No kidding. It’s a great idea. I took a friend to work today, spent almost 1-3/4 hours of quality time with just the two of us. Went to Burnet together and the drive, just at good daylight was beautiful. The temperature was already 76 degrees. As we took the “back way” up Mormon Mill Road the lazy rays of sun were beginning to paint the hills among the streamers painted by the hazy humidity laid into the valleys.
Deer were moving and it was just cool enough to ignore the drought that it seems to be engulfing us yet again. In the open air the tweeting and chirping of birds could be heard. Dove were cooing in the distance. Open air? Wait, how could that be?
We were in open air, you see, (click any of the thumbnail images to get the larger version)
because the “friend” is Lady Peugeot. She’s a lithe 2-wheeled, 12-speed tiger yet to be tamed, a Peugeot Triathlon. At least yet to be tamed by me. Staring an 18 mile ride in the face on Saturday with Don, Eric, Tom and David and having done a mere 14 miles in my longest ride to date, a bit more warmup seemed a wise choice. Since I did not have a docket until the afternoon I knew I would have time to cool down if I rode to work, so I did.
Stopping by my favorite restaurant I had oatmeal with brown sugar, whole wheat toast with honey and some coffee. I had my new Osprey Raptor 14 hydration pack loaded with a liter of water (it has a capacity of 3 liters) and another 24 ounces in the frame jug, primed with Elete electrolyte drops. I tucked in a white polo (amazing what can be hidden beneath a robe) and some shorts other than the riding shorts. In addition to the usual bike stuff and these items, I add the little HP netbook so that I could get work done during the day. I didn’t weigh it, but the Raptor was probably at about the weight it would be with a full hydration bladder.
That view first mentioned of the hazy valley was from Mormon Mill Road as you first get well onto the route, followed by a precipitous drop that sends the bike and its rider rocketing down the hill at a clip that is, frankly, uncomfortable. That’s not the only hill, just the steepest. Witness the elevation profile pulled from the Garmin Oregon 400t GPS that rode atop the handlebars:
That profile is all the way from my house to “downtown” Marble Falls, then out Mormon Mill Road to Burnet. Some decent, but very doable climbs out there.
The total ride was 17 miles, 16.06 of which was from downtown to Burnet. On that segment, my average speed was 10.1 mph and the maximum was 25.3 — felt like 60! Heart rate was avg/max of 136/160. 96% of the time was in my aerobic or higher zone (21.7% in my highest zone) and the Garmin Forerunner 305 calculated the calorie burn at 1,073.
Here is an interesting chart plotting speed, heart rate and elevation. This data comes off of the Forerunner 305.
The SportTracks analytical program puts out a comprehensive documentation of the ride and the 16.06 segment of the main ride can be found here in a PDF file. I had originally planned to ride back in the afternoon but two factors led me to get a ride back home: (1) it’s hot in the afternoon, and (2) tomorrow is the Pedal Into Perdition ride: Llano to Castell! See “The Gauntlet is Down.