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local bike shope emulates RAM route

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by ridetoofast, Oct 4, 2005.

  1. ridetoofast

    ridetoofast scarred, broken and drunk

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    #1 -   Oct 4, 2005

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  2. Trainwreck

    Trainwreck Turbo Monkey

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    Med. to Well-Done in Phx
    Amused by the Arizona observations since that is where I am planted.

    On Sedona- "Side note #2. Lesson Learned: Locals are fun to talk to, but may be a little crazy and/or intoxicated."

    Yes, the woo woo's are entertaining. Bring your crystals to be recharged by the vortex! Ohhmmmmmm!

    "Arizona: where you can ride your bike 200 miles from the middle of nowhere to the middle of nowhere" It's true! :thumb:

    However we did a century ride last weekend within the general Phoenix metro area.
     
    #2 -   Oct 4, 2005
  3. ridetoofast

    ridetoofast scarred, broken and drunk

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    entries up through day 5

    The riding portion of the trip will start in San Diego, California on October 1st and will conclude...whenever we arrive in Williamsburg, Virginia (hopefully around October 17th). The route will largely consist of the 2005 Race Across America (RAAM) route until we start heading a little more southeast to finish in Virginia instead of New Jersey. Information on the Race Across America route can be seen at www.raceacrossamerica.org.

    The adventure will start with Chris and Robert driving out to Interbike, the world's largest bicycle trade show, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Along the way they'll check out a few sites and maybe report on a few places to ride

    You can contact us at ccnus1@cox.net with any suggestions, comments or questions (or report any typo's as me no type no good.)
    Day 5: Flagstaff, Arizona to Cortez, Colorado

    Day 5 was an epic day to say the least. We started with a performance enhancing tailwind that allowed us to average 25.7 miles per hour for well over 100 miles. Actually we were still around 24mph at almost 200 miles for the day. Of course, wind is a double edged sword that at times turned into a crosswind and eventually a headwind. We went by "Four Corners" where Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Colordo meet. We didn't get to see the monument because we were pressed for time. Spirits were pretty high when we entered Colorado only to be crushed by MORE climbing, the brutal headwind and temperatures dropping down into the 40's. We were going so slow that we couldn't stay warm and the guys had to climb into the van at 216 miles for the day. Somehow I continued and finished at the hotel at 232 miles. When I saw the Days Inn sign I was giddy as a school girl.

    Tomorrow we head to Durango, which promises some of the biggest climbs of the trip! How exciting!

    day total: 216

    trip total: 646
    Day 4: Monday, 10/03/05

    Day 4: As of 3:30pm, AZ time, they had covered 83 miles in 5.5 hours riding time. They were 10 miles south of Flagstaff having passed Sedona earlier in the day. So far today they have had "2 insanely huge climbs" and "rode through 7000' more than once." They hope to cover another 60 plus miles before stopping for the night.

    By the end of the day we covered 140 miles. We ended up in the middle of nowhere (Gray Mountain, Arizona) and had to climb in the van to find a hotel. Tomorrow we'll go back to the spot we stopped and start again. We've fallen short of our goal mileage but have climbed far, far more than one could ever imagine. The Tour de France has nothing on BikeBeat Across America.

    On a side note we got to go through Sedona, Arizona. If you're ever in Arizona definitely visit Sedona. (Don't do it by bike because the climb out of the valley is rough)

    Side note #2. Lesson Learned: Locals are fun to talk to, but may be a little crazy and/or intoxicated.

    Thanks for all the emails. Unforunately we don't have time to respond to them, but do enjoy knowing that people out there are paying attention.

    Tomorrow we're going to attempt a much bigger mileage day as we believe the big climbs are behind us [crossed fingers]. "Arizona: where you can ride your bike 200 miles from the middle of nowhere to the middle of nowhere"

    day total: 140

    trip total: 430
    Day 3: Sunday, 10/02/05

    The boys spent the previous night just east of Blythe, CA, in Arizona. Today, after 8 hours, 45 minutes of riding, covering 138 miles and "two (2) insane climbs" they rolled into Prescott, AZ. The day was hot and staying hydrated was not easy. It seems that Robert has recovered from the previous days troubles. However, Jack, support driver, was the big news of the day. As he entered the motel complex he forgot about his bike up on the roof of the van as he went under that low overhang. Oh well, he needed a new front fork anyway.

