Today was Day 2 of the Coast The Coast bicycle ride to raise money for MS. It was again scheduled to be 85 miles. After riding 85 yesterday, I didn’t think I had the strength to make it that far again today. Teammates Kathy, Stephanie and I latched on to a pack of 20 riders from Team Trane in the morning and used the power of the pack to pull along at an 18 MPH pace. Using the same energy, I’d be going about 15, but there is strength in a pack. We were rolling along until we got to a rest stop. They took too long of a break, so the three of us headed out and thought we’d go a little slower until they caught up and then we’d fly again. They didn’t catch up by the time we got to the next rest stop and we pulled in. It wasn’t long until I saw Team Trane flying past the rest stop, so I yelled at Kathy and Stephanie and we took off to catch them. Stephanie sprinted and caught up. We were in a town and I had them in my sights but I couldn’t reel them in. Kathy got held up by car traffic at a stop sign, so she was behind me. I spent way too much energy trying to catch them and just when I thought I was there the Trane left town and really took off. I used much more energy trying to catch them than I would have saved being in the pack. It wasn’t long before we got to the lunch break and I thought I was done. I could barely get food and eat it. Fortunately, I ate the right things at lunch and got my energy back. I really thought I was done.
Just as we were ready to leave, I looked out the window and heavy rain was falling. Team Trane was lollygagging again, so we headed out to brave the rain. It was pretty hard for 10 minutes but let up and was intermittent for a couple of hours. Besides being cold and uncomfortable, rain makes the roads slick and it makes things stick to the tires. At mile 55, I felt my rear tire get soft. The other two were ahead of me and I pulled over to fix the flat. I found a good chunk of sea shell stuck in the tire, it took me longer than normal to change the tire but was soon on my way. That stretch of road was named Flat Alley but the support crews because of all shell pieces caught in tires. I heard one guy had five flats.
I spent most of the afternoon pedaling alone at a steady pace. MS does a great job of organizing the event, they paint arrows on the street so you know where to turn. I wasn’t paying attention and missed a turn. I realized it a couple of miles later when the road came to a dead end at the ocean. Not what I needed. I pedaled back but didn’t see any other cyclists and the road was too wide to see the small painted arrows. Finally I saw a cyclist make a turn about a quarter mile ahead of me so i got back on track and got in a few extra miles and rolled into to Cape May.
It was a great weekend, mainly because I was able to raise over $600 for MS thanks to the generosity of my friends. Thank you all. Next year I aiming for $1,000, so be ready.
On the way home, I realized I didn’t take any pictures all day, I guess I was too wet and tired. While driving up I-2t87, the sun gave me one peek for the day, so I pulled out my point-and-shoot and made a couple of shots over the steering wheel. Much better quality than yesterday’s iPhone shots. Time/speed report