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joewein 01-07-20 12:42 AM

2020 Century-A-Month Club
The rules are simple, as always:

1. Ride a century every month.
2. Post a report here. Pictures are always nice if you have them.

Just to answer a few questions that may come up:

(a) A century is one 100-mile (160.9 km) bike ride completed in one 24-hour day. Feel free to be more strict on how you define a century, but here we'll try to include as many people as possible.
(b) A century is not necessarily a group ride. It is simply a 100-mile ride which may or may not be done with a group and/or part of an organized event.

If you can't complete a century every calendar month but you rode one or more centuries, look for the "2020 -- Century Challenge" thread.

2019 thread: 2019 Century A Month Club

joewein 01-07-20 05:17 AM

I rode my final 2019 Century on Dec 1. Apart from a ~40 km ride with my cousin to show her Tokyo by bike all my cycling for the next four weeks was single digit distances. First some travel, then work became just crazy.

On Sunday I managed to ride my January Century, with a bit over 180 km. Some friends of mine wanted to ride in the hills west of Takao, but already on the way to the meeting point I noticed icy stretches along the Tamagawa river, which is at minimal elevation. I was worried about what would await us in the hills. By the time I arrived, they had come to the same conclusion. So we set off for the coast instead, about 50 km south of the meeting point. We skirted the foothills in a few places and again it got icy and one of us went down. We walked our bikes past an accident site where the police was taking accident details with a smashed up mini car that had lost control on the icy road.

It got much better after about 1 1/2 h as we got closer to the coast. We had a nice lunch at a beach cafe in Chigasaki with an ocean view.

After lunch the five of us headed off into three separate directions. I visited Enoshima island then then plotted a course to clear off some Veloviewer tiles. An hour from home I had dinner at a Nepalese restaurant.

We had fantastic views all day. They sky was so clear. This is the ideal time of the year near Tokyo to enjoy views of Mt Fuji.

GadgetGirlIL 01-07-20 05:41 AM

joewein you always do such a nice job on your ride recaps! I need to be more consistent with posting in 2020 even if I only write a couple of sentences and maybe include 1 picture.

joewein 01-08-20 12:19 AM

Thanks, GadgetGirlIL ! I am looking forward to reading your ride reports!

joewein 01-12-20 07:22 PM

I rode another Century for January (on Strava). I am not planning to match or break last year's record of 31 Centuries for the year, as long as I add another 12 months to the streak and bring it up to 100 months by year end. This ride was initially planned as a distance that would give me another century and when the plan slightly changed it would have been a waste to stop 5-6 km short of the distance.

My friend I. is visiting from Australia. We used to go on group rides together a lot before she moved out of Japan a year ago. So our group of friends planned a reunion ride for the west coast of Izu peninsula, my favourite cycling location in Japan. This is the same area where @Lightchop and I rode the December 2017 Century.

My friends had booked lunch in a seafood restaurant around near half way to the turn-around point and four of them shared this monster sized spider crab.

I drove to Mishima in the morning, with the bike in the back of my Prius while my friends took the bullet train. As I drove on Tomei expressway through the mountains it was drizzling from dark grey clouds, but it had mostly stopped when we set off from Mishima station together.

In the countryside we passed many villagers setting up bamboo bonfires, to burn shrine decorations such as ceremonial ropes braided from rice straw that had been used in the previous year.

After a little over an hour we reached the north coast of Izu and followed it out to the west, to Cape Ose on the NW corner. The sky gradually brightened. Initially we could only see the foothills of Mt Fuji across the water but the mountain gradually became more and more exposed. As we turned the corner and followed the coast south, the first real climb began. There were four climbs on Route 17 between Cape Ose and Toi: two between the Cape and Heda (our lunch spot) and another two between Heda and Toi. This part of the road is very quiet, as most cars will take a bigger road across the mountains from Central Izu to get to Toi and other towns further south.

We stopped at viewpoints and finally caught our first glimpse of the snow-covered upper cone of Fuji. Once we got to Heda, the mountain was fully exposed in its majestic beauty. After lunch we cycled to the pine tree-covered sand bar that closes off most of the bay at Heda and thus protects the fishing harbour against storms. There's a shrine there and two small lighthouses. We took pictures of the beautiful scenery and of our group of friends.