    It was David's turn to suffer as we continued through the desert. I wish we kept count of how many bottles and Powergels we've gone through. Ultimately David could have used another couple of bottles and powergels in him.

    I spent a good part of the day playing "Name That Road Kill". My answers went bird, fox, snake, giraffe. Towards the end of the day the heat was getting to all of us but I'm pretty sure it was a giraffe. We get a lot of time to spend thinking so tomorrow I think I'm going to dedicate some time to the virtues of cookies and milkshakes.

    Total for the day: 138

    Trip total: 390
    Day 2

    Right now we have completed 100 miles straight through the desert. We've faired pretty well save Robert, who is suffering from the heat.

    NOTE FROM THE NEW AUTHOR!! This is Steve Wetmore and at Chris' request I will be talking with the riding guys and updating this blog. It seems that the West is not as wireless savy as was hoped and it is not easy for the guys to update the website. Really, that's what they say!?!?!? I think they are just too tired to bother so they delegated this work to me! Steve

    Miles for the day: 127

    Total miles: 252
    Day 1

    Day 1



    Day 1 started with us rolling out of Las Vegas at 5:30am for San Diego. The van was packed, 6 bikes on top, 6 people inside with bags and equipment stacked on top.



    We ended up starting the ride a little later than intended. The terrain involved a number of long climbs with the desert to follow. The first 100 miles went by without too much strain but the final 20 were rough on everyone. The 3 days in Vegas left us all unprepared. The SuperStar Motel in El Centro, CA was a welcome site at the end of the day. The ride did contain a descent that won’t be forgotten. We descended 2500+ feet and averaged well over 40 miles an hour. We all slept very well. Tomorrow we have a long day, although flatter, in the desert. The desert is a stark contrast to anything we get to ride in Virginia.



    George: David, are we going to Mexico?

    David: No.

    George: Then why are we going through a border patrol station?

    David: I don't know.



    Luckily we didn't end up in Mexico though we came pretty close. Apparently there are border patrol stations all over the place.



    Miles for the day: 125
    Part 2: Vegas, Baby, Vegas

    We've now spent a day and a half staring at bikes, bikes and more bikes. Yesterday we were here from 10am to 6pm and somehow didn't see it all. Who knew there were so much to see? The time has been going by quickly. We've all enjoyed our time here, though some more than others (Robert!). Unfortunately I don't have the ability to upload pictures due to the quality of the internet connection but will add them when I can.

    Today before heading to the bike show we (Robert, Rick, George, myself) got to go for a short ride (37 miles) out to Red Rock Canyon. The ride was extremely enjoyable. The dry heat is a nice change from Virginia. Even though it was 90 degrees sweat dries quickly. The ride out of town was about 14 miles up hill. It was a very gradual up hill and the return home was quick.



    Tomorrow's itinerary looks like this:

    4am: get up and wonder what in the world have we gotten ourselves into

    4:30: yell at Robert to get up

    5:00am: leave for San Diego, CA

    11:00am: get on our bikes and let the trip begin

    6:00pm: get off our bikes and wonder what in the world have we gotten ourselves into
    Part 1

    Part 1: Chris and Robert Do America



    To transport all necessary equipment to the other side of the country Robert and I have packed up the shop van and driven from Williamsburg to Las Vegas, NV. The Interbike Bicycle Trade show is going on in Vegas and we’re going to see what’s new. The drive wasn’t so bad (for 35+ hours in a mini van). The trip would probably be best described as uneventful, but after a busy summer bicycle season at the shop ‘uneventful’ was fine by us.



    A couple of highlights/observations of the drive:

    1) Sleeping in the van is difficult.

    2) Oklahoma is extremely windy. I hope the wind dies down before we have to ride back through there. One of the cooler things we saw was the wind powered electric generators. They are just massive propellers sitting out in the middle of extremely windy Oklahoma.

