The yard finally contributed some flowers for Bleriot's little bud vase :-)
As usual, the weather forecast was not encouraging. I was hoping the excellent spring weather we'd had all week would hold on for one more day, but not.
It wasn't raining when I left the house at 6:20 to meet Cecil at the top of the hill. She and Joshua had just started descending when I met up with them. Pitch dark of course, because of daylight savings time, but we were all prepared for that.
It was warm enough that I ditched the jacket just before the Park and Rec, and enjoyed the rest of the ride over to Cornelius Pass Roadhouse without it. The drizzle started just as we arrived.
Checked in, visited, saw Scott, Linda, Diane, Rickey, David, Susan, Bill A, Bill S...
Received some completed permanent cards and a RUSA volunteer polo from Susan.
Put that jacket back on. Sigh.
And we were off. I'd say I rode 99% of the time solo, knowing there were riders behind me (not many) and in front of me (most of them).
The wind was mostly unfavorable. Saw a group of riders stopped in North Plains, no problem, just doing clothing adjustments. There was a tailwind for a bit heading up Dairy Creek, but the hills did weird things to the wind direction. The rain increased. There were some excellent bright yellow curly willow shrubs at a nursery along the way; still must get one for the yard.
I did not see returning riders until after Meacham Rd, unless there was a PV rider concealed in the peloton from Finnegan's.
Nice control setup at Greener Rd/Fern Flat. Yummy snacks, rando mochas (coffee with a packet of hot chocolate mix stirred in), the delightful company of Susan, Ray, and Barbara, and a place to stand out of the rain. I told Susan I didn't think the weather was quite as bad as last Saturday.
Then back down Dairy Creek (headwind). Watched a couple of riders abandon at the corner of Dairy Creek and Mountaindale. Headed off toward Frogger Junction. With the rain, spray, and some cars not turning on their lights, it was a bit hard to see when a clear crossing gap was available, but eventually I got one.
The fields on the south side of Hwy 26 were nice and flooded. Then through Banks, and rolling (and I do mean rolling) west along Cedar Canyon Rd. The area before the Killin Wetlands was flooded, as were the wetlands themselves. Birders were wandering across the road with their spotting scopes. A driver of a massive pickup with an oversized sense of entitlement looked right at me as I headed up to the intersection with Killin Road, and then turned left without stopping. Hit the brakes. Yelled. Did not engage him further. Probably mistreats his girlfriend. If he has one.
Got the info control question. I should have looked at it back at Dairy Creek, so I wouldn't have to take off my gloves and open the bag in the rain. Or at least put the control card in the bag inside out. Next time.
East on Hwy 6, up Stafford Rd (no problems on the climb, or any other climb this day), to find Joshua, standing at the top. Does he have a flat? Is something wrong? After a bit of conversation, he asked for my card to put a sticker on it. Secret Control! Stuck in the rain and wind for a few hours there, poor guy. Definitely above and beyond the call!
Now I was headed south for Forest Grove, and the delights of Maggies Buns. Specifically, the sticky buns as big as my head. Saw a couple of women consulting a map. Did I know the way to Maggies? Yes, follow me. I had to slow down some to keep them in sight, so they'd know where to turn - the route I was to follow into Forest Grove was not the one they were given, but it got us off Thatcher Rd sooner. I'd have preferred to get off Thatcher Road even sooner, at David Hill Rd, but that wasn't the route. Not that Thatcher is bad, but it is narrow, and traffic picks up, the closer one gets to Forest Grove.
Still a few randos at Maggies. But no buns! I was profoundly disappointed, and had to console myself with coffee and a lemon bar. I was cold and wet by this point (headwind blasts and very heavy rain on Thatcher Rd will do that). "Hand over the coffee and no one gets hurt", as the sign says over the cash register. Called Fitz and suggested he meet me at the finish with a bag of dry clothing. As Brian was visiting, they thought they'd both show up.
Visited with Bill and the Maggie's control worker (did not get his name), said hi to the PV group that showed up, and then set out for the final 15 miles. Was caught up in the PV group until crossing Hwy 47; visited with Mike S, then they pulled away. Nice tailwind on Porter, finally!
The PV group took the Cornelius-Schefflin (N), Wren, Leisy, Hornecker route; the Rando route called for Cornelius-Schefflin (S), Long, Susbauer, Hornecker. I haven't ridden the southern route much since Tim's death, and not at all since the northern stretch of CS has been repaved. It was kind of creepy (I was riding solo), but there was no traffic to worry about at the left turn onto Long. For the record, I much prefer the northern route - much, much less traffic, and better roads. It is .5 miles longer, but ever so much more pleasant to ride. It isn't just the left turn onto Long that is problematic, but the heavier, high-speed traffic on Susbauer. Since it isn't a shortcut, I might choose to go this way next time.
The rain had let up, and the wind was either cross or tail, so this was a relatively pleasant change. My feet had not been with me since, oh, crossing Hwy 6, and my shoes were full of water. (These are Gore-Tex shoes, with booties over them. Hah.)
At which point, I was on autopilot. There is another 6+ miles to ride, but I do this stretch so often, I don't even think about it.
And there Fitz was, with the car keys. In retrospect, I should have turned in my card first, then put the bike away and put on dry socks and shoes, but there was still plenty of time. Changed, ordered a small beer and lunch, and visited around. We were all enjoying dry clothing.
Introduced Brian to his new co-worker - he's starting an internship at Mentor Graphics in June, where a fellow rando works. :-)
Nice long visit with Susan (there will be a sneaky info control on the Three Capes), where I took back the statement about the weather not being as bad as last weekend. :-)
I'm guessing 72 miles total for the day (bike computer not yet replaced. I completely did not need it on this ride). Heart rate monitor was non-functional as well, so a completely uninstrumented ride.