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Old 07-10-08, 10:23 PM   #1
Mash Master
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Stp

I wanted to wish all of you the best for STP! Have a great time, I can't wait to read your trip reports.

Ride safe and have fun!
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Old 07-11-08, 06:28 AM   #2
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Thanks Dave, I am shooting for the one day ride. bad news is 93 in Portland on Sat and good news is that we have a N to NW wind 8mph all weekend. I am going to take it slow and hydrate early and often. See ya all out there):
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Old 07-11-08, 08:20 AM   #3
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Hey, good luck all! My brother, a recent Seattle newbie from Detroit is attempting his first one day STP! If you see him on an orange Kona Kapu, give him a good "allez!"

Cheers!
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Old 07-11-08, 10:03 AM   #4
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I'm doing my 1st STP and the 1 day. They're now predicting 95 in PDX tomorrow...I'll be the puddle of sweat on a blue Vanilla.
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Old 07-11-08, 10:03 AM   #5
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Thanks!

Tailwinds, woohoo!
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Old 07-11-08, 10:28 AM   #6
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The heat's gonna be a killer, but at least it's tailwinds the whole ride!

I'll be wearing my Team Bio-Rad Laboratories jersey, and I'm doing the one-day.
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Old 07-11-08, 01:48 PM   #7
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Anyone else camping outside at Centralia college (2 day riders obviously)?
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Old 07-11-08, 05:06 PM   #8
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Poprad, I'm more than likely doing the 2-day, but it would be nice to catch up with you sometime to compare notes on our Raleighs. I recall you are also doing Cycle Oregon? So if not STP, then CO perhpas. Vamanos muchachos!

Bib 2009, BTW. Probably stopping at River Oaks RV in Vader unless a tailwind pushes me all the way to Holladay Park.
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Old 07-11-08, 06:17 PM   #9
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Thanks Mash Master. Looks like it's going to be a hot one again this year!
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Old 07-11-08, 06:52 PM   #10
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Good luck all! I'll probably be at the Western Chehalis/Yelm Trail junction cheering you on after I get back south from dropping off a rider!

Rubber side down
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Old 07-11-08, 07:04 PM   #11
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PDX TV stations weather forecast- pick the one you like best.
http://www.katu.com/weather
http://www.koin.com/weather/default.aspx
http://weather.kgw.com//auto/kgw/OR/Portland.html
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Old 07-11-08, 11:36 PM   #12
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Man I Wish I Could Be There! Have Fun! Ill Be Thinkin Of Ya While Im Raising Money For The 8 Lakes Leg Aches!
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Old 07-12-08, 07:33 PM   #13
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"9,500 riders take off on annual Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic" ~Seattle Times

Will probably never do this ride but YEA for those who do
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Old 07-12-08, 09:02 PM   #14
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Waiting for CliftonGK1 to call soon...
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Old 07-12-08, 10:50 PM   #15
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I just got home...StP rocked! Great course support, hotter n' hell, grooving vibe all day. Wonderful time. Kudos to the organizers, very well executed event.
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Old 07-12-08, 10:53 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poprad View Post
I just got home...StP rocked! Great course support, hotter n' hell, grooving vibe all day. Wonderful time. Kudos to the organizers, very well executed event.
Yo Mark aka "Poprad", you 'da man!!!! Great ride today, congrats on your first 200 miler in one day and a very good time espcially considering the heat factor.

Pat yourself on the back my friend.


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Old 07-13-08, 03:17 PM   #17
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Congrats!
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Old 07-13-08, 06:18 PM   #18
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After a lot of dallying around in Portland, we rolled back to Seattle a bit after lunch today.

We finished in 13'45" with zero drama other than my partner getting into a dehydration/bonk cycle for about an hour during the Hwy 30 stretch. We could have come in sub-13' very easily as we were really riding conservatively and we had the bonk delay. Major props to my ride partner, this was only his fifth ride total of the season! He joined me on three of my road training rides and on long mountain bike ride then went out and did a double century on a hot day. Being a fast marathon runner probably helped...

It was nice to do but I doubt I'd do it again. Too many people and the last section into Portland is pretty bad other than the nice wide shoulder.

The best part of the ride was rolling out about 10min early and cruising down the center of Lk WA Blvd at dawn with the bright pink sunrise over the Cascade with no cars or car noise and only a couple other bikers. Followed closely by the cool finishing tunnel at Lloyd Park with all the cheering people.

