New Years Ride

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The New Years Ride was completed without event for the second straight year, to include completion of the lengthy New Year’s Ride Checklist:

1. Reset Odometer

2. Get On Bike

3.  Pedal

Step 1 was actually somewhat complicated as it involved html coding in the thingy (properly called a “widget”) on the right side of this blog which acts as my odometer.  It took me about 10 minutes and one Google search to solve it.  Many people who know me well often tease me for my lack of technical expertise.  To them I say, “Na-Na Na-Na Boo-Boo, Stick Your Head In Doo-Doo.”  Everything worked just fine.

Steps 2 and 3 were about normal for me.  I got a late start to my day due entirely to my wife’s desire to see a matinee movie.  Never one to turn down an offer to see a movie, I delayed my start time to the afternoon.  When I shoved off at 3:00 PM, the unseasonably warm day was drawing to a close.  Let me just say that I am profoundly grateful for the mild winter, which is far nicer than last year’s biting cold.  If this is the full impact of global warming, then I shall look for ways to increase my carbon footprint this year.

In any event, I picked a simple 19-mile route with a couple of steep (albeit short) climbs and had my fun.  The 60 degree day meant I could shed much of my cold weather gear and zip along at summer-like speeds.  There is a two-mile stretch north of Hoadly where the road slopes at a gentle 2-3 degrees and allows for sustained speeds around 30 mph.  I like that stretch of road, especially on a warm day like today.  There were a large number of cyclists out, so most of our New Year’s Resolutions seem to still be intact.

About seven miles into the ride, I could see the leading edge of a cold weather front that promises to bring our temperatures back to seasonal norms.  I was glad I had my head/tail lights on my road bike (which is not always the case) because it got quite dark quite quickly as these clouds rolled over me.  I finished the ride in dusk-like conditions and was only almost hit one time.  The incident occurred in my neighborhood about 1/2 mile from my house.  I was riding about 100 feet behind a car and a gent who was trying to back out of his driveway onto the road never saw me.  He was focused on the car in front of me and couldn’t see the 240-pound man in a yellow vest with a headlight blinking away.  Fortunately, I had plenty of room to swerve around him and finished the ride without any further ado.

All things considered, it was a very good ride.  If I can keep this pace up, I’ll finish the year with 7008 miles.  Not bad, but somehow I think that may be a bit too optimistic for me!

Storm clouds on the horizon

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19 thoughts on “New Years Ride

    • Thank you, Dace. Unfortunately, you no doubt have learned The Queen’s English, which has certain limitations when reading the ramblings of an American. The quote is a taunt commonly used by American school children!

  1. I think you should be doing that route in reverse so that you go UP the long 2-3% INCLINE and keep a record of your figures for that segment, to improve on them each time, thereby leads the road to improvement :)
    Joking aside that sounds a very good ride given time of year etc. 30mph is a good speed to maintain on your own.
    Oh the luxury of riding in 60c !!!

    • The good news is that my house remains at a constant altitude, meaning that if I go down a hill I must somewhere climb up a similar height. I am therefore not in violation of Velominati Rule #55 (don’t go down a mountain you did not climb).

  2. Good start. I should think that the 7008 miles should be a piece of cake if not this year, then next year. You’ve a fifty percent increase from 2010 to 2011. Another 50% this year gets you to 4500 and another 50% the year after makes it 6750 in 2013. Nothing to it.

  3. Great start! It was a truly remarkable day in N. Virginia yesterday. I definitely overdressed for my walk along the river. While still nice and sunny today, winter seems to be settling in.

  4. Great start! I got out yesterday, too–my first ride in January ever. Yup, ever. Mine was a late start, as well. My tardiness was rewarded with a last blast of golden sunlight from under the canopy of clouds, just before sunset, lighting up the landscape around me with the most intense yellow…

    At the moment the light burst through I was on top of a high point, and looking across the valley toward Braddock Mountain I saw a rainbow in a short columnar form standing atop the mountain. Very unusual, and quite a start to the New Year! Maybe I should start carrying a camera…

    • There was a time in my life when I believed riding a bicycle in January was a sign of mental imbalance (incidentally, that still may be the case). Congratulations on your first January ride – towards a mountain no less!

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