It was proposed that we start later for Saturday's Fall Hoot and so a few of us, Mitch, Jeff S, Cindy, Steve O and Kevin K, showed up for a later 9:00am start and the promise of a relaxed pace. Many had departed before us and it appeared the turn-out was good despite the promise of 15-25mph winds and perhaps even some rain, which did not materialize. It's surprising how temperatures in the 50s seem so cold when coming out of summer.
At the sign-up, a seminal event in the history of route markings was revealed. Dave, rather than painting mileage markings at the turns denoting a 30, 55 or 77 mile route instead used the lettres "S", "M" and "L" (short, medium & long). This way, if the route maker gets out there and discovers a bad road or other conditions requiring a change to the route, he is not required to find a workaround that yields the mileage markings on the road. Dave calculated the final mileage, printed it on the maps next to the S, M or L. Cyclists could combine a S with a M. a M with a L to create other mileage options. Brilliant. Roy was at the sign-up providing managerial expertise and it appeared he and Dave combined for good sign-up crew.
We headed out on what was a very hilly route with climbs up Savage and Revenge and many other significant climbs. My computer had not taken an overnight charge so I'm unsure of the elevation gain but the route we took was 55 miles.
Towards the end of the ride, I paused to take the above image of the new pipeline that started in the Rocky Mountains and ends in easter Ohio. This $6.7 billion project is nearing completion, sadly, as is the cycling season. But many of us will soldier through the brutal cold, wind, ice and snow of winter to keep riding. By the way, Cindy is hosting a Thursday late afternoon ride, starting at 4:30 from Granville's Wildwood Park. That will give us at least 2 hours through October and ride mileage that maximizes the available time. Maps will be available with multiple distances.