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    Century ride- destination vs. loop

    Hey folks. Another question. I did 50 with my riding buddy yesterday and we are plotting a century. I've been training hard- 223 miles in the last week- and he's a grizzled old veteran road-biker who's done a few century rides in years past. At any rate, this seems like a no-brainer to do one while we both (presumably) can; at our age you just can't assume that next summer will have the same opportunities etc.

    Soooo.... I'm not concerned about being "able" to do it; I'm riding 50-60 every other day and have plenty left in the tank. It'll just be uncomfortable. On our ride yesterday we were debating riding to a destination- say, Eugene > Portland, vs. just going out and riding around until we hit 100 roughly when we get back home. For some reason a destination sounds psychologically superior to me, but heck if I know. Riding to a destination obviously presents logistical challenges too.

    Interested in your thoughts! Mark and I are best friends and this will be done in the spirit of adventure and camaraderie; not a brutal iron-man type thing. So, making the whole thing as fun as possible is the goal, not trying to notch a certain amount of climbing or whatever.
    Every time that wheel turn 'round,
    Bound to cover just a little more ground!

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    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Either way works. Is that helpful?

    One minor point: A loop from home means that as soon as you're done, you can jump in the shower and relax. If you wind up 50-100 miles from home, you've got to get back somehow.

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    ka maté ka maté ka ora pdedes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    Either way works. Is that helpful?

    One minor point: A loop from home means that as soon as you're done, you can jump in the shower and relax. If you wind up 50-100 miles from home, you've got to get back somehow.
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    By the time you're experienced enough to get something germane out of a test ride, you won't need a test ride.

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    Senior Member WhyFi's Avatar
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    I'd love to do a destination ride, but I haven't yet. In the back of my mind, I think about the possibility of making a call of shame, and what a pain in the ass it would be for the person that would bail me out. I think that the furthest I've been from my start point, as the crow flies, would be about 40 miles. If you get that figured out satisfactorily, I go for it.
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    I would wager that not riding in Minnesota is just as fatiguing as not riding in New York.

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    We are thinking of having the wives (also good friends) meet us wherever (the coast, Portland) and just stay the night there... if we opted for the destination route.
    Every time that wheel turn 'round,
    Bound to cover just a little more ground!

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    Fast+Bulbous thinktubes's Avatar
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    Just do two 50- mile destinaton rides back to back.

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    Senior Member SpeshulEd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Tom View Post
    We are thinking of having the wives (also good friends) meet us wherever (the coast, Portland) and just stay the night there... if we opted for the destination route.
    If this was the plan, I'd say destination for sure. Have the wives come together later in the day and meet you at the end, enjoy the evening, have a nice dinner and crash. Then drive home the next day, or if you're feeling really spirited, century x2.
    Hey guys, lets go play bikes!

    Strava

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    Also, if you pick a day when there is a tailwind, you'll have it the entire way on a destination century.

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    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Riding to a destination equals logistics, and potentially long shuttle. Last thing you want after your first century is several hours waiting for a ride, driving home etc before a shower.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Tom View Post
    We are thinking of having the wives (also good friends) meet us wherever (the coast, Portland) and just stay the night there... if we opted for the destination route.
    I've gone this route if my wife and I were already planning to go somewhere. When we go visit my parents I'll frequently ride there, she'll leave 2.5 hours after me in the car so we arrive at the same time (103 km). I find this kind of longer ride the most satisfying: you're trying to get somewhere and you succeeded.

    If I'm doing a ride with out a specific destination, I like an out-and-back, or one big loop better than multiple smaller loops. I have a 40km loop I do with my wife, but when I do a full century ride I think it would be mind-numbing to do that 40km loop 4 times.

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    Senior Member mprelaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by willawingwong View Post
    Also, if you pick a day when there is a tailwind, you'll have it the entire way on a destination century.
    Not to throw a damper on anyone's plans, but wind direction has been known to shift 180 degrees over the course of a day.

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    Curse those days!

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    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Tom View Post
    We are thinking of having the wives (also good friends) meet us.
    Well, which is it?

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    Just let someone else take care of your logistics by riding The Duncan Ride. It's relatively local to you and ends at the Brew Pubs, where your wives can wait for you (maybe you better do the driving on the way home). What's not to like?
    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...d-Century-Plus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
    Well, which is it?
    Wives and girlfriends. It's about time they met. Sorry, should have been more clear.

    What could possibly go wrong?
    Every time that wheel turn 'round,
    Bound to cover just a little more ground!

