Thursday, November 21, 2013

Mill City Coffee Run 200k, again

Susan O claims it is the flattest, easiest 200k around, and she's in lower cycling effort mode at the moment.  Knowing that we are entering into the Holiday Juggernaut, I wanted to get my November 200k in sooner, rather than later.

Nursery fall color

She and Asta were planning to ride it, and Kevin L and I joined in.  Sunday was going to be the less bad weather day, although the south winds looked to be a little daunting.  The planned 6am start (ow!) was almost even more so.  Susan was also planning on a 4:30-ish finish.  Double ow.  Located all the rain gear for the highly possible rain, and rounded up a sufficiency of food (a couple of buttered rye-molasses muffins, a pumpernickel bagel with cream cheese, some gels, water bottle, and Gatorade-Tea fixings for the thermal bottle)

Then I went and played with the grandson (he's 5.5 month old, 18 lbs and very delightful.  You even get a picture after all my hints)

Camera Roll-1128

The replacement for my drowned Luxos U appeared this week, and was duly installed.  And there I was at 5:30am, in the parking lot, unloading my bike and chatting with Kevin, when Susan and Asta arrived.  Too early for the Starbucks, so we went over to the convenience store for a starting receipt, and, right at the dot of 6:00am, pushed off.  Not raining.  Kevin's take on the Luxos U... "show off!"

Susan, Kevin, and Asta; me trying to keep up

The headwind was certainly present as we headed south to Gervais, watching the sky slowly lighten.  We didn't stop there, but passed through at about 1:10 elapsed.    And then we turned full south onto Howell Prairie Road, right into the wind.  It is more than a bit discouraging when the HR is in the 160's (not unheard of for me; don't freak out.  I don't get pukey until the mid to high 170's) and I am only managing 10mph TOPS.  Often less.  Asta, Susan and Kevin pulled ahead, but we all eventually regrouped at the gas station with the portapotty.  I removed the jacket and dug up the short finger gloves - my warmer gloves got TOO warm and I ended up riding with no gloves for quite a few miles.

Farm, Howell Prairie Rd

Pushed off again, still heading south.  We ride on Howell Prairie fairly often.  It is 16.9 miles, and I am now pretty familiar with every part of it.  It still wasn't raining.  Every now and then, a bit of drizzle, but not enough to want to stop and apply raingear.

Kevin had dropped back.  Every so often I'd catch a glimpse of his headlight, but I think a lot of that was wishful thinking.  I was trying to draft Susan and Asta, which helped a bit, but we were all feeling that headwind.  Asta told me to quit worrying about speed and just concentrate on steady effort.

Finally, through the hilly bits and vineyard at the southern terminus, and over to the Shaw Highway (two lanes, narrow, but still no traffic), into Aumsville, then east-ish to our first control in Stayton, at 43 miles.

Susan was in "SHORT STOPS!" mode, so I bought a banana, refilled the water bottle, took care of business, and came back outside.  Kevin appeared, but he decided to DNF.  He was coming off a cold, and the wind was, I think, the final straw.  He planned to ride back to the start, with what would be an amazing tailwind.

The next 20+ miles were imperceptibly uphill, and pretty quiet.  Farm animals, bucolia...  When we started the stretch from Lyons to Mill City, Asta allowed as how this stretch goes on rather longer than she thinks it should.

Ah, Rosie's Mountain Coffee.  I ordered the biggest Pumpkin Latte they offered, and dumped it in my thermal jug, and a bagel sandwich. Ate the whole thing.  I don't think we were there longer than 20-30 minutes.  Susan: "hey, we had a SIT DOWN lunch!".

From here, downhill back to Stayton, and a crosswind.  And another quick stop - bought another banana, a Red Bull for later, and refilled my water bottle.

Back to Stayton

Then we hoisted our jibs,  topsails,  and spinnakers and proceeded to THOROUGHLY enjoy that tailwind.  Moving average pace from Stayton to Wilsonville - 15.6mph, with an average HR of 138.  That's loafing. :-)

Susan and Asta sailing along

We did pause in Gervais so I could pour the Red Bull into a drink-accessible container, and were subsequently briefly detained by a southbound Amtrak.  Another pause in Donald to turn on lights - it was not yet sunset, but the shadows were starting to lengthen.

And, at 4:36pm, we rolled up to the Starbucks in Wilsonville, rolled our bikes inside (there is a good space between the grocery and the coffee shop), ordered up, and finished our paperwork.  And puzzled over a timeline posting, which became clear when I got home and managed to see all my email.

It relates to this:

10:36 elapsed time. Quickest ever on this route, which I can attribute to really short stops.  And the tailwind on the return.
Total miles 126.2, moving average 13.3mph
Bike computer claims 4200 vf, but I think it is exaggerating.

Wilsonville to Stayton avg 11.5mph (surprised it is that high.)
Stayton to Mill City avg 12.87
Mill City to Stayton 14.22
Stayton to Wilsonville 15.6

Total time not riding: 1:11
stops in Stayton: 9 and 7 min
stop in Mill City (sit down lunch!) half hour?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Coffeeneur #7, New Seasons Market

I had great plans for Coffeeneuring without Walls (well, maybe next year), which would involve excavating my Svea 123 backpacking stove and riding up to Council Crest Park.  Then I was made aware that New Seasons had citron through David Parson's Flickr stream.

We both use it in the same recipe - Italian Fruitcake from the Moosewood Desserts cookbook.  Excellent cycling food!

It wasn't like I had any OTHER groceries to pick up, so put the panniers on the Riv and cycled over.  The beauty of this store is that they don't mind the bicycle inside.

Excellent Gouda Cheese

Ordering up the coffee

So it wandered up and down the aisles with me, picking up citron, mangos, pie weights (impulse purchase there), fresh ginger, really amazing gouda cheese (another impulse purchase), and, after a text exchange with the son, some gluten-free stuffing mix.  I am on his girlfriend's favorite person list at the moment.  More aisle wandering, singing along with "Blackbird" (Beatles recording), eventually ending up at the food and beverage-serving part of the store.

Coffee and Rivendell

Got a cup of 12 oz house coffee (Stumptown, not too shabby :-) ), parked the bike (kickstand!), sat down, and savored it.

Then rode home and started candying the citron.  Yum.

Blanching the citron

Candying the citron

Letting it dry

New Seasons Market, Beaverton, OR.  Stumptown coffee.  3+ miles.