Completely Cycling related post
Nothing but about today's ride here.
Windy as hell, I didn't want to ride the farm roads. Strong crosswinds from the south means a good chance of a gust pushing me into traffic on Caton Farm Rd. 230 on a 22 pound bike? Maybe not. 175 on a 15 pound bike? Maybe.
So I decided to drive to a trail and ride there. Safer. Why I decided to ride today I don't know. I despise wind. But you know what? Not as much as I used to. It was going to be 74 and these days are far and few in between this "spring". Plus, I can just use wind as my hills. And if it's windy on RAGBRAI I still need to get my ass to the next overnight town 50-100 miles away each day. Wind is no longer a reason for me to not ride.
My car had other ideas than going to that trail though. I was approaching the exit and thought to myself... how many weekday mornings have you sat on this expressway wishing you were going to ride on the lakefront rather than go to work?? Go. Screw the wind.
So I did.
I forgot a little crucial piece of info- the strong winds were ESE today... coming in directly off cold Lake Michigan. A high of 74 was for home. When I parked at the lakefront it was 48. When I ended it was 48. Oops. Oh well, you're here, it's sunny... GO.
Go I did. It was a terrific ride and I am glad my car had other ideas for me than a boring (for this leafless time of year) forest preserve trail ride I had originally planned. I did 30 miles. The last 5 I got with two guys hauling ass. Let me tell you- nothing prepares you for the levels of stupidity seen on RAGBRAI like a sunny Sunday afternoon on the lakefront. Reflexes are an absolute must. It was thrilling but my goodness people just have no clue at all. You wouldn't blindly walk into a street, why would you do it on the lakefront path?? My brakes work better than I could have ever imagined :)
Here's what I felt like the last 5 miles today. Just in terms of nerves. Exciting? Hell yeah! Nerve wracking? You bet. No matter how dumb people are I don't want to hit them at 22+ mph. For their sake AND mine.
The minute I got back to the car I thought of this video I saw a few years ago. The 36 second mark of this video was DOZENS of people on the path today. :)
I turned around at 71st Street. I've never gone past the Science & Industry Museum at 57th Street until today. The neighborhood didn't seem too bad but I was on a very pricey bike going deeper into the south side of Chicago so I turned around. The great thing about Soldier Field south to there was very little traffic on the paths. Between Lincoln Park and Navy Pier was like a parade.
I had a great ride and I'm glad "my car" had other plans for me today :)