For the past couple of years, I have heard about the social media cycling phenomenon known as 30 Days of Biking. The point of the activity is to ride your bike every day in April. Then tweet, blog, or share it somehow on the interweb. Pretty simple, no?
I decided to join in the fun and began the month of April with gusto, tweeting pics of my rides and tagging them with the #30daysofbiking hashtag. I even began a flickr set.
Work got busy, the brevet season kicked in, and my organized approach to #30daysofbiking went right out the window. I continued to participate, but not as tweetily.
Now that I’ve caught up on sleep, uploaded my photos, and enjoyed a brilliant sunny warm Sunday I can say I truly enjoyed Saturday’s 300K with the D.C. Randonneurs.
This brevet, which starts in Warrenton, Virginia, is a rolling course that traverses some beautiful Virginia farm country. Full ride description here. It actually reminded me of Paris-Brest-Paris terrain. No major climbs, but enough hills to make you feel like you got a good workout.
Our day was mostly cloudy interspersed with cameo appearances of sunshine, light rain, and varying temperatures between 40 through the low 50s throughout the day.
I won’t take you on a cue-by-cue of this ride. Instead, I’ll hit the highlights so that you can get about the rest of your day.
Today I decided to take a post-work commute home through the White House Plaza across 17th Street and over to Georgetown.
Those of you familiar with this area know that, for drivers traveling east-bound, Pennsylvania Avenue T’s into 17th and the White House Plaza. The only traffic crossing drivers’ paths at 17th and Pennsylvania is either pedestrian or cyclist.
As I exited the plaza and made my entry to cross 17th Street and continue onto Pennsylvania, a car approached from the opposite direction (at the T) to make a left. We both had the green light to go and the pedestrian signal indicated at least 10 seconds before the light change.
Something about the speed of the car gave me pause, and I touched my brakes as a cautionary measure. The car never saw me and bulldozed its way through the intersection right in front of me. I stood eyeball to eyeball with the passenger, and just shook my head as they zipped past.
This situation recalled a piece of advice someone had shared with me once. I think many cyclists have heard it. “Act like you’re invisible.” I don’t really agree with it, but I get the point that it’s trying to make.
With my first 2012 ACP 200K in the books and the D.C. Randonneurs fleche coming up this weekend, I concede that brevet season is upon us. That time of year where I start to burn the candle at both ends and try to act like everything is all part of my regular routine.
This weekend Felkerino and I headed into Pennsylvania to check out some roads for the upcoming D.C. Randonneurs 400K that we agreed to organize. It was a gorgeous day on the bike and I’m glad to have ridden farther out than my usual D.C. to Poolesville, Maryland loop.
Our route took us from Emmitsburg, Maryland, into Adams County, the Michaux State Forest, a brief passing through Caledonia State Park, and up to Newville, Pennsylvania.
We then rode back through the Michaux State Forest into Pine Grove Furnace, climbed out of Pine Grove Furnace and reversed through the orchards to our starting point in Maryland.
It’s hard for me to believe that I completed my first Super Randonneur series in 2005. That seems so long ago, yet it doesn’t feel like I’ve been randonneuring for that many years. Time is flying!
As the brevet season kicked off for Felkerino and me this past weekend, I started feeling a little nostalgic and excavated this post out of the archives.
It’s a first-year reflection on randonneuring as well as the touring rides Felkerino and I did with the well-known duo of Chuck and Crista. The highlight of that first year in 2005 included completion of the SR series as well as a bike tour to Niagara Falls with Chuck and Crista and friends, where we averaged over 90 miles a day. With bags!
I shared a couple of other posts of my early randonneuring days previously, but thought you might enjoy this one, too.
Ride summary: Ride the rollers out of Urbana. Whee! First control in Union Bridge, Maryland. Pedal pedal. Climb 77 in Catoctin National Park. Climb. Climb climb climb. Descend. Grind through the rollers out of Smithsburg. Stop for a couple pics. Pedal through the fragrant countryside. Whoah, stinky! See eight cats in someone’s driveway. Eight! Control in State Line, Pennsylvania. Eat half a sandwich. Hello rider. Hello rider. Hello rider. Pedal pedal pedal. Kemp’s Mill Road, a friendly zippy stretch. Control at KOA. Hello Lowell. Hello Severna Park. See end of cooking show about brownies. Depart control. Mosey to Sheetz. Eat an almond butter and jam sandwich. Drink a latte. Meet up with fleche teammates Lane, Mike, and Eric, as well as Scott G. and Alec. Chat and laugh. Ride. Information control in Antietam. The question is… just kidding! It’s a secret! Ride ride. Bonk. Battleview Market control. Eat chips. Contemplate life. Pedal pedal pedal. Trego, bleah. Climb climb climb. All alone with Ed. Gapland finally! Lane waited. Thanks! Descend whee! Pedal pedal pedal. Eric waited. Thanks! Marlu Ridge the easy way! Group ride with Mike, Eric, Lane. Chat. Listen to Mike. Fingerboard. Slog slog slog. Finish. Photo op by Bill. Pizza pizza pizza. Yeah.