    3) Oklahoma is proud of there celebrities. The interstate is littered with signs of who was born in Oklahoma. Robert and I can both die happy knowing we have been to the Checotah, OK, home of Carrie Underwood, the 2005 “American Idol”. It was an amazing experience (not really).

    4) Driving through New Mexico is worth the trip out here alone. Pictures do not do the size and grandeur of the landscape justice.

    5) The Grand Canyon is BIG. We wish we had more time to check it out and do some real hiking. Maybe next time.

    6) Las Vegas is trouble and Robert is loving every minute of it.


    We’re now in Las Vegas checking out all the new stuff with bicycle dorks from around the world. Hopefully we can continue our updates and maybe even provide some pictures.
     
    #3 -   Oct 5, 2005
  4. ridetoofast

    ridetoofast scarred, broken and drunk

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    update

    Day 13: Moutain Grove, MO to Charleston, MO

    Today was a pretty good day. We did 190 miles through the Ozarks. The day started with a lot of very big, rolling hills and ended with some pan flat roads. The weather was great, the scenery was great, the roads and traffic were not so great. I think we'll all be happy tomorrow to be out of Missouri and in Kentucky. After Arizona and Colorado, Kansas and Missouri have been disappointing. Supposedly we'll return to some amazing scenery tomorrow in Kentucky and that it continues through southwestern Virginia.

    day: 190

    trip: too tired to add
    Day 12: Joplin to Mountain Grove, MO

    They rode 165 miles today, but there is a lot of discussion about how much of that was eastward!! The planned route was too dangerous so side roads were sought out, however, it seemed (felt like) that the roads were going in circles. And when asked, the local residents didn't know where they lived, let alone where the next town was. Finally, the riders got on track and had a good day overall.



    Day Total: 165

    Trip Total: 1945


    Day 11: Winfield, KS to Joplin, MO

    After 11 days Robert and I have come to the conclusion that our bodies are finally adapting to the rigors of riding everyday. The one exception is we certainly are not adapting to the riding 10 hours and sleeping around 6 hours. We must be a site at the breakfast table at 6:30am. I was so tired at the beginning of today's ride that I drooled on myself while in a half conscience state. Yeah, not a great moment but it was easily remedied with a coke and a powergel. Today there wasn't much wind (relative to the last 3 days) so the ride went by pretty quick.

    One way to pass the time is to do some day dreaming, but you know you're bad off when your best day dream involves getting more than 6 hours sleep.

    Day: 164 miles

    Trip: 1780 miles


    Day 10: Mullinville, KS to Winfield, KS

    I spoke with Robert about 6pm our time and today sounded a lot like the last couple days - wind, wind and more wind - all of it in their faces! Robert said at one point it was all they could do to maintain 12-13 mph. For a while they were on a side road and Jack was able to use the van as a windbreak for them. They had just finished eating and are hoping to get few hours in before stopping for the night.

    We ask all readers to pray for TAILWINDS!! Your efforts will be appreciated by the guys.

    While riding today I wrote a haiku poem. Want to hear it? ...well here it goes:

    Wind, wind, wind, wind, wind

    wind, wind, wind, wind, wind, wind, wind

    Chris very unhappy

    I hope you enjoyed the poem. Kansas seems to have an abundance wind, cows and trucks. Of the three the at least the cows won't blow you off the road.

    Day: 169 miles

    Trip: 1516 miles
    Day 9: Syracuse to Mullinville, KS

    This morning at breakfast they met a couple who were riding their bikes from Winter Garden, CO to Houston to attend a quilt show. However, the headwinds are continuing today and the couple decided to turn back home, gather up their car, and drive to Houston. I guess this story was relayed to us to make the point as to how strong the headwinds are!!

    The winds did continue throughout the day and progress was slow and frustrating. To top it off, the town they planned on staying in had all of its lodgings booked up due to a rodeo, so they had to load up in the van and drive back to Dodge City where they spent the night.

    Daily Miles: 144

    Total: 1257
    Day 8: Walsenburg, CO to Syracuse, KS

    Friday was an 187 mile day, hampered by strong headwinds. They thought when they hit the plains the winds would be tailwinds, but so far the wind gods are being nasty to them. Robert won the Kansas State Line sprint. It was a long hard day.