The pace was a little slower in the afternoon. We still had a few hours of daylight, just enough to get to the ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) before sunset, but I had to cycle back all the way later. So at Dogashima, about 5 km from the goal, I decided to say goodbye to my friends and headed back north again.

It got dark about half an hour later. At Toi, the last big town I stopped for dinner at a convenience store. I could take the major road east across the mountains, where there were more cars but maybe chillier, or I could return the way I had come and take the road that had stretches without cell phone coverage but maybe a bit milder. I chose the latter.

I discovered it was a full moon night and Mt Fuji remained visible almost all the way, its snow coverage shining in the moonlight.

About 4 hours after sunset I was wearing almost all the layers of winter clothes I had brought, with temperatures a couple of degrees above freezing. I made it back to Mishima just before midnight, then did a few loops near the car park to bring the total above 160.9 km (100 mi). After loading the bike back into the car, I drove back to the expressway. I stopped for some sleep at the car park of the first expressway service area, until I felt fresh enough again to drive another hour home. It was just before 03:00 when I finally got home.

Bulette 01-16-20 05:48 AM

It's hard to guarantee that I will finish a century a month, but I certainly intend to. This thread should provide good motivation to follow through.

One-Hundred Miles of Central Texas

By 0600, the coffee was all gone. By 0630, I had made and devoured a short stack of pancakes. By 0730, the touring bike was rolling out of the driveway. It was already nearly 70°F with a thick humidity that would last all day; luckily a heavy overcast would hang around too, making for a near consistent temperature all day long. The goal, of course, was one hundred miles.

In my part of central Texas, I'm lucky to straddle the Balcones Escarpment, which provides two distinctive topographies. To the west, the infamous Texas Hill Country provides a web of roads easily exceeding an elevation gain of 75 feet per mile. To the east, the Blackland Prairies provide some relief, but a typical selection of back roads will still average 40 feet per mile. I started out west, hill-bound.

Fulton Ranch Road rolled through small hill country drainages, but the overall trend was mostly up; it's a local favorite for hill practice. At around 11 miles is a ranked Category 4 climb, but today, I would be descending. At the bottom of the hill is a wide valley nestling the Blanco River. Across the river, the road winds into Wimberly. A few miles into town, I stopped for a second breakfast. The Sugar Shack regularly has day-old baked goods for half price; I grabbed my usual, an over-sized cinnamon roll with heavy frosting. After breakfast, I savored the few remaining miles of mostly flat, scenic riding along the river

Image 1: The Blanco River (Mile 17)

The river road didn't last long and soon the road tilted up, obscuring any longer view of the horizon. I was glad just to be holding a 10 miles per hour average, even though I was struggling. I remind myself it should be fine to stop for pictures, though really, I just needed an excuse to rest my legs. After Fischer, the road got worse still. Suffering through my lowest gears, I carefully scrutinized my Garmin for the current grades: 10% or more on nearly every hill. After a few miles of what felt like torture, though, I was rewarded with a long horizon and a smooth rollout.

Image 2: Crane Mills Road (31.6, 1,158 feet, highest point of the ride)

The back road ended, and I turned onto a state highway (FM 306) where the grades were much more manageable. The state highway eventually takes me past Canyon Lake, below an Army Corp dam, and left me aside the Guadalupe River. Along the way I got to cross the Canyon Lake Gorge, a local geomorphological icon leftover from when the dam was over-topped in 2015.

Image 3: Canyon Lake Gorge (Mile 45.0, 715 feet)

Not much further and I linked up with yet another River Road. Set in the Guadalupe River valley and flanked by steep hillsides, the road is always popular with cyclists, motorcyclists, and vacationers. The road is also renowned for its four river crossings, none of which are fenced or guarded in any way. A good picture of the crossings has always been elusive.