The worst part was having to get my bag and get back on my bike and riding a few miles back across the river to my hotel in RiverPlace (which is a nice spot).

Saw a pretty bad accident involving a tandem and RR tracks, it looked like an older woman broke her collarbone from the way they were loading her into an ambulance. Also saw a guy on a high-end carbon bike plow into another guy on a high-end carbon(Cervelo SL I think) and go down in a tangle while pulling into the rest stop at Centralia. Surprised if nothing got broken in that one, funny though...

Then there was the 'large' woman riding with mesh see-through tights and the very visible red thong... Lot's of other kooky bike stuff to be seen for sure.

Congrats to all the other finishers both one & two days!

Last edited by Old_Crow; 07-13-08 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 07-14-08, 01:55 AM   #19
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Congrats!! I'm hoping to do it next year after a hiatus. Tail winds rock.

We got odd weather in CA. My ride started at a very very pleasant 60-62 degrees, we peaked at only maybe 90, possibly 95... and then had a brutal hailstorm, followed by rain.
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Old 07-14-08, 12:51 PM   #20
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My wife and I rode our first STP this year, in two days. The heat was more than we expected, but we made it through. Vader for the overnight (about 125 miles), then on to Portland on Sunday. Major Kudos to the ladies at the Vader Lions Club, they made it a wonderful overnight stop.

Not so many kudos to the Portland Wheelmen on packing the bikes in the rental trucks to ship them to Seattle Friday. I'm sure I am in the minority, but I spent part of Friday night fixing shipping damage. Nothing major, but still annoying.

May have to try this as a one day ride next time.
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Old 07-14-08, 05:15 PM   #21
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The Stats

206.66 miles
13h 33m 13s rolling time
14h 45m total time
15.2mph rolling average

The alarm went off at 3:00am and I was reasonably well rested with about 5 hours of sleep behind me. My driver heard the alarm clock and was already awake and sitting up by the time I made it out to the living room. I shambled over to the bathroom and started getting prepped up with all my pre-ride goobings:
- sunscreen
- chamois creme
- foot powder
- body glide
Finally I finished up and did a double check on the bike gear, then decided it was time to roll. I grabbed my bounce bag and we headed out the door. With the 520 bridge closed it took a few extra minutes to get to the starting line. We rolled to the U-district QFC around 4:45am and I was packed out and ready to roll. I made my way about a half mile to the start line, dropped off my baggage at the Portland truck, and headed to the start line. As I looked down to reset my computer, I saw that in disobeying the cardinal rule (don't screw with your stuff 3 days before an event) I had neglected to swap my wheel magnet off my generator wheel and onto my stock one. Thankfully the guys at the Pedro's tent had plenty of extras; they hooked me up and I joined the tail end of the 5:05am start wave.

The first 5 miles were effing sketch.

Many people don't even know that there is a 5 o'clock in the morning, much less are they awake and riding their bike down a winding chattery hill with about 400 other riders. Between a dozen people dropping their bottles or bouncing them out of their cages (spend the $$ and get an effing cage that keeps your bottle secure when you hit a damned expansion joint!) and losing bananas and tyvek jackets and arm warmers out of their jersey pockets, and riders that didn't signal/call that they were slowing, and the guy that just stopped in the middle of the street to adjust his shoe, the first 5 miles were a white-knuckled festival of trying not to crap my shorts. I will hand it to the police though; they kept the traffic crossings blocked and waved the rider packs through. It was very nice to have that for about the first 25 miles. Good job, officers!

So things settled down after we got out of Seattle proper and people started to thin out into a line along the roadway rather than just a giant scary mass of sketchiness. Everyone began to settle into their pace for the first half of the ride. I found myself at a consistent 18mph pace and very comfortable with it, so I decided that unless I felt that I was over-exerting myself, I'd stick with it. This turned out to be much to my advantage, because I passed quite a few people (while still getting put to shame by the serious pacelines.) I rolled into the 25 mile stop feeling really good about the 180 miles to come. I skipped the 20 minute wait for the port-o-johns, went straight for the water station and got a free Orange-Ginger NUUN from the company rep. It goes really well in orange Accelerade.

