I had scheduled two RCCS rides for Saturday. The weather didn’t cooperate. It rained nearly all day and temperatures dropped throughout the day. I don’t cancel for rain.
I rode the six miles from my house to St Matthews for the first ride. I waited a while, and no riders showed up. Okay, the coffee ride is a solo effort.
I was a bit underdressed with a long-sleeve compression shirt, shorts, and a rain cape. My route took me back near my house, so I went in to change clothes.
The house was warm and dry. I put my wet clothes in the dryer and stayed a while. The coffee ride was shortened.
When it was time to head out for the second ride, the hills and pizza ride, I was dressed more appropriately. The rain had also let up. I left my rain cape behind, as the sail effect is bad when it’s windy, and it was windy.
I rode to Jeffersonville for the second ride. I saw one cyclist on the way, but he was headed somewhere else. At the ride start location, I again waited alone even with the break in the rain.
I headed out determined to finish the planned route of about 50 miles for the second ride.
While riding along North Clark Blvd I saw an old railroad grade that looked interesting. I traveled a few hundred feet down it before turning back. That gave me a GPS position of it for further research.
While turning back on the road, I saw two more cyclists heading south.
I stopped at a small shop in a strip mall that sold only tortillas. I ordered some, they were hot and fresh, and quite tasty.
It started raining again as I got to New Albany. I traveled Slate Run Rd, Charlestown Rd, and Mt Tabor Rd, which took me to Green Valley Rd which becomes Moser Knob Rd. This is “the hill” on the ride.
The hill had me climbing almost 500 feet in about two miles. Although I’ve done worse hills, it’s been a while. I chose a low gear and slowly spun up the hill.
Along the way I passed a water tank. It’s a way up the hill to use gravity to supply water to New Albany. It’s cheaper to build on the hill than to build a tower. Near the top of the hill, I spotted the water tank again, and it appeared to be far below me.
As I got to the top, and turned on N Skyline Dr which follows the ridgeline. It was raining hard, and the wind was really kicking up. There was no shelter from the wind.
I’m glad I now have contacts, as I wasn’t wearing glasses, and didn’t have to worry about rain on them.
I was getting quite cold and tired at this point.
I turned on St Johns Rd which turns into St Joe Rd and becomes a blistering fast descent. I actually rode the breaks the whole way down. The roads were wet and I wanted to be cautious. I didn’t quite reach 40 MPH.
My original route had me taking a circuitous route from Sellersburg to Charlestown to avoid high-traffic roads. I was riding alone, and I’m comfortable on the busy roads, so I took 403 to Charlestown and stopped at my old house. I called my wife to see if she would join me at Charlestown Pizza. I was also hoping for a ride home at this point.
She agreed to come and get me, and we’d get pizza elsewhere. She brought dry clothes (which was great) and we picked up a pizza at Za’s on the way home. I could have stuck to my plan and went to Charlestown Pizza then rode home, but I was cold and wet, and I enjoyed spending a little more time withy my wife.
My original plans for the day could have brought me nearly 100 miles. I cut both rides short and ended up with 47.5 miles for the day. I don’t feel too bad about that. The weather was far from ideal. I would have finished the ride had I had a companion pushing me to do it.
I didn’t bring a camera on the ride. The amount of water in everything made that a wise decision.
I will be doing some more long solo rides this year. I did that a lot in 2008, but the RCCS rides meant that I didn’t have time for long solo rides. I love riding with others, but solo rides give you much more flexibility. I can bail early guilt-free when I need to, or just keep going until I can’t.