I AM ALIVE!
I did my first Brevet yesterday and I am pretty proud of it. It was a 200K and was 2.5 hours from my house. I left at 4 am in thunder, lighting, and some pretty heavy rainfall.
There were 40 – 50 riders. I saw 2 recumbents and no tandems. I was surprised at the variety of gear. Some guys looked like they were going for a ride around the block, no bag, no rain gear, 1 little light, etc. Other people had huge packs, rain gear, 4 lights, helmet covers, etc…
We started in the rain and I figured my best move would be to follow the experienced riders out of town while I could, then rely on the cue sheet when it started breaking up. 3 turns into the ride everyone started turning around saying we were going the wrong way. I should have stopped and check my cue sheet, but I didn’t want to get left behind.
LESSON 1: Don’t rely on ANYONE else without checking YOUR cue. Esp. not the croud!
Turns out one guy (a super nice guy, by the way) had the OLD route in his GPS, not the new one with the detour for construction. BONUS MILES right of the bat!
Once back on the right route, I rode my pace. I had a couple guys with me and we chatted for about 20 min, then one guy left me in the dust and I left the other guy behind. It wasn’t a jerk move, just everyone riding their own pace.
LESSON2: Things fall apart in the rain
My headlight wouldn’t turn off. I had it mounted under my handlebars upside down. All the water ran to the switch and shorted it out. I ended up riding that way for an hour, then pulling the battery and putting the light and battery in my bag.
I have to 3100mAh batteries that I use to charge my iPhone and GPS. I know, extra weight, redundant, etc, but I am okay with it. I didn’t have the ziplock sealed properly and one of the batteries quit working.
For some reason, the magnet on my peddle for my cadence sensor fell off. The ziptie is still there, but no magnet!
The other big destruction from the rain was my “sit point.” I didn’t even think about re-applying Butt’r until half way between Ctrl 2 (62mi) and Ctrl3 (90 mi). I re-applied at 90, but I am VERY uncomfortable today. In the rain, I should have reapplied at ALL ctrl points!
On a bumpy road, I lost a tail light. I went back and got it, but it was broke, wouldn’t light up. I reattached it so it would stay put. It didn’t, it bounced off again and when I picked it up, it worked.
LESSON3: I am a flatlander!
I never understood people here saying they were getting climbing gears. My compact chain ring lets me climb just fine! Ahem…. I discovered I had never met a hill! I saw the giant spike on the profile prior to the ride. When I got there, I was tired, but figured I could tackle it. I peddled my heart out and thought I had almost made it, then I turned the corner and realized I was just on the bottom ¼ of it. Did you know walking up hill in cycling shoes sucks? I do!
MVP of the ride: I LOVE my Areo bars! I love having an extra position. I love being able to move through the 20 mph headwind. A close second would be my Cannondale wind/rain shell.
SHOULD HAVE BROUGHT: Less suff. Homeyba is right. Pack light. Would have traded two tubes (I had 3) for a dry pair of socks!
I loved the ride. I rode solo mostly because people weren’t riding my pace. I had company the last 30 miles and was glad for it. I was proud of my time and how good I felt (except my butt) when I was done.
Thanks to everyone who answered my stupid questions about brevets! I at least had a clue going into this!