Image 4: Crossing of the Guadalupe River (Mile 53.7)

Following the Guadalupe leads to the center of New Braunfels and precariously close to Texas' oldest bakery. At Naeglin's, I can't help but try a bratwurst kolache and a custard-filled donut too. I take an extra minute to relax; I have nearly 100km behind me and only the eastern prairies ahead.

Image 5: Wall Mural, across from Naeglin's Bakery (Mile 61.7, 573 feet, approximately 4,000 feet of net elevation gain)

Feeling fresh from the pastries, the next 15 miles went by quickly. I ventured down an abandoned backroad, with the pavement broken and pocked from neglect. It was even signed "No Outlet", but I knew better -- the route passed under the aerial traffic pattern of the New Braunfels Airport. There are about three planes in the pattern, providing a rare opportunity to try a fun composition.

Image 6: Airport Road (Mile 73.5)

By now, I'm back in more familiar territory, on roads that the local cycling group favors week in and week out. I think to capture one more picture from the crest of a hill, a sweeping overview of the prairies. Then I put the camera away, put my head down and push forth. Despite the growing discomfort of the saddle, and the fatigue in my legs, home is getting close, and with it, the end of the day's ride. Maybe next time, I'll pack a sleeping bag...

Image 7: Looking out over the way home (Mile 78.0)

The Route:

Brett A 01-30-20 08:49 AM

32 Degrees and humid counts as a warm day in Western Massachusettes in January.
Okay, this is the year I finally do this. I got my January century in just in the nick of time. Here in Western Massachusetts it's rarely above freezing and the roads and bike paths aren't too conducive. But conditions were agreeable enough last Tuesday, Jan 28th with temps between 31 and 38 degrees.

I haven't really been on a bike since finishing a 1k mile tour last October, so I did this century on the flattest course I could find; the rail trail system that runs through the college towns of Amherst and Northampton, Mass. It wasn't even 2k feet of climbing, whereas the flattest road lop I could put together would have been over 6k feet. If you do an out-and-back to all three terminus' (termini?) of the rail trails system, it's 53 miles. So I did it twice.

The bike I used was a 2008 Specialized Rubaix I bought off Craigslist just as the snow fell in early December. So this was the first ride I'd taken on it. I was amazed at how comfortable is was for the whole ride. I didn't want to stop! My Surly Trucker would have been the other candidate, but I'd still be out there, the thing is so slow.

My Sigma computer, which is calibrated to to mile markers on the rail trail, read 109 miles, 8h 44m at 12.5 mph. Strava registered 108 miles in just over 9 hours, but its automatic stop/start function records every time I move the bike more and a few inches. But I was going for 108 anyway as it is an auspicious number. (why not?)

I'm hoping I get a day this relatively warm to do my February ride. Too much fun!

Some sections of the rail trail had ice and snow, but mostly it was clear. Conditions that can't be assumed this time of year.

The frozen stream running through Look Park in Florence, Mass.

I was out more hours than there was daylight. (figuring a break for lunch and other minor stops)

32 degrees can feel warm this time of year, but the dampness makes the cold go right to your bones.

unterhausen 01-31-20 10:45 AM

Thanks for the pics Brett, I'm just can't make myself take a ride like that nowadays.

I'm not going to sticky this thread. More people will see it if it's not stickied. Hopefully enough people will post in it to keep it on the front page.

Cycletography 02-02-20 05:30 PM

In, and subscribed. So glad I found this thread! I'm 8 months back in the saddle after 10 years off of a bike. On January 14th I did my first century in 15 years (102.6 miles), and on January 16th I decided to do it again (125.7 miles). Sorry for the lame pics. I need to step up my game (picture-wise) for the February century. :)
January 14, 2020
January 16, 2020
The cycletographymobile at Turtle Beach (Sarasota, FL).

Bulette 02-02-20 08:08 PM

February 100
It was 45°F at 8:00 am in central Texas, but it was forecast to break 70 by noon. The plan was for a long group ride, around 75 miles -- an excellent opportunity to push for a century. I started with arm warmers, ear warmers, and windbreaker, which was comfortable for getting to the coffee shop meetup. We were supposed to leave at 8:30, but casual conversation delayed us a bit. By the time we ventured out, around 8:45, the sun was already beating down -- I shed the windbreaker.

