My Progress

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Two Flags 214K/134 mile Brevet

I'd signed up to ride the 214K Two Flags Brevet with the Lone Star Randonneurs leaving out of Dennison TX yesterday morning.

The day started off good, I actually made it about ten miles riding with the group before I waved bye as they pulled away.  Please note, I am not complaining at all!  With that kind of talent and ability they had in that group I knew I was "well out of my pay grade"...  When you have RAAM alumni in the group, you know it's going to be fun.  And since most of my rides are solo anyway it was no big deal.

I did get to see part of Texas and Oklahoma that I'd never seen before, so that in itself was well worth it.  I got to see really happening and bustling places like Ivanhoe, Ubell, Tigertown, and since I work for the phone company, my personal favorite of Telephone Texas.  It's actually some nice looking country up that way, I can see a family camping trip up to the Caddo Grasslands in the near future.

This is what I managed to ride of the route for a total of 108.25 miles.

The ride came off the rails at mile 92 just before I crossed the Red River.  I stopped at a little convenience mart and got some food, water, ice and that danged pickle.  It wasn't until I'd taken a big bite of it before I realized it was the EXTRA HOT AND EXTRA SPICY variety.  However I figured it wouldn't be that bad and I was really needing some pickles to ward off the cramping that was starting to flare up.  I should have known better.

By 5-7 more miles up the road, my stomach was really wanting to rethink that whole pickle decision.  My gastric system was waging a lively debate about just which end it wanted to rid itself of the pickle in question by.  Having to stop and argue with my stomach and convince it that, no,  it wasn't going to do either was not fun.  I knew once I started spewing at either end, I was a ways out from help and that dehydration would come on real fast.

I managed to sneak a call out through the limitless area of no cell coverage Oklahoma and limped my way into Achille OK at the blistering speed of 7.6 MPH where I found a nice cool convenience store, I stopped there and sipped Gatoraide while waiting for Vicky and the monkeys to come rescue me.  Unfortunately, I had the GPS in my car, which was in Dennison.  Achille, Oklahoma is kind of off the beaten path of either US 75 or I-35 so Vicky got a bit of the scenic tour of Oklahoma to come find me.  Next time, (and I'm sure there will be one), I'm going to have to leave the GPS with her.

Overall, it was a good ride with a less than good result.  I wish I'd finished as I was 26 miles from the end but I knew those were "Charlie miles" and that was where all the really bad hills would be.  But I was smart enough to know to pull the plug and live to try again.  I did come away from the ride with some good take aways.

  • Don't eat hot and spicy pickles
  • Eat what works for you
  • Mocha Clif Gel tastes like crap and can be very messy
  • Don't forget the sunscreen, my legs are "extra crispy"
  • Know your limits
  • Make sure your rescuer knows how to find you