Make ’em Hurt

After last weekend’s debacle of once again falling victim to dry, hot temps, I think the thing that sticks out most in my mind about this Tuesday’s ride was the dramatic contrast to the aforementioned failure.
Tuesday was a little wet, a little windy, a little cloudy, and a LOT cooler.  I went from 102 degrees during my previous ride in California to the low 60’s on Anderson Butte.  
I left straight from work and rode the Toa up Anderson Creek before heading towards Anderson Butte and then taking Road 39-12-2 and Sleppy Mine Road, eventually looping back to my car and feeling good about a 28 mile ride over a good bunch of gravel.

After Tuesday’s long, lonely ride, I decided to head to Jacksonville Wednesday to get a little camaraderie.  It wasn’t to be.  After just 4 miles of climbing up Reservoir Road, the group I was riding with decided to choose a tasty meal at La Fiesta over a good ride.  I carried on by myself once again and had a fun, if quiet, ride on a few trails before calling it a night myself.
Many of you know how I feel about cyclocross.  I realize most of the Rogue Valley is crazy insane in love with it.  Me?  Not so much.  I don’t hate it.  I just prefer long rides to 45 minutes of pain!  It’s fun to watch though.  That said, I decided to give it another shot Thursday night at the Brewhaus CX series.  
I think one reason I’m not in love with Cross is because I always have problems.  Flats, dropped chains, flats, flats, flats….  Well, this time was no different.  I got one lap into the race and had a mechanical that forced me to abandon.  At least that was enough time for Dominic Barth to catch me in action!  Thanks Dominic!
Getting back in my comfort zone, Jacob and I talked my son, Tory, into attempting his first century on Saturday.
We met at 8 am and headed North toward Rogue River with temps in the 50’s.  This was gonna be a piece of cake!
We all made an agreement to take it easy and have a fun day on the bikes.  It isn’t hard to have fun when I’m riding with these goofballs.

We did have a brief run in with a local outside of Grants Pass when he came down his driveway and wanted to know what we were doing while Jacob was “covering his load”.  We quickly explained and even more quickly got the heck outta there.
From there it was on to Wilderville, New Hope Road, Murphy, Missouri Flat Road and onto Hwy 238 as we made our way through the Applegate Valley before stopping in Ruch for a quick sugar/caffeine fix in the form of a nice cold Coke.

After that, all that was left was a climb over Jacksonville Hill and a descent down Cady into town.
He did it!  Good job, Tory!
Including the ride home from Jville, I finished with a respectable 109 miles.  If only I could have had the same conditions last weekend!  Oh well.  Such is life.
Feeling pretty good and craving gravel, Sunday morning, I once again headed out for a climb on Anderson Butte.
As I was climbing the steep grade up the paved portion, I realized it had been quite some time since my legs had hurt really bad after a ride.  I mean hurt!  Tired, barely able to walk, I just want to eat pizza and watch football and sleep hurt.  New goal!
What was going to be a soft as possible pedal-fest turned into a pedal masher.
By the time I finished, I had 6000′ in 35 miles.  My legs hurt.  I watched football all day.  Mission accomplished!
It’s been a busy week and I don’t see things slowing down for a while.  I’ve got a few more big rides scheduled and let’s face it.  I think I probably need to find a place in my heart for cyclocross so there’s always that.

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