We followed a regular route out of town, getting east of Interstate 35 as quick as possible. The gentle winds and quiet roads in the Blackland Prairie made for a peaceful morning spin; the casual pace permitted some more spirited banter between riders. 20 miles into the ride and we arrived at Gruene a noteworthy tourist destination that marked our turn towards River Road. The group’s legs were still too restless for pictures.

Following the river brought us to the Canyon Lake Dam. Having been previously under construction, it was refreshing to see the top of the dam was accessible once again (which also provided an alternative connection to Canyon City). It was around mile 40, and the group was finally ready for some photos -- pictures of the lake, the scenery, the group, and of course, some selfies too.

Image 1 + 2: Taken atop Canyon Lake Dam

The next major stop was only another 10 miles further -- a hilly 10 miles, but it passed quickly with company. At around mile 50, we encountered a treacherous obstacle: the “slime” bridge at John Knox Ranch. The thin sheen of algae on the surface of the bridge made it too slick to ride across; instead, we removed socks and shoes and walked softly across. Luckily the sun was feeling warm, because the water was still mighty cold.

Image 3: "Slime" Bridge

We made another stop in Wimberley at around mile 57 for water and snacks, and a bit of rest. It wasn’t necessarily rest from the miles previous, but for the miles ahead. At mile 62, it was time to face the “Manmaker”, nearly 200 feet of climbing with an average grade over 10% and max grades estimated at 17%. After the climb (and the inevitable moments of regrouping), the roll back to San Marcos seemed easy. At around 75 miles, the group headed off for post-ride festivities.

I kept on, determined to hit my goal. I headed out for the typical weeknight training lap, right around 25 miles; the route began back into the wind, which promised an easy return ride, and easy finish to the century. I didn’t make it far before I was blocked by a train but at least I was early enough to catch a decent picture to prove it.

Image 4: Seeing the front of the train means a bit of a wait.

The end of the ride was underwhelming, but went smoothly. I reached the turn around point at York Creek, pushed on and sailed back home with time enough still for some hearty home cooking.

Image 5: York Creek -- the well known local regrouping post

joewein 02-03-20 05:32 AM

My February Century is done (consecutive month #90 ), with a ride of 175 km (on Strava). I didn't leave until almost 9 in the morning and consequently only got back at midnight.

It was mostly a VeloViewer tiling ride, visiting places west / north-west of Tokyo that I had never passed through. It's an interesting challenge because it encourages you to discover new places and see things you have never seen before. I entered two huge cemeteries, one of them on a hill with a view of Tokyo, not far from where the Japanese Imperial family have their cemetery and where the previous emperor and his wife will most likely be buried (he retired last year). I also visited a cement plant that was the easiest access point to one of the map tiles, despite some signs in Japanese that prohibited entry (there was no closed gate and nobody seemed around on a Sunday).

It was chilly in the morning (5 deg C / 41F) but warmed up towards mid-day so I could strip down to my long sleeve jersey (with base layer). Plum trees are already bloom, as is typical for Tokyo from around late January.

I had no definite plan when I left the house, beside not coming back with less than 100 miles for the day. I had a few different ideas and only settled on of them a couple km into the ride. Even then there was no preconceived route, I checked were the remaining untouched map tiles were and what roads there were in the area and picked a course from there.

I made it to Ome after having finished all the tiles in the foothills west of Tokyo and stopped for dinner at the local Nepalese restaurant that I like there. It had been two months since my last visit, as the mountain routes that normally take me there have become too risky with ice and snow on the road.

After that I rode another four hours, clearing tiles in the suburbs of Tokyo. It was so late by then that traffic everywhere was pretty light.

