Thursday, March 18, 2010


Earlier this week, I sent Snapper and Smitty a link to a proposed route for an Equinox Century this coming Saturday.  (It doesn't seem desirable to do a route with 40 or 50 miles homebound heading into a southerly headwind.) 

Turned out Snapper was too LAZY (no wonder he is sometimes a Cheeta') to click on the link and look at the route or the mileage.  He sent me an e-mail asking "how long is the route? 168 miles?"

I responded:  "Look at the link."

He sent me another e-mail asking "how long is the route?  108 miles?"

I responded:  "Look at the link."  But also included the answer:  100.5 miles.

He sent an e-mail that he "had been trying to wear me down, and it worked."

I sent him the following message:  "I wonder what would happen if I "got lost" in the middle of Saturday's ride? Bwa..hahaha!"

Snapper sent back:  "If you got lost I would forever hold it against you. . . "

Which made me think of the following:

I did get lost once a few years ago ...

Year Month Date start / course comment _________Miles avg mph
2004 _Jul __24 _Neal School ___wrong turns ______44.2 3.23 _13.0

At the time, it was my LONGEST ride ever -- by 6 LONG miles. I thought I would NEVER finish -- it was soooo HOT, and sooo hilly.

That remained my longest ride until:
2004 _Oct ___9 _Blue Jay Pt. - Lake Loop w/ Lynn 53.4 3.39 _14.6

The course on Jul-24?
Was supposed to be:  essentially the Creedmoor-Grissom route.  I had a very vague idea of the route.
I didn't have a cue sheet.  But had ridden some of the roads with Lynn many years before when we lived in Creedmoor.
I missed the turn onto Pope Rd.  Si I turned off Brassfield when I got to Lawrence Rd.  That would have been okay.
But when I got to the Lawrence / Horseshoe corner, I didn't want to ride DOWN the big hill on Lawrence.
I figured that it was just going DOWN to the lake, again.  And I didn't want to have climb back UP.
So I went the direction with the shallower downslope.  In other words, I turned right onto Horseshoe Rd. 
I had a very vague idea of the route, but certainly not the road names.
When I got to Pope Rd, I knew I was cooked.  Cooked physically by the heat and mentally cooked because I going backwards.
But at least I knew how to get back to civilization: 
reverse the course, i.e., Pope to Brassfield (into Creedmoor) to Northside to ... to Cheek to Patterson to NC-98 to Neal School.
I had to stop on Patterson at the top of one of the endless killer hills.  In the scorching sun. 
I may have run out of water.

I don't think I've been lost since.  I might not have known where I was, but I wasn't lost.
And, on that day, I drove the course afterward, and really learned where I had intended to go.
Shortly thereafter, I discovered the beauty of electronic maps.

Last weekend, LT was recalling last year's Jul-03 Kerr Lake Loop on a route I mostly ripped off from ... MikeD's teeny tiny map on RTP.  (A few months later, we introduced MikeD to "Stovall Mtn", so maybe a "fair trade"?)
After we crossed the Kerr Dam, I knew we had to take the first available left, but I wasn't sure we were turning onto the correct road.
As LT noted last week, the road was quite narrow and seemed a bit sketchy.
Someone asked "are we sure this is the correct road?"
My response: "No, but let's take it anyway."
A few miles later, when we got to the next turn, we knew we had been on the correct road.

We hadn't been lost -- we just didn't know where we were, or if we were on the correct road.


  1. Which reminds me to always have my buddy Big Wave Dave on speed-dial...never know when I'll need his trusty GPS!
    Cheetah and proud.

    WV = purdela

  2. Given Big Wave Dave's history with his GPS, and given that you were a "passenger" on at least one of bwd's gps adventures, I would think that you'd rather take your chances with me, even if you were sure that I was purposefully leading you astray.

    Or call your other buddy, Smitty. At least Smitty was able to navigate his way to Oxford when he abandoned the second running of the Hurdle Mills 200k last October.

    On the other hand, Smitty was part of the sub-group that missed two turns on the recent Bearpond-Bobbitt fiasco, er ride. Maybe the sub-group was following the GPS advice of someone else?