Thursday, October 12, 2006

Welcome to the Late Great Update

Wow, over a month since I updated - what's up with that?

Total Days since I "found myself" again: 258
Miles per day: 11.17
Total Miles: 2,880.63 at an average speed of 11.7 mph
Total Time in the Saddle: 247 hours 0 minutes

I rode the Harvest Century. The results were mixed, maybe I should say I survived the Harvest Century.

I tried to ride the 102 mile route, but I didn't get started until about 20 minutes after the course opened, I rode slower than expected,and I got a flat about 35 miles into the ride. So I decided to take the 75 mile route instead. I started having some shifting problems right after the Canby Ferry, and had the guys from Performance who were doing mechanical support look at the bike. I had another broken spoke and a bent chainring (the outer one). The wrenches bent the chainring back as close to straight as they could, and replaced the busted spoke with one of the spares that I carry all the time now, and topped off the air in my rear tire, since I'd only pumped the tube up to about 30psi.

That tube lasted another 10 miles, then got punctured. I heard it happen. So I changed that tube, this time in the rain (it started raining about an hour before this). I had my Tyvek StP jacket, so I was partly dry. I'd gotten the tube changed (I can do this in about 15 minutes now) and was pumping up the tire when the SAG wagon arrived with a floor pump. A couple minutes later I was back on the road. I trained for another 90 minutes or so before finally stopping when I pulled in at the final rest stop.

About 1 mile from Champoeg state park, the second tube started getting mushy. I pulled over and pumped it up, and felt air coming out of the same weak spot in the tire as the previous tube - must have punctured this one on the gravel bits littering the shoulder. Since I had no spare tubes, and patching it would have taken forever, I pumped it upto about 30psi and rode until it went flat again. Pump, ride, flat,repeat. 4 times and I was back at the start. Damn straight I bought the T-Shirt.

So, that was my weekend. The kicker is that I have brand new tires I bought at Performance on Saturday, but I didn't put them on the bike because you never make changes right before the century. (that's the conventional wisdom) Next time I'll do it anyway.

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