Watered up and Nuun'd up, I was out the gates in under 5 minutes for the first stop. I peeled an Accel Gel and a Clif Bar and kept going. I was very careful to keep the calories around 300/hour for the first 75 miles and then back to the 200-250/hour range for the rest of the ride because of the heat... but back to the 25 mile marker... Things were clogged up going through the cities on the way to the next majour stop, but it wasn't anything eventful. People jockeyed for position at the stop lights, (more) people lost their effing water bottles, and everyone was busy finding their "all-day" pace. There was a lot of "on your left"-ing going on, and for the most part people were well-behaved. A few paceliners were acting like the STP was the Giro d'Italia, throwing their gel and bar wrappers on the ground, and tossing their tyvek jackets into people's front shrubbery as if the 3 ounces was going to slow them down, or the resident of the house would forever treasure the jacket as though Tom Boonen signed it and left it gift wrapped for them. There weren't too many of these people, but I saw at least 10 people chuck their jackets along the Lake Washington shoreline residential stretch, barely 10 miles into the ride. The "overboarding" of stuff seemed to stop somewhere after Renton; either because I was left in the dust by the people doing it, or they ran out of stuff to throw on the road. I mostly skipped the rest stops until the 60-something miler station. I refilled my water bottles and that was it. Finally, I hit up the mini-stop in some town I don't remember the name of. It was hot as Hades, so I pulled off and took a sub-10 minute quick stop: Hit the port-o-cans (I was drinking enough, since I still had to whiz, even in that heat) re-**** the shorts with chamois creme, and re-**** myself with sunscreen... zoom, I was back on the road after letting a couple packs go by and finding a break in the traffic to blend into.
Ah, the traffic... It was getting late enough in the day that the first waves of 2-day riders were catching the slower waves of 1-day riders. The roads were getting crowded again, but it wasn't a hassle. Between riders being well spaced until we hit a stoplight and the Goldwing Club patrolling the course it was busy, but not a bung-up rush hour scenario. So, the remainder of the ride into Centrailia was uneventful. Rolling into the Centralia campus, we were greeted by a guy on a megaphone: "Welcome to Centralia! Showers and port-o-sans on your left. One day riders, there is food on the right. The beer garden is now open. 2 day riders, to the left. 1 day riders, stay to the right. Welcome to Centralia! Showers..." (and it continued ad infinitum) I propped my bike, stood in line for a much appreciated turkey and cheese sandwich and some watermelon slices, refilled my bottles, and chowed down. I tried to post an update to FaceBook via my phone, but I must have bumped the buttons and turned things back on while riding because it wouldn't even boot up... the battery was totally dead. Oh well. I goobed up with more sunscreen, dropped some chamois creme down the front of my bibs and groped it around (much to the dismay of many onlookers,) hopped back on my whip and started pedalling again.

101.4 miles behind me, 06h 40m rolling time. 91 degrees, and there's no shade. There were still plenty of 2-day riders on the course as we cruised out of Centralia, because for the next 60 miles towns had tent and RV encampments. People stayed in Centralia, then another 30 miles down the road in Vader, and another 20 down the road, and another 10 or 15 past that. (I can't understand what the deal is with stopping at 160 miles. Just finish the last 45 miles.) Anyhow, things started to <b>really</b> thin out for the next 3 towns as riders
dropped like crazy. 100 miles and we lost 60% of the pack. 130 miles and another half of the remaining riders were down for the night. At 150 and 160 miles we lost the rest of the 2-day crew, just before the Oregon border. This is where you could see the separation between the hardcore semi-pros, the finishers, and the I-hope-I-cans. 165 or so miles in and we hit the bridge over the Columbia Gorge. It's 95 degrees, there was a hot headwind blowing down the bridge, and it's a half-mile long climb up the narrow lane. The semi-pros were still in strong form; paceline clacking down gears and just zooming up the bridge. The finshers geared down and grunted it out at around 12mph, while others did not fare so well. Quads cramped, calves knotted, some guy leaned over the rail and threw up. The next 35 miles were low rollers along the side of the the Oregon highway (39, I think.) It's odd cycling on a 4 lane freeway, but in Oregon it's even a painted, marked bike lane. So for the next 25 miles I was just fine grinding along the highway at about 14.5mph, which had become my new average for the final 45 miles of the ride. At 178 miles in there was a mini-stop and I bought a 24oz bottle of water.

