Sunday, February 27, 2011
42 miles, and 324 to date this year, after a Chilly Hilly that lived up to its name. It's been snowing and cold this week, causing the Learning Factory to delay classes, among other things. Still, I had committed to doing the CH again this year, bought my ticket and was going to go, come hell or high water, despite the cold and the snow.
Missed the first ferry by about 15 minutes, so waited at Colman Dock for about a half hour in the cold, and that may have been my first mistake, if the first wasn't deciding to do this! Temperature in the mid 30's, stiff south wind blowing off the water, and I tightened up plus added nasal and lung congestion to the mix, and never really got through that.
The south wind propelled us up the east side of Bainbridge, heading north, and made that part easy. There just weren't as many riders as in year's past, and the nasty weather is sure what held down the numbers. Still, it's the Chilly Hilly, so many riders were out of shape, riding several abreast, many kids and parents riding, and the Bainbridge Islanders do a good job of turning out and providing encouragement.
Once you reach the north end of the island, the route turns to the west and then heads south, directly into the cold wind, now augmented by what the weather forecasters love to label a 'wintry mix,' cold rain and snow. By the time I arrived at Battle Point Park for the Bainbridge Rope Skippers food stop, I was hacking and cold, and made the decision to take the short-cut at the next stop, the American Legion Cider Stop, cutting about ten miles off the loop.
At the ferry dock, I ran into the only other Rivendellian I saw all day, Rob with the Rambouillet from Wallingford. Rob had caught the early boat, as had been planned, but reported that he hadn't seen the others, despite all of our best intentions. Given the cold and the rain on the way back home, no one can blame them!
Can't wait for warmer weather!