I did the entire 175 km ride with a broken left shifter, which I'll need to replace soon. There's something wrong with its ratchet, probably because I fell over with the bike in early January and the shifter was then pushed out of place by the impact. When on the small ring the FD now won't move when I push the lever (which offers little resistance), but once I put the chain on the big ring, for example by using the limiter screw, the ratchet mechanism works and it will pull the cable to tighten it again. So I figured out a front upshift technique where I push the exposed part of the shift cable sideways with my fingers to make the FD move enough to force an upshift. Once the chain is firmly engaged on the teeth of the big ring I then coast and let go of the wire. With the crank not moving the chain won't drop back onto the small ring. Two clicks on the left shift lever and it will retension the cable. After that I can resume pedaling, as the the FD can't move back and I have my high gear range again. Admittedly it was a bit cumbersome and I didn't want to do it while I was being passed by vehicles, but it worked.

Now I need to decide what hydraulic shifter to replace my broken Shimano ST-RS685 with, which I think is already out of production. There's a 105 and Ultegra version (ST-R7020-L, ST-R8020-L) and two GRX versions (ST-RX600-L, ST-RX810-L) that should work.

GadgetGirlIL 02-03-20 06:50 AM

January's century was done down in Kentucky. I rode a shortened version of the 200K that I did last February that goes from Shelbyville to Georgetown. I turned around in Midway.

I had not ridden over 100 miles since September. I had not ridden since December 27th outside thanks to crappy winter weather. I was carrying more pounds around my waist thanks to holiday indulgences. And I was riding Mr. Pink which is a heavier bike than my Litespeed which I used last February. I also was carrying more gear. It was a long painful slog up some of those climbs as a result. This is the hilliest route that I did in 2019. The only thing with more elevation gain per mile that I've ever done was the permanent that took me up Reddish Knob in Virginia in 2018.

But I saw the sun and the temperatures were fine for this northerner. It was 32 degrees at the start and got to the mid 40's.

GadgetGirlIL 02-03-20 06:53 AM

Thanks to some record breaking temperatures yesterday, I was able to get February's century done. I rode from my house out past Hinckley, IL. The wind was from the west and kept getting stronger all day. The last 6 miles were brutal. The weather app said it was 21mph winds. I'm a parachute in the wind so it was painful. But the ride back was pretty nice except for some sections where the crosswinds tried to blow me off the road.

My route took me through Fermi lab. The buffalo were out in the pasture on my way back.

Cycletography 02-26-20 07:30 PM

February Century

I was waiting until the end of the month to post my February century info, as it was my intention to do more than one. That did not happen as planned, but I did one 100-mile ride on February 3rd. It was the day after the Super Bowl and I was pretty energized following the Chief's win.

Date: February 3rd
Distance: 101.6 miles

The below photo is not from the day of my February century ride, but it's along the same route so I thought I'd include something a little better than a bad picture of my bicycle computer. :-)

joewein 03-01-20 09:31 PM

I didn't have much chance of riding in February, with a single Century ride and one 40 km ride with a friend. I also suffered some pretty bad back pain while away on a business trip.

Last week I had the broken Shimano ST-RS685-L shifter on my Elephant Bikes NFE replaced with a new ST-R8020-L and I'm happy to report it's the perfect replacement.

After a friend cancelled a previously announced Sunday ride that I had been interested in, I decided to head out on my own to Tomin no Mori, a hiking trail head in the mountains west of Tokyo. During the winter snow and ice make it off-limits for cycling, but friends had gone there last weekend and found minimal remains of snow. I announced the ride in a Facebook group late at night and nobody had replied by the morning, so I thought I'd be on my own when I cycled 45 km to a convenience store near Musashiitsukaichi station where I had offered to meet others.

Almost two hours into the ride another cyclist heading into the opposite direction on the Tamagawa river bike path called out my name. It turned out to be my friend Ian who lives upstream. He decided to join me. At the convenience store we had coffee and breakfast while we chatted. As expected, nobody else showed up and we got on our way 15 minutes after the announced meeting time.

It was a gorgeous day, initially chilly but it warmed up. I took off three of my four layers on the climb. Once we got to the trail head, the shop and restaurant turned out to be closed. Ian bought a drink from a vending machine while I had some of the bananas I had bought at the convenience store. There were plenty of cyclists around.

