13 August 2011

Know your limits!

Ride #96 (four to go to the Big One Hundred!)

30 miles on the ARBT
Saturday, August 13th 

Oh my goodness! I got to ride with the other group I belong to! These folks are the Hammerin' Wheels and they generally go quite fast and often on super steep hills. It is a busy friendly large group and it was so fun to finally have a ride I could manage. (There have been others, but sometimes the schedules conflict.)

Our Fearless Leader who runs the group as a whole knows there is a gap between the casual rides offered by the casual riding group and the hammerfests of the larger group. He's been encouraging ride leaders to do fill-in-the-gap rides, so I've been running some rides (Speeding on the ARBT) and some other ride leaders have stepped up to offer some also. Did I say this was a great group?

The ride today started from a shopping center near Wm Pond. I decided I would rather ride up to meet them from Folsom than to drive out there when I had the possibility of extra exercise. My plan was to ride from Folsom to Wm Pond, back to Folsom, then around Lake Natoma for a total of 41 miles.

Alas, my neck and shoulder are quite stiff today. Sometimes riding loosens them up, but sometimes it does not. Today was a 'not' day. So I got to spend 15 miles with the bike trail largely to myself (that's what starting at dawn does for you) and 15 miles with the group followed by a wonderful brunch at Karen's Bakery Cafe. Then they went back to Wm Pond and I went home.

The new construction on the bicycle interchange at Hazel seems to be done. I call it an interchange because it really is. I tried to get some good pictures of it but this is the best I could do.

The overcrossing is the Hazel Bridge, ahead is a beautiful swoopy ramp up to the bridge

Optional quick descent instead of the probably ADA compliant ramp

Handsome faux rock walls beside the ramp

I should have some time on Monday to ride around playing architectural photographer.

Hazel bridge is sooooooo much better than it used to be. Almost every time I've ridden it in the last few months it's been different as the construction progressed, leading to some sudden stops and changes of directions when you realize "Oh, Darn. I should have turned sooner." The "Oh, Darn" moments can be exacerbated in a group of riders.
Yes yes, you who know me in the real world know it is not really Darn but some other four letter word.

We had a little 'darn' moment today, when I just did not have enough room to move forward to finish changing the gears due to suddenly stopped bicycles in the way. I managed to (for once) to hoist myself out of the seat, but I had to get one of the guys to turn the cranks for me while I hoisted the back of the bike to finish changing the rear derailleur up to the lowest gear.  I could have probably done it by myself, by pushing down on the boom and skidding the back wheel around. But if there's a reasonably scenic gentleman around, why not ask for some help?

A couple of rides next week, then a weekend off from bicycling.
I say that like it's a good thing.

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