Scott and I got up not so bright and early to join the Bike Me DC meet-up group in Leesburg for a ride west to Purcellville, VA, and back. Happily, the meet up point was next to the same park that Scott and I had found during our last bike trip to Leesburg.
The Sterling chaper of Bike Me! DC in Leesburg before riding west to Purcellville. Photo taken by John, the ride organizer, , 9/25/11.
I rode in my Ruu-Muu which has pockets on the back in which I stowed my handkerchief and camera. The ride to Purcellville is mostly uphill and I kept both hands on the handlebars while struggling along. Happily, for me anyway, I was not the slowest rider in the group: Scott and I jockeyed for position one of the four slow-pokes. :)
Scott and I round the bend. I've forgotten where this was. John, the ride organizer, was waiting for us slow-pokes and snapping photos of everybody, 9/25/11.
Scott and I reach the western terminus of the W&OD in Purcellville, VA. Photo taken by John, the ride organizer, 9/25/11.
Scott and I jogged across the street to check out Trail's End Cycling where I spotted a sweet-looking Specialized Allez in red and white. I'm still not buying a second bike until next summer at the earliest, and I'm starting to think I might want an actual road bike if I'm going to start riding in half- or metric centuries. Or maybe I'll just get some slicks for my hybrid. That decision can wait until next spring. I did buy up a bunch of Honey Stinger waffles in preparation for long rides on the Outer Banks.
I finally pulled out my camera and started snapping photos. Coasting downhill back to Leesburg, 9/25/11.
Scary steep switchback next to Dry Mill Rd. It doesn't look it in this photo, but the patch ahead is SERIOUSLY steep. The climb up nearly killed me. There's a scarier switchback to my left which I didn't photograph because I needed to control my brakes and watch the wet leaves so I didn't fly off the trail, 9/25/11.
Scott in the tunnel. I couldn't get the camera into my hand fast enough to photograph this stone bridge as I approached but I did snap Scott riding through the tunnel behind me. Too bad it's so blurry, but I'm not too disappointed with this blind, over-the-shoulder shot, 9/25/11.
Coasting REALLY fast along Dry Mill Rd. Wheeeeee! Most of the ride to Purcellville is uphill which means the return trip is mostly downhill , 9/25/11.
Celebratory pizza, salad, and cold beverages at Fireworks Pizza. Three newbies and two veterans. The other half of the group is sitting at the table to our left. Photo taken by John, the ride organizer.
We had a blast and I'm looking forward to riding with these fine folks again. I'm seriously considering the 24 mile route of the Great Pumpkin Ride in Warrenton on October 22. And then there's the 1st Annual Halloween Bike Ride & Party (in costume!) on the 29th. Very, very tempting...
And lastly, today's stats: 21.2 miles in 1:41 with an average speed of 12.5mph. I started to think that the downhills must've increased my average but then I realized that I made it Purcellville in 53 minutes. Hm, that means the return trip was 48 minutes... Yeah, I guess the downhills did improve my speed.