After another 4 km we reached the summit, which was at over 1100 m elevation and there was some snow still by the roadside but only in the shade. We layered up again for the 12 km descent, which is great fun as the road is smooth and the curves sweeping. The speed limit is 40 km/h, which means I can go as fast on a bike as cars are allowed to go. We came across police handling an accident. A Subaru sports car had spun around and smashed into the guard rails. Unfortunately this road is very popular with boy racers on motorbikes and sports cars.

As we cycled along Lake Okutama, Ian got hungry, as he had banked on being able to buy a meal at the trail head and had declined my offered bananas. So once we reached the town of Okutama we stopped at a convenience store and got some food. We talked pretty much for the whole ride, except for the fast descent where we kept a distance.

On the last section from Okutama to Ome, Ian moved to the front and pulled while I enjoyed drafting. After a quick stop at his house we went and had an early dinner together at my favourite Nepalese. From there it was another 44 km after sunset back to my house.

With this 170 km ride with 1400 m of elevation gain (on Strava) I am now in month #91 of CaM. I'm 6 weeks away from my 24h Fleche ride. The somewhat higher pace with Ian was good practise for that, despite it being much shorter.

Cycletography 03-04-20 11:30 PM

March Century

For March I completed my century ride on the 1st, complete with an ice cream stop. Yummmmmm! :love: At the end of February I signed up for Strava, enrolled in a few March challenges, and I was eager to ride some miles. Strava is pretty cool. I'm really liking it so far. :thumb:

Here are my March century stats. Cheers! :beer:

Date: March 1st
Distance: 116.3 miles

Cycletography 03-08-20 10:28 AM

March Century #2

For the first time this year I've done two century rides in one month. I think it's the near-term "Strava effect". I'm only about 9 days into my subscription, but so far it's been a lot of fun and very cool to see what other people are doing in my local area. In turn, it's inspiring me to get on my bike and ride lots of miles. :)

Date: March 7th
Distance: 101.2 miles

GadgetGirlIL 03-28-20 04:14 PM

Got my century for March in by doing a 200K brevet in Tennessee last weekend (3/21). It was a brevet of one since everyone else backed out due to COVID-19 concerns. Honestly, I felt safer out in the countryside than back here in Illinois where we had gone to shelter in place on 3/20.

Temps were 43 at the start, probably around 50 at the end. Wind out of the north so I had some tailwind on the way down to the George Dickel Distillery (turnaround point) but really didn't notice its benefit. I did notice the sections where the route went due north on the way back. But there were so many turns and rolling hills that it wasn't too bad. What was more annoying was the mist hanging in the air the first 52 miles or so. I was cold during those miles.

I really enjoyed this route and saw lots of interesting farm animals!
The store at the distillery was closed due to the pandemic.
Trees were blooming everywhere
Mutton on the loose! These two had escaped from the pasture across the road and were last seen heading down the railroad tracks. These were active tracks as I got delayed by 2 freight trains in Wartrace.
The animals were pretty interested to see a bike go by!

OldTryGuy 03-31-20 03:00 PM

Originally Posted by Cycletography (Post 21357833)
March Century #2

For the first time this year I've done two century rides in one month. I think it's the near-term "Strava effect". I'm only about 9 days into my subscription, but so far it's been a lot of fun and very cool to see what other people are doing in my local area. In turn, it's inspiring me to get on my bike and ride lots of miles. :)

Date: March 7th
Distance: 101.2 miles...............

Nice rides. Wonder if your max speed location was down Ringling Causeway ???

Bulette 03-31-20 04:43 PM

March nearly slipped by, what with spring break, and an ever-growing concern for the global pandemic. As more and more institutions shuttered, my rides kept getting shorter, but now that the quarantine has become a bit more routine, a day out on the bike seemed more and more to be the respite I needed. So, even with a late 10 am start, I headed out the gravel roads northeast into the headwinds trying to maintain a proper audax pace.

The conditions were still isolating (the hardest part was trying to go easy on my fixed water supply), but finding little to stop for, I found myself checking off 100k in under 4 hours. I did stop when I got around to crosing the local river, however -- I thought the picture would make an excellent candidate for the "Landscape Challenge" going around social media.

Photo 1: San Marcos River at Sherill Road.

