Monday, February 16, 2009

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Forecast, temps in the 30's. 60% chance of precipitation, mixed rain and snow. Winds ENE 16mph. Great day for a permanent, right? Or a day fit for neither man nor beast. But heck, randonneurs don't know the meaning of stupid, do they?

Fortified with many layers of wool, a complete change of riding gear in the van (two loops out of Newberg), and many, many changes of gloves, I set out for Newberg at 6am, for the 7am start. It was actually 41 degrees and clear at my house. By the time I got to Newberg, it was pouring, and in the 30's.

If Weather Underground had showed it below freezing, I wasn't going to leave the house - icy roads. I was the first arrival in Newberg. If no one else showed up, I was going home. Eventually the others showed up, and we all took ourselves over to the Thriftway to get started.

This was the Three Prairies Permanent, which I can now ride without a cue sheet :-) We had a tailwind heading out on 99W. It was also raining. Good thing I had washed the bike, right? By the time we got to Dayton, Bill, John Henry, Joanne and Bill had long vanished. The rain had stopped, not to return. Cecil and I stopped briefly to rearrange clothing - lighter gloves, one less layer (I pulled off the windvest I was wearing under my Showers Pass jacket).

We got ourselves to Dallas in good time - tailwind and all that. The route is pretty flat once one passes Archery Summit on 99W, until picking up 99W heading south out of Amity, where it starts rolling again, and then onto Bethel Rd, and then Perrydale Rd, where it really starts rolling, right up until the double decker climb into Dallas. Hot chocolate and french fries, and we were off again. Once we got to Rickreall, it was headwinds/crosswinds all the way back to Newberg. But it was sunny! We stopped in Amity to change rearrange clothes again and have a brief snack (hard boiled egg, some Luna gummies) after beating northward on 99W.

Calories were the order of the day in Newberg. The clerks in Thriftway welcomed us back. I had a handful of Fig Newtons, an entire pint of chocolate milk (540 calories), and half a package of Lime Chile Almonds (tasty, and more calories). Also refilled my thermos with hot water and brewed up another batch of Gatorade Tea.

Then out of Newberg, carefully NOT hitting the stupid adolescent males on undersized bikes with no helmets riding on Hwy 219 over the Willamette River on the bridge with the narrow shoulder and inadequate guardrail with massive semitrucks flying past.

Left on Champoeg Rd, past the aromatic dairy :-) and farms, then up, and south on French Prairie Rd for miles and miles and miles, in the sun, with a tailwind. We were going mostly 16-19 mph here. Then left onto St Louis Rd, and a crosswind. The nice thing about the Mt Angel loop, is that it is 20 miles shorter than the Dallas loop :-) And flatter. They are both pretty.

By this time, Cecil and I had rolled up our tights, pulled off our jackets, pulled down our armwarmers, and I was in summer short finger gloves. It was almost 60 degrees and sunny!

We passed John Henry, Joanne and Bill as they were headed back out of Mt Angel; we did not see Kevin all day.

Into Mt Angel, a short visit to Damen and Herren, then off to the market for Gardetto's snack mix and a banana. Cecil had Smartfood. We knew we were headed back into a headwind, which only seemed to be increasing as the day went on. Flags were standing out straight from flagpoles. Trees were swaying. Caution tape was flapping.

The westbound section was actually not so bad, but as soon as we turned north on Manning Rd... Whack. We plowed determinedly north. The stretch on Arbor Grove seemed longer than it should have :-) Somewhere along there we finally turned on our lights, mostly to be seen. We could still see quite well. It did not get dark until we passed Champoeg Park.

The stretch from the park to Hwy 219 also seemed really long. I could see Hwy 219 up ahead, but it just didn't get any closer. Sort of like seeing Hwy 101 from Parpala Rd on the Cape Disappointment perm.

Then over the Willamette, winching our way up to the turn onto Wynooski Road and the final stretch through Newberg.

We rolled our bikes right into the store, so we wouldn't have to take turns watching them (the checkers all welcomed us back). Cherie noted that I was back, after sounding uncommitted in December :-)

No speed records set on this outing.

Final rituals completed, we adjourned to Burgerville for post-ride hot food. Then home. I was shaking inside by the time I got home, and showered and collapsed. To say I was worthless today is an understatement...

5 comments:

beth h said...

Assuming you were still worthless later in the day, please reassure me and your many other fans that you took a real rest day. Yes?

lynnef said...

I did nothing more stressful today than walk up and down the stairs a few times, in search of food. Read a couple of books. Took some ibuprofen. I'm really good at sloth.

beth h said...

Sloth. Excellent.

Just got home tonight from 13-hour drive home from The In-Laws. After five days off my bike I am SO ready to ride again. Yippee!

Kevin said...

You saw me Lynne! I saw you at Thriftway at the beginning, and rode next to you and Cecil for a very short chat a few miles in before dropping back. (a no fenders on my bike and wet roads thing) I stuck with the tandem as we passed you at the weigh station.

Yup, a tough ride, but one more down on your way to the next R-12!

Chuck B. said...

You and Cecil truly fit the title "Road Animal".

I'm just hoping for some asphalt time in the relatively near future...