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WEEKEND CYCLING - June 18/19

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

WEEKEND CYCLING - June 18/19

Old 06-19-11, 05:07 AM
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WEEKEND CYCLING - June 18/19

Happy Father's Day!! Happy Winter/Summer Solstice!!

Here in Australia it isn't Father's Day until September (I think), so this wasn't Father's Day for us, but I still sent greetings to my father.

And the June Solstice is on June 21 this year, but starting June 18th, we had an extra minute of daylight in the evenings. Another 3 weeks or so, and maybe I won't be walking home in the dark. http://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/june-solstice.html


So, tell us about your cycling this weekend. If you are a father, did you get out for a good ride? If you are in the northern hemisphere, did you do a long summer solstice ride?



Saturday - the only exercise we got was walking. We drove into Melbourne and did quite a bit of brisk walking while shopping.

And then, we went to the Audax Australia annual ball. (For those of you unfamiliar with the term Audax, in this case it refers to Randonneuring or a type of long distance cycling)




Sunday - we were up early to do a 100 km randonneuring event around the city of Melbourne.

That had to be the most interesting, and one of the most challenging 100 km events I've ever ridden. More about it in a little bit .......


And I'm putting together photos of both.

Last edited by Machka; 06-20-11 at 04:00 PM.
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Old 06-19-11, 06:34 AM
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Here is my ride. 25 miles around a little paninsula. it was a nice ride, but the wind was a little harsh on the way back!

http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93285152

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Old 06-19-11, 06:44 AM
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Happy Fathers Day all... I'm a father and grand father and enjoy them all..

No long rides here yet, but I do my 15-20 miles everynight. It's getting so hot here that night riding is becoming more common. My night rides keep me off the main roads and away from whatever traffic may be out. Went out at 2330 friday night and did 21 miles and 2130 saturday night to do 20.5 miles...
My ride length may not seem like much to most of you, but up until a few months ago I had been off a bike for over 20+ years and was very out of shape. I do feel a huge improvement in my riding as the weeks go by and want to work up slowy to longer and longer rides...

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Old 06-19-11, 07:09 AM
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Sunday - "See Sea Rider 100K"

We arrived at the start location a little bit before 8 am to get ready for the ride. I was expecting 15-ish riders to be there, but it is the middle of winter, and the only one there was the ride organiser, Chris ... at first there were 3. We took care of the paperwork, set up the bicycles, and just as we were about to go, another rider, Russell, rolled up. So then there were 4. We got underway a little after 8, but that was OK. None of us was in the mood for a really fast ride ... just something casual.

Almost the entire ride was on MUPs throughout the Melbourne area. I don't normally like riding on MUPs, but we have talked about doing something like this for a while in order to see the city in a different way.

I struggled for the first 8 km. I knew I had forgotten to use my inhaler, but my EIA isn't usually that bad. I was struggling on the hills, struggling on the flats, and even struggling on the downhills. I kept thinking that I would settle in and it would get easier ... maybe I just needed to warm up. Then I thought maybe there was a stiff headwind, but there wasn't much movement of the trees. We stopped at the top of a small, steepish hill at the 8 km point and dug out my inhaler. And then, on a whim, I spun the front wheel ... and it didn't spin at all! The brakes were clamped on! I usually check that before I go anywhere, but today I didn't. We adjusted the brakes and what a difference! Suddenly the ride became a lot easier and more enjoyable.

Most of our long rides lately have had very similar scenery ... fields, gum trees, cows, and sheep. We've been talking about finding a ride with some scenery variety, and this was definitely it. We had parks, rivers, the bay, buildings of all sorts from small houses to tall skyscrapers, industrial areas, residential areas, and the city centre. There were lots of people on bicycles, walking, walking dogs, etc. etc. We went by markets, outdoor stages, and street entertainers. There wasn't a dull moment!