With a cold refill, I was recharged and ready to tackle the final stretch... I thought. I was talking with a guy for about 10 miles, and we were cracking jokes and yapping, and all of a sudden I started getting fuzzy in the head. We were doing about 17mph, and I was starting to go into debt on all systems. I apologized and backed off the pace while he sped off and I drifted back to 14.5mph again. My head started to clear after slamming a couple of Accel Gels and a half bottle of water. I couldn't remember the last time I peed. It might have been at the 150s stop. I was still sweating, so I wasn't going to stroke out... but I was running low. My body physically couldn't process any more food because of the heat and exertion. Swallowing was getting a little painful. My body couldn't take another Key Lime Accel Gel, and I might be nearing the last Clif Bar or loaded bottle of Accelerade I could tolerate. I looked at the computer and I was at 189 miles. The city was visible, and I was getting down to the last hour in the saddle. Mentally I felt renewed. Team pacelines (Toyota/United, and Gerk's Alpine Hut) passed me as I was chugging along with my head hanging a bit, and gave me a thumbs up and said "finish strong, man. Almost there. You can get this." That was all the encouragement I needed to keep rolling, until mile 198.

Mile 198. 5 miles left, and somebody put a hill in our way. Sweet mother of Miguel Indurain, this hill was just uncalled for: It was winding, it was chattery pavement, and it was steep grade for it's short and torturous third of a mile length. We jammed our way to the top of it, continued up into the downtown Portland metro area, and managed to miss a turn... About 7 blocks later we noticed that there are no other cyclists in bib numbers, and there's no Dan Henry marks. We stopped, checked out maps, were still lost and asked a kid where the hell our street was. His answer was "waaaay down that way you missed it. Just go like, a mile or something and it's after you cross Everett.) So we turned around and I wasn't sure I was going to make it. The tank was empty. I was fueled on fumes at that point, and I don't know how I made it over the line. We found our turn, managed not to get lost again (I think the bus we got behind was over the Dan Henry marker and that's why we missed it first time around.) Finally we rolled into the park. I vaguely remember hearing "This is [REAL NAME] of Redmond, Washington crossing the 1-day finish line!" from the PA system as I rolled past the volunteers handing out the
1-day finisher patches. I got some kudos from people already in the park who had passed me in the last 15 miles as I made my way to a bench by the kids' fountain. I took off my shoes and socks, ate another Clif Bar and Accel Gel, and then stood in the fountain for a while, letting the cold water massage my numb feet and aching legs. Eventually I got my phone to boot up long enough to get Donna's phone number, bum some dude's phone and call her to come and find me. We hung out at the park until I could get my legs underneath myself to go and get my backpack (we got there with 2 minutes to spare until closing time!) and then ride the couple miles back to her place. I had a shower, we rode to the Lucky Labrador Brewpub for dinner, then we came back and I crashed until 7:00am. The next morning we had breakfast at Genie's, rode the MUP along the river for a ways down to the busses, and I headed back to home.


Extra thanx to:
- Donna, who let me shower and crash at her house, showed me two awesome eateries in Portland, and generally treated me far better than someone who smelled as bad as I did really deserved.
- Cascade Bike Club for the ride organization
- The Pedro's guys for giving me a wheel magnet
- The Goldwing riders club for mechanical support and route security
- The police who stood in the sun in every town and directed traffic for us
- The townsfolk who sat on their front lawns and cheered us on
- The townsfolk who set up garden hose "misting stations" to ride through
- The guy who asked to have his paceline draft me for a bit, and offered to slow down and pace me for a while. (Dude, you rock!)
- Everyone who passed me in the last 20 miles and said something encouraging.

3 middle fingers to:
- Everyone who threw their garbage along the course. How'd you like it if I rode past your manicured lawn and threw my trash on it?
- Everyone who pissed somewhere other than a toilet. Seriously, people. There's port-o-lets every 15 miles or so. Plus 7-11's and gas stations. Nobody grows hedges in your toilet; do them the courtesy of not pissing on their shrubs.
- Wheelsuckers. Yeah, you know who you are. No announcements; I just look back and there you are with your nose planted in my butt crack. Here's a joke for you: How many times can I fart on purpose? A whole freaking lot. Who's laughing now?

