Seems like a lot of rides originate from Sugar Grove or surrounding area and why not with all the challenging climbs, scenery, lonely roads and pain. Steve Hewitt had originally scheduled this ride earlier in the season but rain forced him to reschedule. For those not participating in Pelotonia, having the ride today provided a nice alternative. I was surprised at how many came out, about 34, including a few people never before seen, by me, or that I can remember.
Left to right, Flyin Tuna, Eva and Andrew staring at something. Probably watching people go into and emerge from the Port-a-John.
Dave C and Marty also came down and here led the group out of town. Dirty Dan, Man in Black, on the right but a puncture would put him off route early but he would catch back on eventually.
Crossing #33, we head north on Sugar Grove toward today's first major climb, Pump Station Road. Much has been said about the condition of the pavement but the first half was not bad. Soon it began to deteriorate, including a hole into which you could bury a body with room to spare. Brushy Fork is a little better but still lots of broken pavement or gravel, then a brief ride on 33 before a right on Clear Creek and then the next big climb, Starner. Some were surprised when I stated the Pelotonia route used to include this road. No way would the organization have been able to attract anything close to 8000 cyclists if they had to climb this beast. The route continued putting us briefly on 180 but quickly arms extended from bikes indicating a upcoming left onto, ugh, Mt Olive. Learning this I could not help but scream, "Noooooooooo!!!" Up we went and slowly worked the route to arrive at Calico Ridge Road. It seemed as if we were on that road long enough to encircle the city of Logan multiple times but finally we.....
....arrived in Logan at the Speedway gas station at mile 35. Dan pulled in soon thereafter, we had our break in the shade and folks began standing around, ready to head out while the smart ones....
...stood around, ready to head out while in the shade. The balance of the route was a mix of suffering and pain. This route just seemed to really take it out of me and I noted some others too were riding unusually slow but I am above pointing them out in print. There was an optional loop which would add 35 miles to our 53 mile route but I think only Steve O, Corvair and Brent J took advantage of that opportunity.
I'm supporting Pelotonia (well, my wife gave generously) but am not riding in it and I bet there are a lot of others who are looking for any alternative and you are in luck. http://ridewithgps.com/trips/5108554 The route is only 53 miles but there are lots of ways to make it longer. NOTE THE RIDE START IS 8:30 from Berne Union High School in Sugar Grove. I understand many will be there ranging from Flyin Tuna to Marty Sedluk. Yes, that is a heck of a range and covers pretty much everyone who rides.