Most of our long rides have also been quite straightforward when it comes to the roads ... small country roads without much traffic or busier roads with shoulders. Nothing very technical. We've also been talking about trying a more technical ride, and this was definitely it! We were dodging people on bicycles, walkers, dogs, small children, etc. etc. Thank goodness it is winter because there were probably fewer people on the paths than there would have been in summer. The condition of the paths varied from light gravel to narrow and paved, to wooden boardwalk, to a metal surface, to wider and paved, to paving tiles, to cobblestone ... we had it all. We even had a flight of stairs! And not all of it was in good condition. I think the people who build these things should ride them regularly. But it kept our attention!

Just for some variety, we had to walk in several places. One place was a long, narrow bridge with a slippery metal surface. It was even slippery to walk on with the cleats. Another was the stairs ... there were three flights, with the side ramp to push the bicycles up. Another was a bridge we crossed both out and back, but which only allowed pedestrians. And then I walked a section of of the path with tight corners and a steep climb, and another section with an even steeper climb.

To add to the interest, both Chris and Russell gave us a guided tour of the city, telling us the history and other information about many of the things we were cycling past.

The first part of the ride took us through a relatively hilly part of the city, mostly in parkland along rivers. I was surprised how much parkland there is in the Melbourne area. A runner also took me by surprise by passing me on the way up one of the hills, and I was doing about 10 km/h!

30 km into the ride we arrived at the middle of the city where we stopped for coffee and a muffin. It was still early in the day and not too busy there. Not long after we set off again, we picked up another rider who rode with us for several km ... and then there were 5! The extra rider left after a bit ... and then there were 4 again.

This part of the ride took us along the bay. It was flat there, and I love looking out over the water, but we started fighting with gusty headwinds. There wasn't much in the way of wildlife, but on the way back, a rat nearly ran into my wheel!

Back to the city centre at the 70 km point, and Russell decided to catch a train home. He had told us at the beginning that he probably wouldn't do the whole distance, but it was good having him along. So then we were back to 3.

I was starting to tire a little bit already at the 70 km point myself. Riding MUPs in the city is an interval workout! In the country, we kind of settle into a pace, and just ride that pace for hours. But on the MUPs we pushed hard up the short, steep hills, or anytime there was an opening with no other MUP users, and then had to slow up or stop when there were other MUP users or when we came to intersections. We were constantly slowing and accelerating and slowing and accelerating. And because all 4 of us had agreed to stick together, I worked harder than I normally do to keep up.

However, there was still 30 km to go. Somehow I imagined it would be flat ... it wasn't. The route took us onto the shoulder of a road, and up a long stepped hill ... climb, and then it kind of flattens out a bit or descends a little, and then climb again, and then flatter again, and then climb again, and on up. The descent on the other side, when we finally go there, was nice, but I was knackered at the top of that climb. We had a couple more steep climbs (which I walked) and then a nice cruise back to the start point.

We've never done anything like that before, and we really enjoyed the ride. Now we're talking about going back and doing parts of it more slowly so I can take more photos.










Last edited by Machka; 06-20-11 at 07:58 AM.
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Old 06-19-11, 07:51 AM
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Interesting ride yesterday morning. About 8 miles in I passed what appeared to be a pristine UT Longhorn cap in the weeds next to the road. I stopped and checked it out...and sure enough, it's in great shape so now I have a new cap (it cleaned up nicely with Woolite). It was a super windy morning and I got a late start (9a). Temp was 78 with 86% humidity. Did I mention the wind? I figure it was blowing a steady 20mph since when it was straight behind me, I started feeling a little breeze on my face over 20mph.

A couple miles later after picking up the cap, I felt a strong itch under my helmet. I thought it would just subside but then I began to wonder if a bee had flown in. I wear a halo skullcap and I think it may have saved me. I pulled over, removed my helmet and didn't see anything. I rubbed my head where the itch was and everything felt fine. After the ride, I was shampooing my hair and immediately felt something stuck in my hair. I couldn't tell because everything was soapy, but I think it may have been a stinger. I suspect the bee tried to sting me and just touched the surface of my scalp, leaving the stinger in my hair.

