About a month ago when Owen and I were on our bike packing trip, I decided I'd like to do a century ride. I've long wanted to do a century ride but have been somewhat intimidated by, well, riding 100 miles all at once. On top of that, a lot of the organized century rides are pretty challenging. But Owen came up with a century ride idea that sounded good to me so I'm going to give it a go!
Owen came up with a hundred mile route that is all on bike trails, most of them crushed limestone. I'll ride my comfortable Salsa Vaya and Owen will ride his Salsa Mukluk. Owen has done a half a dozen century rides before (he completed one yesterday as part of his ten ride personal road biking challenge) but he's never ridden a century on a fat bike. So we'll both be doing something new - I'll do my first century and Owen will do his first fat bike century.
The route will be fairly easy to ride and I plan to stop a lot along the way to rest and drink coffee (I do that on most every ride no matter the length!). Still, the ride will be an amazing challenge. We're planning to do the ride, weather permitting, in two weeks which means that I have to get out on my bike and put in some miles so I'm ready for the ride!
So I went for a 13 mile ride today. It was a mostly gravel route and my pace was a bit faster than my normal gravel average of about 10 mph. The day was nearly perfect for a ride, albeit a bit warm at 82 degrees with a headwind for much of the route. Still, the ride today was a reminder of why I like riding gravel so much.
There were few cars. The gravel today was dry and the majority of the asphalt smooth. I could hear crickets chirping in the fields. Saw dozens of grasshoppers hopping across my path. Heard the rustling of the wind through the corn and the sound of my tires on the gravel. I noticed how beautiful the corn and soybeans are now that they are turning from green to yellowish brown. I noticed the coming of fall. The sun on my face and the breeze blowing past me as I pedaled on my way.