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Rochester Hills PCT Bike Club 3/7/2004
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I hate to report bad news, but this past week we lost one of our favorite eating establishments.  The Sagebrush Cantina along with a few other businesses in the same block of Lake Orion burned to the ground.  Check out this link for an article on the Sagebrush.  Hopefully the owner will rebuild and we will be able to continue the tradition of great Mexican lunches in the near future.  The club has had discussion recently about donating a portion of the proceeds from promotional sales to the rebuild the Sagebrush fund.  So, if you want to help out you might want to consider ordering more items.  

Multiple weekend rides is starting to become the norm as opposed to the infrequent exception.  Like the past couple weekends Bob and I went on a late Friday afternoon ride.  Even though the wind outside was extremely strong out of the northwest, gusts up to 50 mph, we still did a 17.2 mile ride.  We took a somewhat regular route south and east and we ended up at Bloomer Park.  The lower trails were still very muddy and wet so we decided to stick to the high ground.  When we came to the wooden steps we decided to try and carry our bikes to the top.  I didn’t count but there must be at least 100 steps.  I thought it was going to be more difficult than it turned out to be.  I think having my new bike being partially aluminum helped out.  It was good exercise carrying our bikes up these steps and I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again.  The ride home was very interesting, with the strong wind.  At one point when we were riding straight into the cross wind a gust actually picked my bike and me off the ground and moved me over about 10 inches to the side.  This was a really weird feeling that I had never experienced before.  I believe it was much more dangerous riding in the high wind than traveling over the snow during the winter.  At some points while riding against the wind while going down hill we almost came to a stop it was blowing so hard.  It was a real workout getting home.  Even though we only went 17 miles it was without a doubt the most difficult ride I have done to date.  The one good thing about this Friday ride was the temperature was warm, 66°F, it doesn’t get any better than that. 

Our scheduled club ride again this week was held on Sunday March 7, 2004 and was attended by the full group of core members; Bob, Pete, Rich, Steve and myself.  We decided next week’s ride would be on Saturday March 13, 2004.  Unlike last week when we took it a little bit easier than normal, this week’s ride was not for beginners.  The wind was still blowing, not like Friday, but still hard enough to make it a little more difficult that normal.  When we first started the sun was out in brilliance making it feel warm.  I think it was in the low 40’s °F when we started.  The sun only lasted for the first half hour and as the clouds rolled in the temperature dropped.  It was around 35°F when we finished around 2:00 pm. 

We took side streets to the Hamlin Pub and arrived around 11:15 am.  The pub wasn’t open yet so we decided to keep riding until noon when the Pub opens. 

Bob brought with him a sheet of bubble wrap.  He had it stowed in his burrito basket and it was approximately 18 inches wide by 6 feet long.  I can’t remember what street we were on, but Bob stopped and laid the sheet of bubble wrap on the sidewalk.  There was a large apartment complex just to the right of the sidewalk.  Pete was selected as the first person to ride over the bubble wrap.  Pete thought it was an honor that he was selected to be the first to go over, but actually since we had never done this before we were actually concerned the bike tire might slip on the bubble wrap causing the bike to be thrown sideways resulting in a potentially serious crash.  This was the real reason Pete went first, he has the most experience crashing and none of us wanted to be the guinea pig.  Pete backed up a ways before he headed toward the wrap.  He got going pretty good and pedaled right over that bubble wrap.  It sounded like a machine gun.  I was next and I rode over the wrap even a bit faster than Pete, and again it sounded like more gunfire.  The rest of the group quickly rode over the wrap and we decided we had better get out of there before the police showed up.  We were sure someone in the apartment complex would report the repeated gunfire outside. 

We headed east and ended up at Borden Park and we rode back to check out the new soccer fields.  There is a lot of parking back by these new fields, it will be very nice when they open this portion.  We took a dirt trail at the end of the new fields that dumped us out into a subdivision.  This little sub was built around a small lake.  After leaving the sub we headed back north again to a 7-Eleven in a gas station in Shelby Township at Dequindre and Hamlin, Pete wanted a Slurpee.  After a short rest at the 7-Eleven we started back to Hamlin Pub.  A light rain was starting to fall as we traveled back to the Pub.  Rich had a function at home so he couldn’t join us this week for lunch and headed for home while the rest of us stopped for refueling. 

As usual the lunches and pops were very good.  I order my usual Monte Cristo and Steve order a Fat Jim sandwich.  Steve and I decided to split our sandwiches, so I had half of his Fat Jim and Steve had half of my Monte Cristo.  I have to admit the Fat Jim was very good.  Pete remembered to bring his student ID and got a 10% discount for his meal only, not that it saved him any money it just got our waitress a little better tip.  Pete was a sad sight at lunch.  He got the waitress to bring him a small bag of ice to put on his right knee as we sat at the table.  I think the multiple nights of playing hockey each week are starting to get the better of his knee, it isn’t the bike riding. 

After we finished lunch we were happy to see that the rain had stopped.  We had a nice hard ride home.  Between the hills and the wind we had to work hard to get home.  We did set a new speed record on the way home.  Heading north on Livernios there is a nice downhill area between Walton and Tienken.  While on the sidewalk we took advantage of the downhill and we set a new maximum speed of 30.2 mph.  Following are the rest of the ride statistics, 22.86 total miles, 10.6 mph average speed and a total time on bike of 2 hr 16 minutes and 43 seconds.  Now that we have exceeded the 30 mph barrier we now have a new goal.  

Thanks again for checking in on us.  Steve did bring his camera so I will be posting pictures shortly, check back later for the pictures.

David Lindquist