Old Steel and New Calves
Your Portland Century Experience
What a fun century - we measured 6000ft of total climbing. The upwind ride home along Marine Dr felt leisurely after those hills, and the raindrops were refreshingly cool. How was your ride?
My first time on the PDX Century and I had a really great ride. For someone not from the PDX metro area and only familar with the common sites it was a great way to see lots of the city and region. I got in just as the raindrops were getting a little more regular and had a very nice end of ride meal under the tree canopy at PSU and stayed nicely dry during the showers.
The climbing wasn't too bad, but I ended up missing the last climb (left on Stark...) somehow. I didn't realize the cummulative was 6000'. I enjoyed all of the dining choices but would have really like to have some chips with my deli sandwich! The small slice of pizza at the next rest stop made up for that.
Overall, a very nice century with good rest stop support, course marking, motorcycle support/corner marshals and food. Probably worth the more than double other local centuries entry fee as the amenities were better (food, end of ride goodie bag, etc.) Only two (minor) negative marks - not enough visible SAG vehicles that could carrry people. It was great to see the motorcycle riders, especially at key intersections. I would have liked to see more than one true SAG van in 100 miles. Also, I wish they'd have premixed the sports drink choices in igloo style water coolers vs make your own individual bottle by bottle from powder.
This was my first century, and overall I thought it was great. 6,000 ft of climbing sounds a bit high to me, but whatever. The climbs were tough, but not too bad. Actually, the one that got me was the first one on Judd Rd; I wasn't expecting it. One of my favorite moments came in Sandy, riding through the neighborhood. These guys in front of me kept missing turns, and they were going past a left when we heard someone yelling "Turn! Turn!" It was an older couple on their front porch on the corner, cheering us on. Least favorite moment: watching a guy passing 4 abreast, crossing a double yellow line going uphill, as a truck crested the hill coming at him. Overall, a lot of fun. The hardest part for me was passing within 4 blocks of my house in St Johns when my odometer read 104 (I rode downtown from home). I really thought about bagging it, but I'm glad I finished the course. Free beer and good food, 110 miles total! Between the beer, the rain, and fatigue, I ended up calling my wife to pick me up.
Last edited by lazlo; 08-26-08 at 05:00 PM.
Good ride. My fourth century this year (and overall), first Portland Century. I thought the food at the rest stops was better than any other organized ride I've done. Lots of hills, but I don't mind climbing so that was okay. My wife ended up sagging at the last rest stop, but that was mechanical issues (LBS missed a step on the tune we just had done. Made it right afterwards, no questions.), not fatigue.
I would do it again, for the dinner after if nothing else.