I rode to work all five days on my recumbent, Big Nellie. I spent quite a bit of time getting the seat set up in the week or so before hand but by Friday my lower back was not a happy camper. From experience I know that I need to lean the seat back back a bit to open up my hips and to take the impact of bumps from my butt to my back. This keeps my lower spine from taking all the abuse and spreads the force of impact across my entire back.
That operation is for another day, alas. I took The Mule, my Specializes Sequoia touring bike out to Warrenton on Saturday morning for the Great Pumpkin Ride. We left the house at 6:40 so I could get in a coffeeneuring ride before the event.
With little traffic on the roads I arrived at the start before registration opened. So I jumped on The Mule and headed out to find Red Truck Bakery. Red Truck is supposed to be amazing. Even though it's located almost an hour from DC the Washington Post went literally out of its way to give it a rave review. I am difficulty to please, however.
I walk in the door and the first person I see is Veronique. Our kids went to grade school together. I knew she used to work there but was surprised to see her behind the counter. We had a great talk and took some pix, then she sent me off with a coffee and an orange and cranberry muffin that she said is "like crack."
|Still Life with Java|
|Red Truck, Mule, and Coffeeneur (photo by Veronique)|
THE BEST MUFFIN EVER!!!!!!
No lie. Red Truck is the real deal. I may have to retire and become a muffin head, which is like a crack head only with moistness and sweetness and yum.
Once the muffin was done, I spotted some coffee (Starbucks, not a match for Red Truck's brew) and some very tasty artisanal bread. Eat, drink. Nothing like three breakfasts (I had Cheerios before leaving home) to get your belly primed for biking.
I knew that some Friday Coffee Clubbers, Rachel and Kate, were coming to do the ride. Also, John, the Hoppy 100 major domo, had expressed interest. Rachel and Kate were doing the 48 miler but I wanted to do the 72 miler. I decided to leave early so I could intercept them during the last 15 miles when the two routes converged.
|Beginning of Rail Trail and Route|
|Clouds over the Piedmont|
Leaves, cows, dead deer. Ah, country living.
|Yup, Country Roads Are Pretty|
|Sun Moving Higher|
|First Rest Stop - Feed Me Seymour|
|The Mule Stopped to Talk to These Two|
|Photographic Evidence of Me Actually Riding|
|Interesting Grave Stone along the Road|
|Windy Road Ahead|
The last 11 miles were a bit of a surprise. There were some significant climbs and one annoying false flat. A false flat is an gradual uphill that looks like it is flat but drains your energy. I kept wondering why I was going so slowly then I'd look up an see that I was gaining on people. Dang, it's not just me.
|This Guy Looked Real|
|Rural Virginia - Gotta Have a Church|
|MOTS - More of the Same|
|Katie Ann, Rachel, and Kate at Molly's|
|The Mule in the Leaves|
Note: John's ride report can be found here. He gets serious props for dealing with a rider who had a medical emergency during the ride.