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az_cyclist

Solvang Spring Double, 2017

6 posts in this topic

 

ok, so this is a week late.... better late than never

 
The drive over went well.  I was driving alone, but felt ok.  I left home at 05:30, and arrived in Buelton at the Motel 6 at about 2:35.  Between Santa Barbara and Buelton I drove thru some fog, which made me wonder about the weather for Saturday.
 
After dinner we checked in and, at the suggestion of my CA doubles mentor, Jim, we decided to leave as early as we could, in other words, 0400.  We knew Sag 1 may not be ready for us, 37 miles in.  
 
It was clear when we left Buelton, and the temp was about 50.  Knowing how cool the canyons can be, I decided to wear my wool arm warmers, and my lycra knee warmers.  I decided to go with my lycra base layer rather than wool since there was no rain predicted and it can get warmer.  
 
We ran into fog about 10 miles in.  I never really felt cold, but could see the drops of water on my arm warmers.  We start climbing within 2 miles, so that helps keep you warm.  It was cold descending Foxen Canyon Rd.  I didnt wear long fingered gloves, nor glove liners, but I toughed it out. We rode thru fog half the way to San Luis Obispo.  Normally I take off my arm and knee warmers at Sag 2, but I did'nt this time.  I finally pulled the arm wamers down as we turned off Hwy 1  toward Morro Bay.  he tops of the hills there still had fog/clouds on them. 
 
I felt good at the lunch stop back in San Luis Obispo (the stop was a bit shorter because I stayed back to help Dennis with a flat).  The sun was starting to shine so I took off my arm warmers but left my knee warmers on.  There is one nice climb, about a mile at 4-6% , after we leave Pismo Beach.  After that are some rollers then a nice downhill into Sag 4, Guadalupe, CA, the first rest stop after lunch.  I should have taken my knee warmers off then, but, I didnt. 
 
The next 27 miles are normally tough for me.  I think my energy is a bit low, but, it may also be that, in my mind, this segment should be shorter and easier than it is.  I felt pretty good but warmer up  significantly by the time I got to the last sag in Los Alamos.  I took the knee warmers off, and decided to take off my base layer, which meant unzipping my jersey and pulling off the straps of my bibs.  I got off to the side next to the porta potties and did just that.  Of course we are all long distance cyclists and nobody bats and eye at that.
 
After the last rest stop there is less than 30 miles left in the ride, but the climbs up Aliosis and Foxen Canyon Rd will get your attention.  For whatever reason they didnt seem so bad, and it really looked as if we could finish in daylight.  Jim was staying back with Jed as they wanted to take the last part easy, and he gave us the green light to go.  We just had 2 shorter climbs left, and those  went well,  I was glad I took of the knee warmers and base layer.
 
We finished 14 hours 30 min, or about 6:30.  My time was about in the middle of all riders, which is par for the course for me.  I could have stayed in the hot shower for an hour longer, but I met the others at the restaurant (the entry fee included dinner). I had the burger and Firstone 805 to top off a successful ride.
 

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I can't even imagine myself doing one of those rides. I didn't even do a century ride last year. This year I hope to get in some longer rides but it's one day at a time, when you get old things happen that change your plans. My wife was in and out of the hospital most of last summer but she seems to be doing really well so far this year. Congratulations on another great ride.

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3 hours ago, Longjohn said:

I can't even imagine myself doing one of those rides. I didn't even do a century ride last year. This year I hope to get in some longer rides but it's one day at a time, when you get old things happen that change your plans. My wife was in and out of the hospital most of last summer but she seems to be doing really well so far this year. Congratulations on another great ride.

Thanks Longjohn.  I was fortunate to have a long distance mentor.  He was 71 in 2011 when he encouraged me to ride my first double, and he was working to become the oldest person to enter the California Triple Crown Hall of Fame (50 of the CTC doubles).  he is closing in on 100 now (Solvang was #89). 

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Thanks all.  once you attain the fitness, and have ridden a few to develop the mental toughness, the routes are really beautiful.... and you dont feel like you cant move the next morning.  I hope I can keep riding them for the next few years

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