Yes, the day was really all that great. I had a wonderful time riding with Arminda, the most eligible bachelorette I, well ok, I know a huge number of fantastic single women, so I'll leave it at Arminda being pretty fantastic; and George, rider extraordinaire.
I was looking to do about 300k on Saturday and had found a route down to Elma and back up through to Bremerton when I realized that I would really rather see all the Cascade 1200k riders up close an personal and be able to cheer them on. George and Arminda were interested in re-riding the Flying Wheels Route and I figured that with 100 miles on the route, I could get a head start on the morning, ride out to see the randonneurs, meet up with A and G, and then ride around for the rest of the day. Claire had given me carte blanche and I was going to use it up.
I got up around 3, loaded the dishwasher, filled the water bottles and headed out. After about 7 miles, while coasting down through Coleman Park, my rear rim started throbbing against the brake pad. I stopped in the darkness and found the rim bending out on the right side. Knowing that I had just a few miles left on a rim that had seen many, many grimy miles and was about to buckle and explode, I decided to pull the brake loose, ride back to the house and switch bikes.
Back at home an hour after I started, there was no time to fret so I pulled out the fixie, located a tube and my trusty craftsman 15 mm wrench (nutted axles on the fixie), repacked, and then set off.
I raced directly out to Issaquah to beat the 554 bus where I was sure to find some friends riding out from Seattle to start the day. No such riders. No problem, as I trundled up the higlands, past Duthie Park, down onto 202, and then up onto the 1200k route where I would be sure to find my buddies to cheer on.
While climbing Ames Lake Road, I happened upon a lovely couple in matching red jerseys and decided to lay chase. They turned out not to be a couple, but the lovely two found in the above photo. Truly, this day was to be a charmed one, for I had found my riding companions, and they were going exactly where I wanted to go at that very moment!
We rode along some more and then at the top of the hill or a little on the down hill, we met up with the motley bunch known as the randonneurs. I have no photo as I was spinning my gear and whooping it up in support of everyone just 20k into a 1240k ride. Talk about fresh.
The three of us then proceeded through the Snoqualmie Valley, up some lovely roads east of Duvall, and then into Snohomish, but not before we were road raged by some fat retirees on Honda Goldwings. What a bunch of wankers. It was like 8:30 on a Saturday morning and they are trying to run down some cyclists on Snoqualmie Valley Farm Road. Where on earth do these people think they have to be?
We got over that soon enough, took the above picture, ate pie, rode back to Issaquah where I split off and rode home
The route is found here: http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=3837081
Oh yes, the number? I rode the whole thing fixed, 44/16 on 25 mm tires. 240 kilometers equals 41,379 pedal revolutions or 82,758 "steps". It was a nice ride. Just enough climbing to keep me out of the saddle for the non-coasting bike, and my riding companions were just wonderful with laughs and jokes all along. You should ride with them too!