Saturday, March 23

Glorious Return to Roadie-O-Ness

Snapped on the lycra, zipped up the ole jersey, walked the skinny tires out the long gravel driveway to the pavement...and then I rode. Oh, I rode!

March 14th I sprained my ankle. Today--the 23rd--was my first day doing anything other than walk since. It felt good. I'd been going stir crazy. I needed a good long purging ride.

I'd planned on riding with Jeff, more Mohican training, but he couldn't make it. So I struck out from Clay City over Snow Creek. There's a stout little climb at the Clark County line going into Log Lick (not an alias). I rode out to it back in '07 but walked it. Cruised it today.

Then I traversed Mina Station Road to highway 89. That was a good section with a nice little climb. Got a good view of the CSX railroad bridge over the Red River Valley and raced a speedy black dog (20+ mph!).

Picked up Red River Road on the other side of 89. It was a nice long ride with few houses though the pavement was a little rough. Saw a deer sail over a wire fence and almost clear the entire paved road as well.

Cut off Red River Rd onto Dry Branch Fork Road. That was a nice one too, but wouldn't be feasible if the creeks were running high as there were no less than eight low water crossings. One of them I had to walk because there was no concrete ford in place.

Then I picked up Pilot View Road. The crux climb of the whole loop came quick. At the halfway point of my intended 45 mile loop I wasn't sure how I'd do. I had only driven the hill; never ridden it on a bike. It's 0.2 miles, 163' of gain, an average 12% grade with a maximum of 19%.

It felt good.

As I approached highway 15 I'd been on the bike 2 hours. I was overtaken by the third car of the morning. Last week I researched the loop and chose my route based on low traffic counts on maps from the KYTC webpage.

I jogged down to Stoner-Ephesus Road and was on much more familiar pavement. Cruised to L&E Junction, then to Kiddville, then to Levee, then to Willoughbytown, then back to highway 11 and returned to my sister's house.

Until I reached 11 for the last stretch I'd not been overtaken more than a dozen times. I'd picked a good loop, low traffic, high scenic value, good rolling terrain, and just the therapy I needed.

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