Sunday gave us beautiful weather for our jaunt down to DC for this final Ramble of 2011.
We left Carroll Park in Baltimore at 7:30AM, 13 ready riders ranging in ages from 20 to 50, riding ultra-light carbon frames and heavy steel, some novice century riders, some seasoned randonneurs, quiet types and loud-mouths, some in spandex, some in tweed. We were all ready for a day’s worth of riding. But what does that mean?
I spend countless hours routing routes for long bike rides out of Baltimore. I do it mostly for myself, but am even happier sharing the experience with anyone else willing to leave home at dawn, to explore a far off place on a bicycle and to, with luck, get home for dinner. It’s a fantastic task if you can do it. However, an entire day on a bicycle is too much to take in your mind all at once. I try, but it never works. At 7:30AM in Carroll Park, I thought about the route we were to ride. It was too long. I couldn’t recall anything more than memories of intersections or a nice curvy road or a nice landscape. I managed to remember what the overall shape of the route looked like- a jagged jelly bean (or maybe a stale hotdog roll). I wondered who I might be riding with in an hour or in 5 hours. Will I even still be riding? When will we get home? What does all this look like near the end of the ride? I didn’t have a clue. It was like dropping your skis down off the summit of an enormous ski slope- so large, that you wouldn’t see the bottom until the sun was on the opposite horizon. You’d just have to take it as it came. At 7:30AM, as easy as can be, 13 of us left Carroll Park together to find out what our day would bring.
Picture set from the day: Good Craic
Also, see Dave’s blog post at BikesnCoffee