Saturday, February 21, 2009

Hilly Cow

My cycling companion and I rode 86 hilly miles in Chatham and Alamance counties today. We started south of Chapel Hill (15-501 at Lystra Rd) and rode generally west to Snow Hill, turned south to Siler City, then reversed the route to return.

It started out at 20 degrees F. The temperature may have risen to 50 after lunch, but quickly started dropping as we returned. Chemical toe warmer pads are just wonderful.

The western half of this route was new to us, but there were so few turns, it was easy to memorize it. It was nice to not worry about the route, and we only turned on the GPS twice to be sure.

Traffic was light, although there was an abundance of trucks pulling wide trailers today. Everyone was hauling 'stuff', such as furniture, machinery, ATVs, bags of garbage, even an open trailer with a horse. Late afternoon, we were passed by a pickup straining to pull a huge wide trailer piled high with bales of hay. I saw the monster slowly approaching in my mirror and we pulled over to let it pass. The driver waved to thank us. 'Share the road' works both ways.

We saw six deer prance across the road, safely far in advance of us. The first one stopped at the roadside, seemed to look both ways, and then crossed. The other five followed one-by-one without looking. The leader will survive.

We only had one dog come to greet us as we climbed a hill in front of his farmhouse. It was a senior citizen dog, barely able to keep up with our slow pace. I respected his effort and smiled at him as he barked at me briefly. Namaste.

We also passed a farm with a delightful rendition of a cow in the front yard, as shown in this photo. It was made from an old fuel tank and other scrap metal parts. Very clever.

This was the longest and hilliest ride we have done since beginning this absurd hobby back in December. The hills took a toll on our pace, but not by much. I will wait a few days to assess their toll on my body. Some of my joints are already speaking to me...

Interactive ride map:

1 comment:

skiffrun said...

I finally noticed that damn while riding the 300k last weekend. Not bad ... I had completely missed it, both directions, on seven previous brevets. Maybe I'm finally strong enough or confident enough to actually look around a bit more, now.

I'm sure that you know that that bridge is the new bridge over the river. The previous bridge was a one-laner ... I heard two stories about how the chicken bridge came to get its name. I'll save them for a ride sometime.