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Old 09-13-20, 07:14 AM
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September has brought some cool weather to central Texas -- morning lows in the '70's with highs hovering around 85F this week. I left comfortably after sunrise, around 8:00 am, destined for the best of the Hill Country.

I rode steady through the morning, out past Wimberley where the hilliest back country roads lay. There, I hopped onto Mount Sharp Road, a popular segment for Austin-area cyclists -- for a few moments, I wasn't alone, and distanced waves offered a refreshing bit of sociability in these isolating times. As the road reached its peak, I turned west. Three strong riders soon passed me, then vanished over the next hilltop; I stuck to my much slower, but steady pace.

Out of the "mountains" of the hill country, I reconnected with more familiar routes, including the highway between Canyon City and Sattler, and the New Braunfels favorite: River Road along the Guadalupe River. The same river road seems to be a common feature of my centuries this year -- at noon time, the well-rooted trees offer nearly full shade along a ten-mile stretch, and the road's traffic is usually restrained to just about 20mph. I didn't see many cyclists though; most had probably already finished their rides in the morning hours.

I stopped at the convenience store just outside of Gruene; the salt accumulating on my kit suggested some type of Gatorade to accompany a fresh water fill. The rest of the way home would be flat and relatively easy compared to the morning's hills.

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