including the link to the commentary on the national championship.  You MUST read the second, third and fourth paragraphs!