Perhaps it was the four month lull in the Ramble, or maybe it was the “threat” of a warm January day. Regardless, thirteen riders took on the Pancake Interception last Sunday and I’m glad for it. The weather forecast claimed the dreary, wet morning would burn off and give us highs in the 60’s.
We left Mt. Washington at 7:40AM and headed up Cross Country blvd. into a white wall of fog. It was beautiful actually, in a creepy kinda way. And, although the temps and damp air never really changed much during the day, it was quite pleasant for riding a bike a long way. The route took us northwest past Owings Mills and through the dense woods along Marriottsville. I’d been catching up with regulars Dave, PJ, Isaias, Mike, Tom and Ken and learning a bit about new the new faces on the ride- Larry, Jim, Matt and Dan. As we pulled into Sykesville for a quick regroup, we added three more riders- Jon, Bill and Brian. All thirteen of us continued west towards Union Bridge propelled by thoughts of pancakes. Sam’s Creek rd lived up to it’s great reputation. We even met up with some very handsome black chickens at the tight curve in the road between the barn and farmhouse. Love that road. The group had broken into two groups about 15 minutes apart as the front one pulled up to the fire house. There were only five or six bikes leaning against the wall when we got there, but while we ate two more groups of cyclists came in as well as the four in our slower group.
Our return route was much the same scenery as our approach… meaning, fog and more fog. There were more big climbs and more undulating unpaved roads. Traffic increased as we curved back down towards Hampstead and our much needed final rest stop. I was happy to see all but four of our group there by 2:30PM. We should have no problem getting back by sunset.
I was dragging on the those last 20 miles. It had been quite a while since I’d ridden a century ride and the added pounds from all that holiday eating hadn’t helped me get up 7200 feet of hills. Nonetheless, the ride and the camaraderie felt great as I plugged my way into town. Isaias turned off to continue his long ride back to Middle River. He’d put in many more miles than the rest of us. Down near the start I exchanged thank yous with Tom, Jim and Mike and PJ.
Thanks to: Isaias, Mike, Dave, Tom, Jon, Ken, Larry, Jim, Matt, Dan, Bill, Brian
My flickr set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/27976837@N00/sets/72157632530066304/
PJ’s flickr set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/89177255@N05/sets/72157632517828898/
Dave’s blog: http://bikesncoffee.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/pancake-intercept-13/