    We started with breakfast at a local cafe. The locals were quite amused by our outfits. One of the cowboy clad (yep, cowboy hat and everything) commented that that was the nicest behind he'd seen in a long time as we walked by. The group then broke into laughter.

    Day Total: 187

    Trip Total: 1113
    Day 7: Pagosa Springs to Walsenburg, CO

    (This is Steve inputting for the guys.) They completed 180+/- miles with again a fair amount of climbing. The big excitement of the day was when Barry Messmer (sp) showed up out of no where! Barry is an "old racing buddy" of David's and George's so they were very suprised and touched that Barry would drive some 5 hours to ride with them. See, this disproves the rumor that David doesn't have any friends!! It sounded like the group was glad to have another wheel to ride behind. It got quite cold as they climbed through the last mountain pass which made riding near impossible.

    On Friday they will take Route 10 with a goal of reaching Garden City, KS, making it a 200 plus mile day.

    The hard part of the day, beyond climbing to almost 11,000 feet was the cold weather. At the top of Wolf Creek Pass it couldn't have been much over freezing and there was even some snow on the ground. When we got to the top of the first climb the van was waiting for us. The warm van was too appealing for some as David and I (Chris) were the only ones who attempted either of the descents. We both froze while heading down the mountains. At the bottom of the first descent we were welccomed by warm weather and sunshine while after the second descent it was already dark so we stopped at the van for more clothing. I put on just about everthing I had in my bag. Leg warmers, knee warmers, arm warmers, Robert's knit cap, t-shirt, long sleeve shirt and more. I'll try to add some more details later.

    Day Total: 180+/-

    Trip Total: 926
    Day 6: Cortez to Durango to Pagosa Springs

    Today has been labeled a "rest day" since we only rode about 100 miles. Of course, that's 100 miles at 7000 to 8000 feet on what the locals refer to as rolling terrain. You can definitely feel the altittude everytime you try to take a deep breath. It's almost like you have a large weight on your chest. Not that we're proud to admit it, but on a couple of the inclines we were going 7 to 8 mph. Another limiting factor is we are about 10 miles from the base of Wolf Creek Pass, which goes up to 10,800 feet and on the other side there's nothing as far as hotels go. The way to know who is feeling good is by how much they eat. For example, after yesterday's ride David and George were asleep before I got to the hotel and missed dinner as compared to tonight where everyone had a big appetite. That's a good sign for tomorrow.

    We did take a few minutes to swing through Durango, CO. Durango is a bit of a cycling Mecca as it's home to a large number of pro cyclists such as Ned Overend, Chris Wherry, and Tom Danielson, just to name a few. It's obviously a very bike friendly town as we saw tons of cyclist while we were there. It's definitely on the short list (with Sedona, AZ) of cool places to visit.

    Tomorrow, as mentioned, we start by climbing to over 10,000 feet, descend, and climb back to 9800 feet at Cordova Pass. All of this takes place on Route 160 as we take it all the way to Kansas. If all goes well then we should get in over 150 miles. If things don't go well we'll probably still get in over 150 miles as David said he's going to start "cracking the whip". Oooooh, I'm scared. No, really I'm a little concerned what "cracking the whip" means. Hopefully we don't have to find out tomorrow.

    Day total: 100 miles

    Trip total: 746
    Day 5: Flagstaff, Arizona to Cortez, Colorado

    Day 5 was an epic day to say the least. We started with a performance enhancing tailwind that allowed us to average 25.7 miles per hour for well over 100 miles. Actually we were still around 24mph at almost 200 miles for the day. Of course, wind is a double edged sword that at times turned into a crosswind and eventually a headwind. We went by "Four Corners" where Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Colordo meet. We didn't get to see the monument because we were pressed for time. Spirits were pretty high when we entered Colorado only to be crushed by MORE climbing, the brutal headwind and temperatures dropping down into the 40's. We were going so slow that we couldn't stay warm and the guys had to climb into the van at 216 miles for the day. Somehow I continued and finished at the hotel at 232 miles. When I saw the Days Inn sign I was giddy as a school girl.

    Tomorrow we head to Durango, which promises some of the biggest climbs of the trip! How exciting!

    day total: 216

    trip total: 646