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Ending the Cycling Hiatus

by on January 21, 2011

This Ride: 24.6 miles
Month: 371.4 miles
2011: 371.4 miles
Cumulative Total: 6,491.1 miles

I did it! I climbed back on the bike again.  After Monday’s long ride, I wasn’t sure when this would happen, but Friday breakfast rides into Annapolis are a big enough draw to put me back in the saddle again.  There were plenty of reasons not to ride this morning.  I didn’t get to bed until about 11:30 last night.  I didn’t sleep well.  There was snow overnight and the temperatures were falling.  I had not yet readied the bike, transitioning out of randonneuring mode into local riding mode.  None of that stopped me.

I was running just a bit later this morning than I like.  I pulled off the trunk bag, moved tools and spare tube to the top bar bag, and put the fenders on.  The streets were wet as I pushed off, but I soon discovered that the trail had patches of very crunchy snow stuck to the “cold parts” of the trail.  I arrived at the Rusty Bridge and found it had ice on it.  Soon, Bryan, Mike, & Dan arrived.  We saw Dave go under the bridge.  Clint came riding up and we heard him fall as he tried to turn on to the ramp up to the trail.  He hit some ice and went down.  We pulled down the trail and Clint said he was ok.  We found Dave on Light Street with a front derailleur bent and twisted in some unusual ways.  He reported that he had fallen at the roundabout, and must have bent the derailleur then.  With everyone’s lights on the bike, he was able to get the derailleur moved around to be able to have some gears.  Dan volunteered to accompany him home and the rest of us pushed off (now 15 minutes later than usual) for Annapolis.

We took it relatively slow.  Crusty ice and water in the dark kept us alert.  After Old County Road we took B&A Blvd to Ritchie Highway and then down to Annapolis without incident.  Crossing the Naval Academy Bridge was a challenge.  The strong, gusty, northerly winds made the crossing an adventure in staying vertical, but we all did.  When we arrived at the Hard Bean, Chip was there.  He had missed us because of the delay and traveled down to Annapolis solo, thinking he was behind us.

Mike finished at Chick & Ruth’s about the time we went by, and joined up with us.  We talked about “fundraisers” for Randy’s RAAM ride, and have some pretty good ideas in place.  We took the trail back, and conditions were deteriorating.  Temperatures were dropping and what was water was rapidly becoming ice.  There were no more falls, and soon I was back home with a very salt-encrusted bike.  The rangers had dumped quite a bit of salt on the trail in Severna Park.

Yes, it was good to get back out on the bike.

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