Overall, it was a good ride. I don't think I'll do it again, because it is such a huge number of people. Like other events, it's gotten too large (IMO). Other people love it and come back year after year for the jovial atmosphere, etc. I felt a bit crowded for much of the ride. It was a worthwhile experience, though.

Congratulations to everyone who rode.

Last edited by donnamb; 07-14-08 at 11:21 PM. Reason: Changed restaurant name - Clifton was tired!
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Old 07-14-08, 08:05 PM   #22
Mash Master
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Great report, Good job
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Old 07-14-08, 09:56 PM   #23
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hey all. I pulled out the one day too. 12:05 rolling time mostly solo. I joined a few loose groups but could never really get into a team steady. It was very hot but I hydrated well and I felt strong and actually increased my speed in the last 50 m. I rode the second day with my wife and her friend from Vader where we camped for the night. I am really pretty new to rides like this but I can really see how riding in a group can be a big advantage. I almost always ride and train by myself so I was fine just doing the ride by myself but it would be a fun experience with others.
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Old 07-14-08, 10:34 PM   #24
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So you use chemical weapons on wheelsuckers too, huh? Works better if you've had some intestine bypassed. Sounds like you had a pretty good ride though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
The Stats

206.66 miles
13h 33m 13s rolling time
14h 45m total time
15.2mph rolling average

The alarm went off at 3:00am and I was reasonably well rested with about 5 hours of sleep behind me. My driver heard the alarm clock and was already awake and sitting up by the time I made it out to the living room. I shambled over to the bathroom and started getting prepped up with all my pre-ride goobings:
- sunscreen
- chamois creme
- foot powder
- body glide
Finally I finished up and did a double check on the bike gear, then decided it was time to roll. I grabbed my bounce bag and we headed out the door. With the 520 bridge closed it took a few extra minutes to get to the starting line. We rolled to the U-district QFC around 4:45am and I was packed out and ready to roll. I made my way about a half mile to the start line, dropped off my baggage at the Portland truck, and headed to the start line. As I looked down to reset my computer, I saw that in disobeying the cardinal rule (don't screw with your stuff 3 days before an event) I had neglected to swap my wheel magnet off my generator wheel and onto my stock one. Thankfully the guys at the Pedro's tent had plenty of extras; they hooked me up and I joined the tail end of the 5:05am start wave.

The first 5 miles were effing sketch.

Many people don't even know that there is a 5 o'clock in the morning, much less are they awake and riding their bike down a winding chattery hill with about 400 other riders. Between a dozen people dropping their bottles or bouncing them out of their cages (spend the $$ and get an effing cage that keeps your bottle secure when you hit a damned expansion joint!) and losing bananas and tyvek jackets and arm warmers out of their jersey pockets, and riders that didn't signal/call that they were slowing, and the guy that just stopped in the middle of the street to adjust his shoe, the first 5 miles were a white-knuckled festival of trying not to crap my shorts. I will hand it to the police though; they kept the traffic crossings blocked and waved the rider packs through. It was very nice to have that for about the first 25 miles. Good job, officers!

So things settled down after we got out of Seattle proper and people started to thin out into a line along the roadway rather than just a giant scary mass of sketchiness. Everyone began to settle into their pace for the first half of the ride. I found myself at a consistent 18mph pace and very comfortable with it, so I decided that unless I felt that I was over-exerting myself, I'd stick with it. This turned out to be much to my advantage, because I passed quite a few people (while still getting put to shame by the serious pacelines.) I rolled into the 25 mile stop feeling really good about the 180 miles to come. I skipped the 20 minute wait for the port-o-johns, went straight for the water station and got a free Orange-Ginger NUUN from the company rep. It goes really well in orange Accelerade.