Next, after making my usual turnaround spot under the dam bridge at 21 miles, I munched a cliff bar then started back. Halfway across the bridge I took a screw through my tire. I think I was lucky it didn't make it to my rim.



I was right in the middle of the bridge, the wind was blowing and the traffic was going by at 60 mph from where I was standing. When big trucks would go by the bridge would really shake. With the wind, I had to be careful not to leave anything loose else it would blow away.

I got the tube out and booted the tire. This is the second time in two weeks that I've had to boot a tire and I'm now a staunch supporter of the Park tire boots. They are so convenient because they're the right size AND they have adhesive that keeps them in place while you put your wheel back together. Got the change done and continued my return trip. The clouds had gone away and the temps had risen probably into the mid 80's. I still felt pretty good but could tell there would be suffering before I got home.

About 5 miles from home I really started to suffer. After a short period of standing my right thigh cramped a bit so I really tried to relax and not worry about my pace. In the last mile I was so hot and uncomfortable. I got into the house and checked my weather station...96 and 31% humidity. No wonder. Feeling a bit light headed, I drank a big glass of cold water and grabbed two ice packs, put them under my armpits and lay down on a towel for about 20 minutes before I finally started feeling better. Currently I'm stuck at 205 on the scale...when I stepped on it after my recovery it read 198. Whoopsie! Got rid of my carbo loading beer from Friday night and then some!

41 miles, 3200'.
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Old 06-19-11, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
...and we really enjoyed the ride. Now we're talking about going back and doing parts of it more slowly so I can take more photos.
Your post reminded me of the one thing I didn't accomplish on my recent trip to Sydney (last few weeks) - didn't find time to hook up with a local club and do some rides - winter weather over there is pleasantly mild compared with our harsh winters. Productive trip, still feeling bad about the non-cycling bit.
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Old 06-19-11, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by rufvelo View Post
Your post reminded me of the one thing I didn't accomplish on my recent trip to Sydney (last few weeks) - didn't find time to hook up with a local club and do some rides - winter weather over there is pleasantly mild compared with our harsh winters. Productive trip, still feeling bad about the non-cycling bit.
We live in the mountains north of Melbourne and it's been rather miserable there ... very chilly, foggy, rainy, etc. Melbourne was such a pleasant change. The overnight low on Saturday night was 10C (which is often the high for the area where we live), and it got up to 17C during the day on Sunday. Plus it was sunny for much of the day!! Sydney's temps are similar to Melbourne's right now.

From what I recall, a ride through Sydney would be even more challenging than one through Melbourne ... it's hillier than Melbourne. I've cycled through parts of it when I was there in 2004, and really struggled with all the climbing.
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Old 06-19-11, 04:13 PM
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I got out for the Sunrise Century in Boulder, CO. The fabulous thing about this ride was I did it for my 40th b-day...and I haven't done a century in many years! After a 25 mile ascent into the rocky mountains....wow...I was pretty toasted, but I made it and it was awesome!!!!
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Old 06-19-11, 04:23 PM
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50 mile coastal ride with a coffee stop at the half way mark.
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Old 06-19-11, 04:36 PM
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I finished the series, so I can now buy the jersey.


I took it easy at the beginning of the ride, as killing myself in the first 100 miles wouldn't cut it. That is where most of the climbing is. So, no pack riding after the second control. To be honest, the first leg was pretty tame. Some climbs, some wind, some rain, some sun. Was quite nice, to be honest. Got back to the truck to get ready for the 200K portion with a change of clothes, and recharge the light and Garmin. Bought a quart of orange juice, which was delicious, but I paid later with some heartburn.


