Rochester Hills PCT Bicycle Club

November 19, 2005
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This weekend Pete and I went to Chicago for the yearly national pinball show.  We took Diane and Elaine and we met our friends Don and Cynthia, and we all had a good time in Chicago.  Fellow bike club member Steve did a bike ride with his wife Cheryl on the Saturday we were gone.  Based on this ride Cheryl is our newest club member, welcome to the club Cheryl.  Steve also has been kind enough to take the time and write the story documenting this ride.  So, following is Steve's account of the ride and just in case you need more Steve also supplied a multitude of pictures, see this link for most of the pictures from Steve.  Believe it or not I actually deleted quite a few pictures before creating the picture page.  Steve has supplied so many pictures I felt like I was on the ride as well.
David Lindquist 

On the Ride – Steve Thomas (Core Member)
                     Cheryl Thomas*** – New Member (Neophyte/Probation Status)
                     (*** New King-of-the-Hill, ++ Refused to slurp the raw eggs at Gus O’Conner’s pub) 

Ride – Paint Creek Trail => Downtown => Gus O’Conner’s Pub => Paint Creek Trail => Dutton Hill 

This cool-crisp-sunny Saturday morning, core club regulars Pete and Dave were off in Chicago looking at Pinball machines (and speaking or giving a seminar at a convention [according to the Michigan Avenue Hilton – Chicago so I decided to take Cheryl on an inaugural ride down the Paint Creek Trail to see what she was made of.  She is well-trained and well-equipped for the grueling treks the PCT Bike Club takes each week [she owns a Trek-7200 hybrid road/mountain bike and does cycle-spinning classes two or three times a week at the YMCA] but it’s always best to do a “test ride”. 

We started down Dutton Road which was fairly smooth given the recent rainstorms. Cheryl was a little reluctant to “open-it-up” at first as we went down Dutton hill so I rode the brakes for a while … but it didn’t take long for her ask me to speed it up … we didn’t break any club records but we did top out at 22.4 mph before we reached the flats at Livernois. 

We proceeded south on the namesake trail and found the trail pretty empty.   The sun was shining so I got quite a few good photos of our newest potential member screaming down PCT on her Trek 7200. 

We made it downtown and keeping with the “it’s always good to get something done on a PCT Club ride” [haircut, return sporting goods, etc] had planned to make a bank deposit at Bank One and go to a jewelry store to get Steve’s broken 20-years-with-DuPont commemorative tie clasp repaired. We made the deposit without incident, but on the way to the jeweler’s, Steve remembered that he had forgotten to bring the broken tie clip. So instead we went to the Rochester Bike Shop to look at Cat-Eye Speedometers and to look at a Trek bike for Steve.  They actually had a bronze, 17.5-inch, Trek-7200 on clearance for $300. Steve might go back and check that out … they also had a 20-inch Gary Fischer hybrid for $460.  We left empty-handed, but plan to return soon. 

We then decided to explore around downtown, checking out some of the stores and going to the library. We also rode around the Paint Creek Trail and finally went to check out the Gus O’Conner’s Pub for lunch.  Steve ordered the “House Special” (Irish Bacon and Cabbage; EXCELLENT by the way, but I forgot to take a photo!). Cheryl ordered the Best of Dublin Combo – Pub Club and a cup of Potato leek soup.  The Pub gets a “thumbs up” – good food (a little expensive) and a nice atmosphere. We could consider adding them to our list of recommended lunch stops.  We called Pete in Chicago to see if this outing would be considered for a “Club Ride” and he gave the go ahead asking only that we document the ride in Dave’s literary style, take some pictures and have Cheryl slurp down at least 1 egg “Rocky Style”. Cheryl balked on the egg slurp and maybe has jeopardized her PCT status. More to follow from the Club Exec Committee. We saw some of the Michigan-Ohio game and left when the score was 6-0 Ohio. 

We then took the most direct route home – making a good clip up the trail to Dutton Hill. I told Cheryl to follow me up to the mailbox and then we could “walk it up from there” … I made it to the mailbox without too much difficulty, and looked back to see Cheryl “way back down the hill ” … soooo  I kept going until it got tough and looped back to see Cheryl coming up to the mailbox. I stopped and waited for her to catch up and she just kept on coming, passed me up, and made a run for the top! I hopped back on my bike and rode with her. She easily reached the top and should be given the PCT “King of the [Dutton] Hill” award. We called Pete in Chicago to confirm the nomination and he said he’d pass notice of the accomplishment on to Dave for consideration.  I expect that since I stopped on the hill, my own qualification/nomination will not be given; but I’ll await the ruling from the PCT Club founders on Cheryl’s and my ascent.  We easily finished the ride with the last push up West Ridge hill in the North Oaks subdivision and  

Ride Statistics
Temp – 37 degF (start) / 52 degF (finish)
Distance 10.4 miles
Ave Speed – 8.1 mph
Max Speed – 22.4 mph
Raw Eggs Consumed - None
Records – None (first club bank deposit?)
Achievements – Cheryl earned King-of-Dutton-Hill on her first attempt!)

Thank you Steve, that was a very interesting story, I always appreciate guest columnists.

David Lindquist 

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