Northeast - Bloomin Metric 2008 impressions
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Anybody do the ride yesterday?
We drove up from NYC and had been under the impression that the route was flat. Au contraire, mon frere. Rolling hills the entire 100K, including a few pain-inducing-gasp-for-air-stand-on-pedals monsters. The downhills were downright scary which made it fun - I clocked about 38mph a few times!
On the downside I accumulated enough pollen on my clothes to feed an entire beehive, and we started late and ended up riding the last 7 miles in the rain. arrgh. But we finished!
Ride was well organized, especially the coordination with the police.
05-19-08, 05:38 AM
Who told you that this ride was flat? There definitely was a lot of climbing. I am used to most of the climbs since the route is on my home roads. My Garmin 305 registered over 3500 feet of climbing. Beautiful day at least before it rained. Glad you enjoyed yourself.
I took Metro North with a lot of other city cyclists. Who knew Grand Central closed at night? Good thing we managed to find a door that opened early because we only had a few minutes to purchase tickets and find the track for the 5:35 am train to East Norwalk.
I really had no idea what to expect but I never envisioned those hills. In past years I'd completed the Montauk metric, and nearly completed the full Montauk Century. I did the NYC Century so I just presumed the Bloomin Metric would be a piece of cake.
So much for that idea. I bailed at "Indecision Point" and took the 75 Km route back to the start. Breaking on the downhill, I was able to keep my maximum speed down to a modest 32.5 :eek:
Caught the 2:30 train back to Grand Central. Rain had already begun by then. I, and who knows how many other cyclists, had to stand out on these long steel loading ramps until they were able to align the last three cars in place for us to board the bikes.
All in all, Metro North was far more accommodating than LIRR has been with the Montauk Century. They waived bike restrictions for the day, no permit required, and rolled out some Snack cars to carry all the bikes. I just strapped my bike to a bar, with a bungee cord, and took a seat. They even made an unscheduled stop at East Norwalk so we could arrive early.
The ride was great and I'll definitely return. I think the only downside was that different routes were on different cue sheets. When I switched routes I didn't have a cue sheet for the 75 so I had to work a bit to find my way back. Next time I'll know better.
05-19-08, 09:40 AM
This was my first Bloomin' Metric. It was a great time. Any ride of significant size in Fairfield County will have hills. The hills on this ride challenged me, but it was worth it. I hit 36mph on one of the downhills :eek:
I did the 75k and arrived at the start/stop about 1/2 hour before the rain. I had been watching the forecast early that morning to decide the best start time.
Overall this ride is very well organized and staffed. The cue sheets and maps were excellent, almost not needed since the course was so well marked (one sign said: Slow down, One lane bridge ahead with sand). The local police kept us moving through traffic. The food stops were stocked with PB&Js , oranges, bananas, tasty cookies, water and drinks. Plenty of port-a-potties too. Big thanks to all involved in putting this ride together and staffing it! Looking forward to next year.
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