Riding all night long is an adventure. Ran into some big wind and rain within the first 30 miles, and lasted for about 10 minutes, then was gone. There were remnants of a breeze through the whole ride, but nothing terrible. But, I didn't stay dry. It appears the farmers water at night, and those big huge sprinklers you see in the fields put out some water. There were a few that were spraying the road, and I had no choice but to ride through. 60 miles in, some critter made a beeline to my front wheel, and I'm lucky I kept the bike up. No clue what it was, as it was under the point of where the light shined, but it hit hard enough that I had to re-position the wheel in the fork.


Shortly after, a flat... Changed the tube, and no clue what caused it. Last control with 30 to go, and another flat. Another tube, and on my way. 20 to go, it's soft. Piss on it. Shoot another CO2 in it, and it made it another 8. Rinse and repeat. Finished on a flat, but finished.


372 miles. 25 hours and 15 minutes. Was shooting for under 24.


Charging the Garmin caused it to save the first part, and I wasn't able to just continue the activity.




http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93373510


http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93373430
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Old 06-19-11, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by LAJ View Post
372 miles. 25 hours and 15 minutes.
/thread
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Old 06-19-11, 04:46 PM
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Ended up doing about 50 miles on dirt paths (filled with an uncommon abundance of potholes) Saturday after being in FL for a week. 'Twas fun.
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Old 06-19-11, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by LAJ View Post
372 miles. 25 hours and 15 minutes. Was shooting for under 24.
Dang!
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Old 06-19-11, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
We live in the mountains north of Melbourne and it's been rather miserable there ... very chilly, foggy, rainy, etc. Melbourne was such a pleasant change. The overnight low on Saturday night was 10C (which is often the high for the area where we live), and it got up to 17C during the day on Sunday. Plus it was sunny for much of the day!! Sydney's temps are similar to Melbourne's right now.

From what I recall, a ride through Sydney would be even more challenging than one through Melbourne ... it's hillier than Melbourne. I've cycled through parts of it when I was there in 2004, and really struggled with all the climbing.
Yeah Sydney is hilly. Not that bike friendly when I lived there either. But I love hills, I guess because I grew up on them.

Anyway, I'm an Australian living in the USA, and Father's Day always seems way too early in the year to me. I have 2 kids. Happy Father's Day all.

Friday night: went for a 12 mile ride around the neighbourhood on my commuter.
Saturday: went for a ride with my 3 y.o. (he was in the trailer/carriage thing), attached it to my commuter. Maybe a 30 min ride.
Sunday: went to possibly buy my first road bike, got annoyed and came home. Went for a 16 mile ride on my commuter instead.

Every time I go out to ride now I feel like I could keep going. Am I addicted?
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Old 06-19-11, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by idc View Post
Yeah Sydney is hilly. Not that bike friendly when I lived there either. But I love hills, I guess because I grew up on them.
...
Sunday: went to possibly buy my first road bike, got annoyed and came home.
...
Do tell, about riding in Sydney and the bike purchase annoyance...
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Old 06-19-11, 05:58 PM
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Been a while since I posted in these threads. Still trying to get some climbing in ahead of Death Ride in 3wks, so headed down to San Jose, climbed Sierra Rd, then made for my first ascent up Mt Hamilton and picked up a couple of other BFrs. What a gorgeous ride - the grade isn't too challenging, but it's a little longer than some of the other bay area climbs (20miles to the summit). Minor irritation that some of the 41 should appreciate - half way through, I passed a dude in a nice white/black cervelo kit - give him the usual "how's it going" and moved along. Next thing I realize the dude's on my wheel - he never responded to me when I said hello and proceeded to ride the next 10miles just off my wheel. Sometimes I'd hear him huffing, occasionally I'd hear him coasting . Still he tailed me to the summit and never said a word.

