Monday, March 20, 2017

Success With Rickey's Populaire

Last weekend was the Oregon Randonneurs Rickey's Populaire.  A fun ride.  It has two climbs, and much gentle rolling, rural scenery, and finishes at a brewpub.  Can't go wrong.

In previous years I have ridden to the start, since it was along my regular work commute, and fairly mindless.  Not up to that this year; I was just going for success.

The weather took a sudden turn for the worse, so, of course, I modified the wardrobe.  To keep my feet dry, I wear the Showers Pass Waterproof Socks, my Lake boots (if they were waterproof, it didn't last), and some battered Endura shoe covers over that.  My feet get damp, but they don't get wet, so I suspect all the liquid is self-generated.

No plans to ride with anyone, but that's ok.

But wait!  At the drippy start (riders huddling under RBA Susan France's car hatch), a car pulled up.  It was Andrew, who I haven't seen riding in awhile.  But the bike...  he pulled a lovely Atlantis out of his car, with dual old-style Schmidt E-6 headlamps.  Wait.  Wait.  Wait.  "You bought David R's Atlantis!  Good deal!" (mystery of why he was selling many bike parts solved; he didn't need them any longer)

He allowed as he had not been riding and it would be slow and lonesome.  I was quick to assure him it wouldn't be (lonesome, that is).

His front bag, sadly, was still back in his garage.  He had a reusable grocery sack in which to stow items, but no way to attach it.  But wait!  I had a Rivendell-approved John's Irish Strap in my saddlebag.

At 9am we set out.  Given the weather forecast (plug for the Epic Ride Weather app), it wasn't a large crowd.

Andrew, Ray, and I were toward the back, and rode "together" for the entire route.  Sometimes they'd get ahead and wait.  Sometimes we'd be stopped, and I'd go on and they'd quickly catch up.

So we spent a rainy day chasing colorful zip-ties.  I was, of course, slow on the climbs, but I got there.  No walking, which might have been a possibility on Plumlee.

The first four hours were continuous rain, but not cold rain.  While every single watercourse was full, and the Killin wetlands were really full, and Gales Creek was higher than I've seen it, there was only one very shallow road flood - Gaston Road, where the Tualatin River and Wapato Creek bracket the road.

We were mostly quartering into the wind until somewhere on Gales Creek Rd.  Fortunately we turned east just as the wind was racheting up to "really annoying", and enjoyed the push to the end.

From Gaston until the end (20 miles), the rain stopped, which was also enjoyable.   We stopped on LaFollette Road to pull of the rain gear and maybe dry out a bit.

Then they smelled the barn and I rode the final 10 miles in solitude.  Not that I was unhappy about it.  For that matter, no thoughts of gloom and doom at all on the ride.

No pictures, because it was so very wet.  Well, pictures were taken of the info controls (with Timestamp Camera, a free app), so I wouldn't have to take my card out to write on it; took care of that at the finish.

Visited with Susan at the finish, and helped her with her basket of tots.

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