Sunday, September 09, 2012

So beautiful

Autumn weather has descended upon the mid-Atlantic region, and the hubs and I took full advantage of it this morning with an impromptu ride to Leesburg and back. I'm proud of Scott for making the 24 mile round trip considering he hasn't been on his bike in probably a month. With a few rides over the next two weeks, we should be ready for the 30ish mile route of the Backroads Century on September 23.

Still looks like a vintage Doctor Who location.
The ride itself was fairly easy. There were a lot of folks out on the trail, but it wasn't nearly as crowded as I would have expected. I'd planned to take it easy on Scott so I suggested that we turn around at the Luck Stone Quarry.

Once we'd arrived at the quarry, he still felt energetic and wanted to continue on to Raflo Park in Leesburg.

Lookin' good and feelin' great.

The only spot of trouble happened as I rounded the base of the Route 15 underpass and spooked when another cyclist popped out from the other side. Luckily, I'm used to getting startled there and was already at nearly a crawl. I yelped, hit the brakes, and slid off the seat to stop moving just before clipping the wall. I've got to stop being so high strung.

The gazebo at Raflo Park is approximately twelve miles from our house and the first rest stop of the Backroads is at twelve miles. Now, we'd stopped a couple of times en route for readjustments and little breaks, but we didn't want a significant break until that point. We wound up visiting for a while with another cyclist who'd ridden from the eastern side of Herndon and compared stories of experiences with the various trails in the area and interactions with other cyclists and pedestrians. Oh, and he also hated the approach and climb to the Rte 28 bridge. Heh.

The ride back to Ashburn is mostly downhill and we needed no breathers along the way. We did, however, stop at Ashburn Road and snack a bit outside of Carolina Bros. BBQ. That stop was approximately eighteen miles into our ride and the second rest stop of the Backroads is at mile twenty. But back to the BBQ. As a native of the Memphis area, I am practically powerless against BBQ'd pig. While His Nibs kept cool in the shade, I trotted over to the restaurant for a take-away sandwich platter and slice of pecan pie which fit fairly well in my basket.

Lookin' good but feelin' the burn.

Not as busy as I'd suspect on such a gorgeous day.
The ride from Ashburn to Sterling is mostly uphill and I rode at an easy pace. Scott pulled ahead and sailed up and over 20-hate at which point his quad seized up and he massaged his leg until I caught up. Poor dear. The last mile and half was trouble-free, though, and we both felt pretty good when we pulled our bikes into the house. We just need to get a few more rides in over the next couple of weeks and we'll be good to go. Also? It's going to be 55F tomorrow morning. I can't wait to ride to work!

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