Watered up and Nuun'd up, I was out the gates in under 5 minutes for the first stop. I peeled an Accel Gel and a Clif Bar and kept going. I was very careful to keep the calories around 300/hour for the first 75 miles and then back to the 200-250/hour range for the rest of the ride because of the heat... but back to the 25 mile marker... Things were clogged up going through the cities on the way to the next majour stop, but it wasn't anything eventful. People jockeyed for position at the stop lights, (more) people lost their effing water bottles, and everyone was busy finding their "all-day" pace. There was a lot of "on your left"-ing going on, and for the most part people were well-behaved. A few paceliners were acting like the STP was the Giro d'Italia, throwing their gel and bar wrappers on the ground, and tossing their tyvek jackets into people's front shrubbery as if the 3 ounces was going to slow them down, or the resident of the house would forever treasure the jacket as though Tom Boonen signed it and left it gift wrapped for them. There weren't too many of these people, but I saw at least 10 people chuck their jackets along the Lake Washington shoreline residential stretch, barely 10 miles into the ride. The "overboarding" of stuff seemed to stop somewhere after Renton; either because I was left in the dust by the people doing it, or they ran out of stuff to throw on the road. I mostly skipped the rest stops until the 60-something miler station. I refilled my water bottles and that was it. Finally, I hit up the mini-stop in some town I don't remember the name of. It was hot as Hades, so I pulled off and took a sub-10 minute quick stop: Hit the port-o-cans (I was drinking enough, since I still had to whiz, even in that heat) re-**** the shorts with chamois creme, and re-**** myself with sunscreen... zoom, I was back on the road after letting a couple packs go by and finding a break in the traffic to blend into.
Ah, the traffic... It was getting late enough in the day that the first waves of 2-day riders were catching the slower waves of 1-day riders. The roads were getting crowded again, but it wasn't a hassle. Between riders being well spaced until we hit a stoplight and the Goldwing Club patrolling the course it was busy, but not a bung-up rush hour scenario. So, the remainder of the ride into Centrailia was uneventful. Rolling into the Centralia campus, we were greeted by a guy on a megaphone: "Welcome to Centralia! Showers and port-o-sans on your left. One day riders, there is food on the right. The beer garden is now open. 2 day riders, to the left. 1 day riders, stay to the right. Welcome to Centralia! Showers..." (and it continued ad infinitum) I propped my bike, stood in line for a much appreciated turkey and cheese sandwich and some watermelon slices, refilled my bottles, and chowed down. I tried to post an update to FaceBook via my phone, but I must have bumped the buttons and turned things back on while riding because it wouldn't even boot up... the battery was totally dead. Oh well. I goobed up with more sunscreen, dropped some chamois creme down the front of my bibs and groped it around (much to the dismay of many onlookers,) hopped back on my whip and started pedalling again.

101.4 miles behind me, 06h 40m rolling time. 91 degrees, and there's no shade. There were still plenty of 2-day riders on the course as we cruised out of Centralia, because for the next 60 miles towns had tent and RV encampments. People stayed in Centralia, then another 30 miles down the road in Vader, and another 20 down the road, and another 10 or 15 past that. (I can't understand what the deal is with stopping at 160 miles. Just finish the last 45 miles.) Anyhow, things started to <b>really</b> thin out for the next 3 towns as riders
dropped like crazy. 100 miles and we lost 60% of the pack. 130 miles and another half of the remaining riders were down for the night. At 150 and 160 miles we lost the rest of the 2-day crew, just before the Oregon border. This is where you could see the separation between the hardcore semi-pros, the finishers, and the I-hope-I-cans. 165 or so miles in and we hit the bridge over the Columbia Gorge. It's 95 degrees, there was a hot headwind blowing down the bridge, and it's a half-mile long climb up the narrow lane. The semi-pros were still in strong form; paceline clacking down gears and just zooming up the bridge. The finshers geared down and grunted it out at around 12mph, while others did not fare so well. Quads cramped, calves knotted, some guy leaned over the rail and threw up. The next 35 miles were low rollers along the side of the the Oregon highway (39, I think.) It's odd cycling on a 4 lane freeway, but in Oregon it's even a painted, marked bike lane. So for the next 25 miles I was just fine grinding along the highway at about 14.5mph, which had become my new average for the final 45 miles of the ride. At 178 miles in there was a mini-stop and I bought a 24oz bottle of water.

