May 17, 2010

You Can't Always Get What You Want

Visiting family and lending a hand at the FL 70.3 event this past weekend. No excuses to forego training, only limiting factor was the lack of decent cycling routes. Swimming and running didn't pose an issue. Out of desperation I enlisted the help of Map My Ride, surely I wouldn't be led astray by a fellow cyclist who took the time to post a route on this website. Please grab a cup of coffee or your favorite beverage and witness for yourself this awe insipring photo tour of my weekend ride in central Florida. Cheers

My borrowed ride, who knew that mid 90's cycling technology was so advanced? With the exception of the rear wheel being out of true it was a solid ride, can't complain when you're in a pinch and need to log some miles.

The first 8 or 10 miles weren't too bad, road conditions were fine and lighter traffic meant that a limited shoulder wasn't much to be concerned with. I was vaguely familiar with that stretch anyway, more than I could say for the next 30 or 40 miles of road I would encounter.

Notice what's missing from this seemingly fresh paved section of road? I'm not sure if this was better than the previous 20 minutes worth of suffering on uncompleted road construction which afforded a few inches of shoulder covered in crushed gravel and pebbles?

My personal favorite of the day, and yes I was still following the route obtained from Map My Ride. Nothing against that website or the person who posted that route, I just found it incredibly amusing (regardless of any personal danger it presented).

I eventually turned off and happened to merge with a charity benefit ride in progress, a double edged sword to be sure. Large group rides typically produce more alert drivers, but that also means having to contend with the cyclists which can be a tad dangerous in its' own right. Mr. Penny Farthing rider was the only photo worthy participant of the group that I passed. Kudos to you Sir.

The group ride turns off, I continue riding along according to the map. Paved road turns into narrowing crumbly road, where upon chunks of brick begin to appear embedded in the pavement. Now riding on a single lane brick road - awesome. Don't be fooled by the photo, I snapped this shot just seconds after riding past a house marked off with yellow police tape in the front yard (seriously).

Within moments I turned back onto the main road and was in sight of familiar streets, the loop was completed and I was headed for home. Funny how we can sometimes classify this type of ride as being both a "worst" and "best" - here's to hoping for many more days just like this one.