Sunday, May 09, 2010

28th Annual Lewis County Historical Bike Ride

On Saturday I rode the 72 mile course in this year's annual Lewis County Historical Bike Ride. The start was in Chehalis at Stan Headwall Park. I left my house at 5:40 AM and drove the 70 miles so that I could start by 7:30 AM. It was a cold morning, with a temperature of 38 degrees. But the sky was a crystal clear blue and the sun was shining brightly. After 20 minutes of pedaling I began to warm up nicely. By the time I reached the first rest stop at mile 15 I was peeling off my arm and ear warmers. The ride was through some of the most beautiful and scenic lands in this state. I had great views of Mount Saint Helens, Mount Adams, and Mount Rainier. The entire ride was on quiet low traffic back roads of pastoral farmland. And as the name of the ride says our rest stops were at old historical sites. It was fun, scenic, and educational. The course was very hilly and my partner of late my friend Mister Headwind was with me the entire ride. I finished a little after 1:00 PM. On my way home I stopped at a local Arbys and devoured a medium roast beef sandwich with horsey sauce. It was delicious!

Some of the historical sites where our rest stops were and some of the other historical sites I pedaled by were:

Jackson Prairie Court House just beyond highway 12 which used to serve as the first district court north of the Columbia.

We passed by the Lewis and Clark State Park which opened in 1923. It has the largest stand of old growth trees in western Washington.

Our first rest stop was at the St. Francis Mission which was first occupied in 1838 and the site of the oldest Catholic Mission in the state.

Evaline School, my second food stop, is one of the few remaining two room schools in the state. First through sixth grades are still taught in this building. The bathrooms were unique! Swinging doors and steps that lead up to the toilet!

Claquato Church, third rest stop, built in 1859 is the oldest standing protestant church in Washington. It is still used for special occasions.

Evaline School.
Claquato Church.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

May Day Metric 2010

I forgot to post my May Day Metric ride. On Sunday, May 2nd I woke up at 6:00 AM and the first thing I did was look out my bedroom window to check the weather condition. It wasn't pretty. Gray low hanging dark heavy clouds greeted me as I parted my curtains. I decided to check the weather on my local news station and they said the rain would hold off until late afternoon. Always the optimist I decided to go for it. I made a pot of coffee, made toast and eggs, dressed, loaded my bike into my car and off I went. I stopped at Starbucks on my drive to the start and arrived just after 7:00. I registered and was on my bike by 7:23. It was chilly but after a few miles I began to warm nicely. There was a headwind (of course) and the route was very hilly. The ride was an out and back. Start was in Federal Way at Phil's South Side Cyclery and the turn around stops were in Orting (turn around here for the 50), next stop was in Wilkerson (turn around here for 75), and the third rest stop was in Carbonado (turn around here for 105 miles). I decided to turn around in Wilkerson. Passing through Orting on my return I did get a little rain but the majority of the ride was dry. Dry and WINDY! How is it possible to have a headwind both going out and coming back amazes me. Just my luck I guess. I would rather climb hills then ride against a headwind. Finally, after 74.5 miles I reached the finish. Next door to Phil's, in Johnny's Bar and Grill, they were serving peach and apple pie to all finishers. I had a slice of apple and my goodness was it delicious. I was so hungry I also ordered a Swiss and onion burger with fries too. What a great (and hard) ride. I slept soundly on Sunday night!

Rest stop at Wilkerson.

My beautiful bike.

Pie at the finish! YUM!