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    Senior Member YOJiMBO20's Avatar
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    I would opt for the destination.
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    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Tom View Post
    On our ride yesterday we were debating riding to a destination- say, Eugene > Portland, vs. just going out and riding around until we hit 100 roughly when we get back home. For some reason a destination sounds psychologically superior to me, but heck if I know. Riding to a destination obviously presents logistical challenges too.

    Interested in your thoughts!
    Do both. Do one of each. Do a loop this week, and a destination next week.

    I've done a lot of centuries in over the last 2 decades, and they've been a wide mix of ride type.

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    Destination is a great idea if you've got a place to go to.

    I have a cabin in the woods about 135 miles from my home. It's got a solar water tank, so there's always a hot shower waiting for me. Right now that's an 8 hour solo ride for me.

    For me it's all about the logistics of cleaning up, eating, and chilling out.

    This spring I took a credit card and just went as far as I could at a steady pace, made it from Louisville to Huntington, WV, around 180 miles. Stayed at a hotel. Tried to do the 180 back the next day (which would've been my biggest two-day total ever) but ended up making the call of shame with around 100 miles to go. Just didn't have the fitness to match my ambition in April.

    Once a year my group rides from Cincinnati to Danville, KY, about 110-115 miles, and we stay in Danville, then ride around Central KY for a day, another night in Danville, then back to Cincy. That's super fun, but ends up costing me $350+ and the entire weekend.

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    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Personally, I'm not fond of "out and back" routes. Create a nice big loop for youself and go have fun.

    Meeting the spouses somewhere 100 miles away also works if you can trust them to remember and not go shopping/drinking/dancing while you guys pound on the hotel room door.

  20. #20
    Senior Member SpeshulEd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TommyBing View Post
    Destination is a great idea if you've got a place to go to.

    I have a cabin in the woods about 135 miles from my home. It's got a solar water tank, so there's always a hot shower waiting for me. Right now that's an 8 hour solo ride for me.

    For me it's all about the logistics of cleaning up, eating, and chilling out.

    This spring I took a credit card and just went as far as I could at a steady pace, made it from Louisville to Huntington, WV, around 180 miles. Stayed at a hotel. Tried to do the 180 back the next day (which would've been my biggest two-day total ever) but ended up making the call of shame with around 100 miles to go. Just didn't have the fitness to match my ambition in April.

    Once a year my group rides from Cincinnati to Danville, KY, about 110-115 miles, and we stay in Danville, then ride around Central KY for a day, another night in Danville, then back to Cincy. That's super fun, but ends up costing me $350+ and the entire weekend.

    I have to say...riding to a cabin in the middle of nowhere, as well as just riding until you can't any more, then staying in a hotel and riding back the next day, sound like fantastic ideas. I want to do that! I need to do that before summer is over.
    Hey guys, lets go play bikes!

    Strava

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    Senior Member Cookiemonsta's Avatar
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    Usually when I do over 100 km I just go from my house and that is where I end.

    But there have been a few times actually where I cycled from, or towards a destination. And while it is a little bit more work and organization, it really feels nicer. Like you are not just riding/training, but also on a trip. It is also possible to reach areas that would otherwise be too far away.


    Off-topic
    I once made a post on this forum asking whether anyone ever takes a train somewhere. In the past, when I was younger. I would look at the wind direction and then take a train as far as I thought I could still make it back in one piece with wind in my back. As a young person without access to a car etc. this was awesome. However, some people on the forum attacked me for it, going as far as to say my mom failed in my upbringing (because I would pick a direction based on wind direction). I just think I was a kid who liked to explore and see things. This is the part of riding to a destination that still appeals to me. When you do a loop, after a while you have ridden all the roads in your area.

  22. #22
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    I prefer loops or out-and-backs over destination routes for the reasons above.

    Also, don't overthink it. It's just a long bike ride.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Tom View Post
    Soooo.... I'm not concerned about being "able" to do it; I'm riding 50-60 every other day and have plenty left in the tank. It'll just be uncomfortable. On our ride yesterday we were debating riding to a destination- say, Eugene > Portland, vs. just going out and riding around until we hit 100 roughly when we get back home. For some reason a destination sounds psychologically superior to me, but heck if I know. Riding to a destination obviously presents logistical challenges too.
    Eugene to Portland is pretty easy logistically. Buy seats and bike tickets on the Amtrak Cascades, ride out so planned arrival time is at least a couple of hours before train boarding time, clean up in a Starbucks bathroom, eat a big meal, then get on the train.

    Wife shuttles are nice, too.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  24. #24
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Do the destination ride if you have a worthwhile destination, otherwise, go for the loop.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

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