July 11, 2011 2 Comments
.. I will wear it until it wears out.
I’m a one-day rider of the 2011 Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic. Granted, it took me nearly the whole day (17.5 hours) to complete, but I finished. All 206.44 miles of it (should have been 202, but ..
.. I got lost trying to find the finish line in Portland).
I should have paid better attention to the STP 2011 Route Map (it was quite dark by then).
I was using low-power mode to ensure the battery would make the trip. As a result, some of the GPS is a bit choppy.
The weather was perfect; deliciously cool in the morning and 72 degrees all afternoon. Cascade Bicycle Club support .. thanks to the many volunteers was astounding. The riders were amazing; everyone played nice, collaborating and teaming to make the ride a joy for all.
Special thanks to my 24 Hour Fitness trainer, Dana for the stretching advice and new (and painful) core workout. I am sure it contributed to my endurance and stamina.
.. for which I received a number of compliments:
- “Dude .. you rock, pushing that Big Iron”
- “You are so strong on that bike”
- “Whoa. Hey look! It’s a guy doing the STP on a mountain bike!”
- “Not many can say they did STP in one day on a mountain bike!” Note: I cannot say this either; The Beast is a hybrid. It has large, but non-knobby wheels and a significantly lighter (and flimsier) frame than a mountain bike.
Thanks to all for their compliments .. which they gave right before they passed me. I kept up well enough though, averaging 11.8 miles per hour for the duration (including stops). An amazing experience, overall.
I sent Tweets in real time of my progress, with GPS and a few photos:
- 0502: Off we go location: http://bit.ly/naZ0JG
- 0547: First stop. seward park. #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/nHzV0g
- 0644: Rei food stop. quite a party. #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/oGxxqw
- 0645: http://yfrog.com/kfdhugaj quite a party at the rei stop. #bikestp #fb
- 0811: Pacific. #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/p5f8Va
- 0915: Puyallup stop. time for sun screen. #bikestp #fb location:http://bit.ly/pSLkEd
- 0916: Puyllup. #bikestp #fb http://yfrog.com/kjyr1ytj
- 1046: Spanaway #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/rf08Uz
- 1231: Tenino #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/pgUNrP (bummer .. GPS didn’t update; shows last location)
- 1232: I keep getting (nice) comments about my "big iron" .. schwinn midtown. #bikestp #fb http://yfrog.com/kj4u1jvj
- 1258: Centralia. #bikestp #fb location: http://bit.ly/qVlLmc
- 1259: Lunch! http://yfrog.com/kko6livj
- 0000: Napavine. #bikestp #fb (GPS didn’t upload location)
- 1540: Vader. #BikeSTP #fb location: http://bit.ly/qODG0V (heh .. GPS shows me at 0.000, 0.000; zoom out for the fun).
- 1712: Riverside. location: http://bit.ly/ovZJeT
- 1847: Rainier. #BikeSTP #fb location: http://bit.ly/no2jgf
- 1929: Deer i island. #BikeSTP #fb location: http://bit.ly/p1ADhN (I didn’t see any island, btw).
- 2004: St. helens. #BikeSTP #fb location: http://bit.ly/nqaCoP
- 2231: The finish line .. after a wonderful tour of portland (in the dark). #BikeSTP #fb location: http://bit.ly/ozDtlL
It was a very good (and long) day. Considering I am such a fair-weather biker .. and as this year has been the wettest on record, I did very little training.
Will I do it in one day again?
While on the ride, I was pretty convinced that I would not. After all, I had proven it to myself.
Next year, I think I’ll do it in two days, seeking shelter in Chehalis on Saturday night .. enjoying a beer, some barbeque and a hot tub.
Of course, something might change .. I might replace The Beast with a more STP-worthy ride .. and then I’ll need to prove it to myself again.
Where do I sign up?