Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Recap and Finish 2010

Brevets and Permanents I did in 2010
I haven't posted anything since May about my rides, but that doesn't mean that I haven't been riding. This has been my busiest year to date. In June I completed my first 1000k ride in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. My body wasn't ready for the heat and sun on this ride, but I scraped through and enjoyed every minute. Twelve days later I was back in the saddle on the Cascade 1200k. This year I managed to get the ride safely (without getting hit by a car while commuting in 2008) and finished the ride with a big smile on my face. After a stomach bug on the first day, I recovered and finished in good time. John and I decided it would be fun to ride to the start of the famous 3 Volcanoes dirt road 300k. I'm glad I had fenders because we finished in a nice shower. It can rain any time of the year in the northwest. The Boarder to boarder 1000k stretched the flattest part of Washington from Canada to Oregon and back. This became my fastest long ride yet. In Oregon, I crashed when I got a flat tire on a descent during a 600k. I finished the ride and must not have been too hurt because I took another spin around the Cascades on the summer 600k. I could bare to miss an epic adventure down the coast for the Crater Lake 1000k. We followed the coast and then turned up a mountain to wind our way to Klamath Falls. I was able to get good weather on this ride and camped out in a bivy sack for the two nights.

These long rides set me up for a goal I never new I had. My first year Randonneuring I read about the few crazies who had just become K-Hounds (riders who completed 10,000k of events in one year). I felt like I had enough after 4765km of riding that year. When I finished 8200km last year, I knew that it was possible for met to reach 10k. This year on November 11th, I pedaled around Thurston County with a group of friends to 10,000km. 

I couldn't stop there because I still had an consecutive r12 on the line. I have been riding 200k every month since March 2008. Scott and I found the only day of sunshine in December and pedaled the familiar route up to Brinnon and managed to get back just before the sun set. 

After this busy year, I could only think of one thing to do on New Years Eve that would wrap up 2010 and spring me into 2011. I worked until 6:00 pm and ran home to gear up for one last ride. I didn't want to repeat the frozen toes of the 300k I did last year, so something shorter would be more enjoyable. A quick and easy 100k around the block and I might even be home before midnight. The weather was a crisp 25 degrees and the sun had set when I turned on my light to pedal out of town. I knew this route so well that I was only glancing at the cue sheet. There were only a few cars on the road as I left town, most were already at home or off at parties. 

Entering Rainier at 11:00
Reset to 00:00
I enjoy riding at night in the solitude and quiet. Sometimes I feel like a train following the track of my cue sheet into the dark. The air bit at any exposed skin and I had to readjust my layers. In Rochester, I stopped in the busy gas station and was bedazzled by the bright lights and lots of people. I picked out a Snickers bar and saved my receipt for the control and headed back onto the rural road for the next town. In Tenino, I pulled over for my first warm up break. I could feel the temperature falling so I pulled over and popped the top off my thermos. I sipped on the watery hot chocolate I made before I left, but it tasted like the best hot chocolate I had ever had. I slipped on my down jacket over my other layers and set back off down the trail. My headlight reflected in a million diamonds of frost shining on the trail. It was so thick, I was leaving tire tracks behind me and could feel the frost crunching under my tire. I quickly left the trail for the safer, salted shoulder of the road. From Rainier, I headed back home along familiar roads. I could tell it was getting closer to midnight when I starting hearing the pop, pop, bang of fireworks. I was approaching Lacey when I realized how close it must be to the new year. I pulled out my camera and snapped a picture of my clock on the new year as the sky erupted around me in jets of color. 

Cold but happy in Rainier
Without wasting any more time, I swung back into town and headed home. Immediately, I hopped straight into a hot bath with a big bowl of soup. All the toes were cold but functioning and quickly warmed up in the heat. This will be the first ride of my p12 award which is awarded for completing 100k each month, a shorter version of the r12. I can't wait for the new adventures waiting in 2011!


  1. Awesome year! Congratulations.

  2. I won't be impressed until you top 20,000 kilometers. Maybe 2011 is the year for that? Congratulations on such an achievement!