Felkerino and I ditched the bags for the day and rode the Cacapon 200K brevet out of Middletown, Virginia. A group of around 35 people participated. Even though we rode much of the ride alone, it was great to see and ride in the vicinity of fellow riders.
This route has about a kerpillion feet of climb over 128 miles. Ha! In fact, someone said it falls out at around 9,000 feet.
The first half of the ride was the most challenging, with some unsheltered windy climbing up into West Virginia orchard country. Even though the wind was fighting us up there, the clear day made for excellent views. Also,the temps were pretty warm (50s, I guess).
The second half of the ride seemed to mellow out, and the winds took pity on us. We covered quite a few miles in the George Washington National Forest, with the second half highlight being the climb up Wolf Gap.
I loved the route’s mountain, valley, and orchard views, but now I’m glad it’s over and I will enjoy the rest of the day’s beauty from the pictures on the Weather Channel in my hotel room.
It’s quite a shift to go from touring to brevet mode. Instead of our leisurely 70-80 miles, we covered 128 miles. We happily left the bags behind, but then had to be mindful about carrying brevet cards and making controle windows. And NO SHORTCUTS.
It was worth it, though. Our club has such gifted routers, excellent volunteers (thanks Bill, Charlie and Katrin), and friendly members. Thanks to all who kept company with us!
Back to touring mode tomorrow for ONE more PRECIOUS day.