Labour Day Long Weekend - March 9 - 12
Saturday - You Would Have to be Crazy 200K
The "You Would Have to be Crazy" Randonneuring event is a collection of randonneuring events of different lengths. Riders can choose from the 200K, 300K, 400K, or 600K starting on the Saturday, and then do a 100K or 200K on Sunday if they want.
We debated about a longer event, but opted to go for the 200K. We rode the 200K two years ago on singles, but this time we decided to do it on our tandem. If I could make it on our singles when I was still recovering from DVT, I figured we could handle it on our tandem now!
I had 3 goals with this ride: 1) Ride my age to celebrate my birthday. 2) Ride a century for March in the Century-a-Month challenge (to make a century in each month for the past 18 months). 3) Ride the 200K to get our 3rd randonneuring event this year.
This 200K event is sneaky. The first 100K are quite easy because the general lay of the land is downhill to a city 100 km away. Then we turn around and climb back up. To add to the challenge, we also had a tailwind on the way out, and headwind on the way back.
We covered the first 100K in 4.5 hours ... we were cruising! But we finished the event in 10:50 ... we were not cruising on the way back!! It was definitely a bit of a slog on the way back.
There was a decent group of cyclists doing the events so we had cyclists within sight for some of the event, and encountered them again at the turn-around point and at the end. This event is also lightly supported, and we were provided with a large bowl of pasta at the end as well as several other food choices. That pasta hit the spot!
At the turn-around point something rather unexpected happened ... an old Rolls Royce vehicle pulled up! It had been a bus in its early years and had been converted to an Egg Merchant delivery vehicle in 1952. (Yes, we have photos)
The area is quite scenic ... rolling hills, forests, pasture lands. And the weather was beautiful. When we did this event 2 years ago, it poured rain until just before we started, it was so socked in with fog that we couldn't see any of the scenery at all, and then we were followed back by a storm which nailed us with a bit of rain and some of the other riders with hail. This year we had blue skies and sunshine. The temperature started cool, and warmed up to about 21C in the middle of the day.
Right toward the end of the ride the temperature dropped (the low that night was 8C) and the combination of the headwind and drop in temperature left us feeling a little chilled. Good thing we had a lovely room with a heater and hot shower!!