With a cold refill, I was recharged and ready to tackle the final stretch... I thought. I was talking with a guy for about 10 miles, and we were cracking jokes and yapping, and all of a sudden I started getting fuzzy in the head. We were doing about 17mph, and I was starting to go into debt on all systems. I apologized and backed off the pace while he sped off and I drifted back to 14.5mph again. My head started to clear after slamming a couple of Accel Gels and a half bottle of water. I couldn't remember the last time I peed. It might have been at the 150s stop. I was still sweating, so I wasn't going to stroke out... but I was running low. My body physically couldn't process any more food because of the heat and exertion. Swallowing was getting a little painful. My body couldn't take another Key Lime Accel Gel, and I might be nearing the last Clif Bar or loaded bottle of Accelerade I could tolerate. I looked at the computer and I was at 189 miles. The city was visible, and I was getting down to the last hour in the saddle. Mentally I felt renewed. Team pacelines (Toyota/United, and Gerk's Alpine Hut) passed me as I was chugging along with my head hanging a bit, and gave me a thumbs up and said "finish strong, man. Almost there. You can get this." That was all the encouragement I needed to keep rolling, until mile 198.

Mile 198. 5 miles left, and somebody put a hill in our way. Sweet mother of Miguel Indurain, this hill was just uncalled for: It was winding, it was chattery pavement, and it was steep grade for it's short and torturous third of a mile length. We jammed our way to the top of it, continued up into the downtown Portland metro area, and managed to miss a turn... About 7 blocks later we noticed that there are no other cyclists in bib numbers, and there's no Dan Henry marks. We stopped, checked out maps, were still lost and asked a kid where the hell our street was. His answer was "waaaay down that way you missed it. Just go like, a mile or something and it's after you cross Everett.) So we turned around and I wasn't sure I was going to make it. The tank was empty. I was fueled on fumes at that point, and I don't know how I made it over the line. We found our turn, managed not to get lost again (I think the bus we got behind was over the Dan Henry marker and that's why we missed it first time around.) Finally we rolled into the park. I vaguely remember hearing "This is [REAL NAME] of Redmond, Washington crossing the 1-day finish line!" from the PA system as I rolled past the volunteers handing out the
1-day finisher patches. I got some kudos from people already in the park who had passed me in the last 15 miles as I made my way to a bench by the kids' fountain. I took off my shoes and socks, ate another Clif Bar and Accel Gel, and then stood in the fountain for a while, letting the cold water massage my numb feet and aching legs. Eventually I got my phone to boot up long enough to get Donna's phone number, bum some dude's phone and call her to come and find me. We hung out at the park until I could get my legs underneath myself to go and get my backpack (we got there with 2 minutes to spare until closing time!) and then ride the couple miles back to her place. I had a shower, we rode to the Lucky Labrador Tavern for dinner, then we came back and I crashed until 7:00am. The next morning we had breakfast at Gypsy's, rode the MUP along the river for a ways down to the busses, and I headed back to home.


Extra thanx to:
- Donna, who let me shower and crash at her house, showed me two awesome eateries in Portland, and generally treated me far better than someone who smelled as bad as I did really deserved.
- Cascade Bike Club for the ride organization
- The Pedro's guys for giving me a wheel magnet
- The Goldwing riders club for mechanical support and route security
- The police who stood in the sun in every town and directed traffic for us
- The townsfolk who sat on their front lawns and cheered us on
- The townsfolk who set up garden hose "misting stations" to ride through
- The guy who asked to have his paceline draft me for a bit, and offered to slow down and pace me for a while. (Dude, you rock!)
- Everyone who passed me in the last 20 miles and said something encouraging.

3 middle fingers to:
- Everyone who threw their garbage along the course. How'd you like it if I rode past your manicured lawn and threw my trash on it?
- Everyone who pissed somewhere other than a toilet. Seriously, people. There's port-o-lets every 15 miles or so. Plus 7-11's and gas stations. Nobody grows hedges in your toilet; do them the courtesy of not pissing on their shrubs.
- Wheelsuckers. Yeah, you know who you are. No announcements; I just look back and there you are with your nose planted in my butt crack. Here's a joke for you: How many times can I fart on purpose? A whole freaking lot. Who's laughing now?

Overall, it was a good ride. I don't think I'll do it again, because it is such a huge number of people. Like other events, it's gotten too large (IMO). Other people love it and come back year after year for the jovial atmosphere, etc. I felt a bit crowded for much of the ride. It was a worthwhile experience, though.

Congratulations to everyone who rode.
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Old 07-14-08, 11:08 PM   #25
2wheeled
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Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
The Stats

206.66 miles
13h 33m 13s rolling time
14h 45m total time
15.2mph rolling average
Excellent report, almost makes me feel I was there.
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