Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Going Further

Last weeks Miles: 341
Monday: 33 Miles easy
Tuesday: 73 Miles Hard group ride
Wednesday: 31 Miles Dinner ride
Friday: 168 Miles to Ames
Sunday: 36 Miles Easy

The training ride of the week was to ride 175 miles to Ames and move Chris home for the summer. He had already come to town last week and drove the van to Ames. So he just need the help loading. Early in the week the forecast was for strong winds out of the west-northwest all day. I figured I was not in a hurry and would just take my time. Thursday they had changed it to south-east winds switching to the west in the afternoon. Needless to say the new forecast made me very happy.

I started at 6:00 as the fog was rolling in. It wasn't too bad as I headed out F70 and turned north to Atalissa. Heading towards West Liberty the fog got really thick. I could not even see the houses along the road. Considering myself lucky to make it to West Liberty, I decided to wait out the fog at the C-Store. So I ate some breakfast and read the West Liberty newspaper - All of the West Liberty Newspaper. Forty minutes later I was back on the road.

As the fog dissipated my route took me west to the Sand Road, north into Iowa City and then I planned to work my way across town to get back to Highway 6 before heading through Tiffin. This was no problem since it was 9:00 by now and traffic was pretty light.

Highway 6 from Iowa City to Marengo looked to be the busiest road of the entire trip. Once I got past the new high school they were building in Tiffin, and the dump truck traffic, it was not an issue. Marengo to Belle Plaine was a great ride. There was about a 5 mph tail wind and the road had a paved shoulder. A quick stop in Belle Plaine and I was off through Chelsea (2008 RAGBRAI stop) and into Tama (2008 RAGRBAI overnight).

Marshalltown was to be the lunch stop at the 135 miles mark and call Chris to have him come ride towards me. I passed the first C-Store in town to grab one on the other side of town but one never appeared. After Marshalltown there is really no towns until Colo and I needed to stop and get water and something to eat. As I was headed south towards highway 30 I saw a water tower and some building so I headed off route about 1/2 mile to try my luck. It was the Marshall County sheriff's office and a rural water tower. I stopped at the waer tower, called Chris (no answer), ate the last bit of food I had, finished my water and headed towards Ames.

There is a county road that parallels highway 30 from Marshalltown all the way to Ames. After Nevada there is a bike lane into Ames. On the map this looks like a great route. Actually the road from Marshalltown to Colo is one of the roughest roads I have ridden in a long time. I think the traffic on highway 30 would have been better.

In State Center I stopped and finally got some water. The sky was looking ugly as Chris called to tell me he got my message and that the rain was moving into Ames so he was not going to ride. I told him to stay put and I would call if I wanted him to come get me. Three miles from Nevada I called as the black clouds with thunder and lightning moved in.

Once the storm broke and it was only raining I got back on the road for Nevada. He met me at the Casey's in Nevada and I loaded the bike and jumped into the dry van. I should have kept riding but it was too easy to quit at this point. 168 miles total. 10:30 hours with 8:45 riding time 19.0 mph avg.

Training Plan
5/16 300 miles with the support team
5/23 186 mile Brevet in LeClaire
5/30 200 miles Balltown Classic

1 comment:

joe mann said...

Hello, my name is Joe Mann and I am 11 years old and from the UK. I was looking through your site. I am a cyclist and a member of British Cycling and ride for a club called Hetton Hawks. Its mad that we have the same name and interests. Nice to meet you Joe Mann - from Joe Mann