The full loop was just shy of a century at about 95 miles; on the edge of town sits a small residential loop of about 4 miles that provides a nice and secure way to round up a few miles, with the confidence that home (and fresh water) would be waiting just around the corner.

March century completed by an inch, but feeling much better about the opportunities in April.

Cycletography 04-08-20 09:37 AM

Originally Posted by OldTryGuy (Post 21393883)
Nice rides. Wonder if your max speed location was down Ringling Causeway ???

Yes, that is correct. :beer:

bpcyclist 04-08-20 08:30 PM

Okay, I am going to do this, since my July trip is almost certainly going to be nixed. So, today, did 101 miles in lovely, 72-degree weather. First short sleeve ride of the year. Did this trail we have here called the Sptringwater Corridor--twice. For me, that adds up to 101.


joewein 04-12-20 10:47 PM

On April 4 I headed out a little after 07:00 in the morning with a vague plan to ride some of the Greenline, a mountain road northwest of Tokyo. I had heard parts of it were closed due to damage from the typhoon last year, but was willing to find out how far I could go (182 km with 1732 m of elevation gain, on Strava)

I stopped at Haijimadaishi, a Buddhist temple with a tall pagoda. Beautiful cherry blossoms everywhere and not a soul in sight.

By the time I got to Ome I had decided on the old Ome temple loop, which joins the Greenline at the super steep Takayama temple climb. On the way there I met a Japanese cyclist on a recumbent bike whom I had met before on a ride to Tsuru toge with a friend.

We talked from a hopefully safe distance.

About 2 km after I joined the Greenline towards Kabasaka pass the road was block with a barrier, with ropes tied between the trees both sides as if to say "that goes for you cyclists too!" There were two damaged sections, one mostly repaired but yet to be resurfaced, the other as grim as ever.

At Kabasaka pass the descent towards Rt299 was also closed, so I headed towards Shiraishi pass and down to Tokigawa, where I came across some magnificent cherry trees in full bloom.

I returned via Ogose and Kawagoe, clearing some VelowViewer tiles near the Tobu-Tojo Line before I got home late at night. My Max Tile is at 20x20.

With this my April century is done. I'm now at 92 consecutive months. I hope to be able to continue through the Covid-19 epidemic, riding on my own and minimizing contact with other people while out there. I didn't eat at any restaurants and I minimised convenience store stops.

Three days later, the government declared a state of emergency in 7 of Japan's 47 prefecture, covering about half of the population of the country. They did not close all restaurants or all non-essential businesses. Hairdressers are open, as are izakaya (traditional pubs) until 20:00. The guy in charge is no health official but the Minister for Economic Revitalization, which probably explains a lot of the above.

I think awareness of the danger is still lagging in Japan. I suspect in many parts of Japan they think it's problem only in Tokyo while in Tokyo many people have not been paying attention to how quickly things went how bad in Italy, the US and elsewhere. People generally don't have any symptoms for the first five days after they get infected, while they are already infectious. A significant portion of cases has no significant symptoms for the 2-3 weeks that they are infectious. Tokyo alone now has more confirmed cases than the entire US had when #45 declared the Covid Emergency. Confirmed cases are still doubling every week here.

They say the Japanese emergency law does not give the government the power to prohibit people from going out. If we don't want to give the government a reason to change the law, we should do our best to stay safe and avoid new infections.

Bulette 04-15-20 10:18 AM

After procrastinating throughout March, I decided to go after the century early in April.The weather was to be a balmy 70° with a soft overcast. I packed a picnic of pastries alongside a comfortable supply of water in the trunk, and set out for what would be a brief picnic to divide the estimated 7 hours of saddle time. My goal was to finish without stopping at any stores -- circumstances of social distancing at least provide a unique opportunity to practice for longer solo touring promised in a more stable future.

Lockhart State Park appeared busier than usual, but not so much as to prevent distancing; still, after a quick bite, I was glad to leave the social pressures behind and returned to the safety of the lonely road.
Photo: Day-Use Areas at Lockhart State Park

Cycletography 05-01-20 06:18 AM

April centuries...

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