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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Last big ride of the season

The Harvest Century was last Sunday. I survived.

The morning started a little slow. I got to Champoeg a little later than I had intended, picked up my packet and layered up to take off in the cool morning. In the half-hour I was poking around the park, the temperature rose quite a bit. I peeled layers off and set off as one of the last group of 100-mile riders out.

The route wound around to the Canby Ferry, where the first rest stop was conveniently located for the long wait at the ferry. About 30 minutes later, I was across the river and off again. All the stops were well stocked with excellent food and drink so I was able to remain nice and full.

Lunch was at mile 45 and was excellent. The stretch of the route near lunch was the route for the 70-mile LIVESTRONG Challenge last weekend. Knowing the route ahead, I rocked it pretty hard, but had no draft.

The wind picked up on Saturday and got worse on Sunday. Battling the headwind brought me down to 10-12 mph for the last 45 miles or so. I wasn't the only one suffering and several people were calling spouses at the last rest stop to let them know we were all running much later than anticipated. I got in after 4:00 p.m., meaning I was on route for over seven hours. I was pretty exhausted but feeling pretty good at the accomplishment. Three big rides in three Sundays, two were full centuries. I'm ready to wind down for the season.

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