After that, my other ride partner and I made down the back side of Hamilton and begun a slow grind back up in the newly found south bay heat. Only 5.5miles but much tougher than the 20 we'd just done. All in relatively short 62miles with 9000ft climbing. Nice day to be out on a bike.
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Old 06-19-11, 06:08 PM
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Did 60 solo miles on Saturday and 44 solo miles on Sunday. Really suffering from dead legs today. I'm taking tomorrow off and hopefully will be ready for hill repeats on Tuesday and the fast group ride on Wednesday.
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Old 06-19-11, 07:27 PM
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Just completed my nightly 20 miles and the highlight of the ride was that I almost T-boned a damn deer...
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Old 06-19-11, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by rufvelo View Post
Do tell, about riding in Sydney and the bike purchase annoyance...
I commuted in Sydney (to university, or the train station) a little bit but it was always pretty rough. Especially in the urban areas where there was pretty much zero infrastructure to support bicycling. Same goes for in the suburbs where I lived, or the suburbs nearby where I would ride to on weekends. I've been back a few times since and noticed they have some pretty nice bike lanes in some areas now, even with dedicated bike pedestrian lights (showing a green light in bike silhouette, instead of a walking man).

As a teenager I would just get out and go on ride in the right hand side of the lane, regardless of the traffic conditions or distance. Fortunately I had some friends to go with a lot of time on the longer rides. But we always had mountain bikes too so none of us ever went that fast and in hindsight it was pretty dangerous. My parents had racing bikes but for some reason when I got older I stuck with mountain bikes - probably because I did do specific off-road trails sometimes (e.g. Oaks Fire Trail).

Sydney is a drowned river valley so it's full of hills everywhere.



My bike purchase thread is here. Nothing really went wrong too much, I'm probably just not quite ready to drop "that much" on a bike without more research.
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php/744042
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Old 06-19-11, 07:47 PM
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50mi with group ride. legs felt great today. 179mi for the week..
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Old 06-19-11, 09:20 PM
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Did a 220k permanent yesterday, didn't ride today. Had some fun, had some drama.
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Old 06-19-11, 09:50 PM
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Just 60 miles today. Vail Pass.
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Old 06-20-11, 02:26 AM
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Originally Posted by idc View Post
I've been back a few times since and noticed they have some pretty nice bike lanes in some areas now, even with dedicated bike pedestrian lights (showing a green light in bike silhouette, instead of a walking man).
The councils around Melbourne and VicRoads have gone a long way with installation of dedicated bike lights at junctions. They do tend to be linked to the pedestrian cycle, which can be annoying, but they do help newer or less-confident cyclists.

This was a bike-path ride, so we stuck to the paths most of the time, but there were occasions when it would have been nice to get on the road, if for nothing else but the smoother surfacing and lack of both other users and intruding infrastucture (bollard, poles, scaffolding, etc, etc).

I do also have to say that the overwhelming majority of path users seem to be well schooled on etiquette. Unlike in Adelaide a few months ago, we didn't have any significant conflict with errant walkers and doggie owners, so that added to the enjoyment of the ride.

Oh, and you know you are going slowly up a steep hill when a runner (not really a jogger, because this guy's pace was good) goes past you. We played leapfrog with the runner about four times, until a decent downhill allowed us to snaffle him and clear off into the distance.
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Old 06-20-11, 05:52 AM
  #24  
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Thanks idc and Rowan; with the bike lanes I saw I thought Sydney was quite bicycle friendly. I will be back and give it a shot then in the city, I'd like to do some centuries with a local club outside Sydney city as well.
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Old 06-20-11, 11:31 AM
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http://connect.garmin.com/feed/rss/a...wner=iodaniell

Rode from work to Elkton, MD ( http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93653191 - 47 miles) to do this ride ( http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93653180 - 113 miles, but only went 97 miles after running out of fluids on Delaware RT 9 ), then rode back to Maryland and stopped in for Father's Day, repair an ill RD shifter cable ( http://connect.garmin.com/activity/93653165 ), stayed the night at mom and dad's and went to work this morning from there.

I got in over 400 miles for the entire week.

Here's pix from the entire weekend:

http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?s...1&l=937433eac0

Last edited by NoRacer; 06-21-11 at 05:20 AM.
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