Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Post Chilly Hilly

Odo - 3328.5

Well we did it. My friend Tim and I rode the Chilly Hilly as we said we would. It rained almost the entire time. We were chilled and, as they claimed, there were plenty of hills. Fortunately my knees held out and I didn't have to walk up any of them, as many people did.

The night before I cleaned my bike and noticed a noise coming from my front hub. I took it up to Alki Bike and Board to have it checked out. We decided the bearings, cones were in OK condition but the grease looked a little watery. I figure this is going back to the car wash incident again. The guy (owner?) was real cool and didn't charge me. He said you know where to come for your grease and parts. I took the wheel back home and decided to re-grease it. Now I've done this before without a problem but it wasn't so easy tonight and when I had it all back together I overtightened the quick release and broke it! Another mechanic, we'll leave nameless, told me before that that type of quick release had to be put on tight for some strange reason, but I guess not that tight. Now it was eight o'clock at night and I had to find a shop, again, for a quick release skewer. It didn't look good. Most shops were already closed and would not open until noon the next day. The day of the ride! Some would not even be open at all because of the ride. Finally I called REI. They had the part, would hold it for me and were open until nine. I jumped in the truck and made it with only ten minutes to spare. Seven bucks and thirty minutes later I had my wheel back on. By now I'm sure I had drove Christine crazy, fussing over my bike all night when it would have been fine had I left it alone in the first place. To top it off I never really got the hub put back together right. Half way through the ride, at the chili stop (15 miles), I noticed a lot of play in the wheel and it had been lightly rubbing the fender the whole time. Lucky for me REI had a tent set up with mechanics. Saved by REI again. They opened up the hub and put it back together the right way while we ate chili and baked potatoes. Best of all their work was free. Now the wheel was smooth as silk, had no more play and didn't rub the fender anymore. Eighteen miles to go. After our break we were cold but climbing 260 foot Baker hill took care of that.

The finish was uneventful. I know it wasn't a race but it was hard to tell we were even at the finish. You would think they would have a finish line, banner or something. No. Just a few tents set up again with people selling stuff. We hit up the latte stand, stood around for a bit and caught our ferry back to Seattle with about 300 other cyclists. There were about 4000 people in the ride but multiple start times based on which morning ferry you took.

Back in Seattle Christine picked us up and we dropped off Tim. I felt all right. My legs felt good, my knees felt good, but we went to the grocery store and I just wanted to eat everything right off the shelf! The next day I did a short ride to Alki and back and today I rode to work. My legs don't feel sore but I can tell they need to recover. Tim and I are still talking about our next ride so I guess it wasn't too bad.

2 hours and 53 minutes.
Total distance was 33.5 miles.
My maximum speed was 41 mph.
And my average was 12 mph which I'm sure would be higher without the hills.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Back in the saddle

Odo - 3239.5

Chilly Hilly is coming up fast. This Sunday. I was off for 2 weeks one of which we spent in Mexico. So there was no riding for me. Then to top it off I caught a cold and took the bus for a few more days. Now finally I'm riding to work again, plus I did a 17 mile ride today. I think I'll be OK for Sunday.
We moved into our new condo so my commute is a bit different. It's about a mile shorter. I don't have to ride down Delridge and that's a good thing. Although I have about a 320 foot hill to climb on the way home.
So . . . yeah Chilly Hilly. Then maybe I'll try the Flying Wheels Summer Century, the Seattle to Portland (STP)(that will be the big one!), Seattle to Vancouver and who knows, if I got the time and money I've always wanted to ride El Tour de Tucson, being from there.