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2022 Randonnees

Old 11-08-21, 09:49 PM
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atwl77
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2022 Randonnees

I notice no one has started the 2022 thread yet, so I'll get this one started. Let's talk about the new 2022 season, our plans, ride reports and other relevant stuff here.
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Old 11-08-21, 10:00 PM
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So my Audax club has published their full year calendar and they're assuming things are going to go back to normal with tighter procedures moving forward - stuff like only allowing fully-vaccinated participants, proper social distancing, and so on. Checkpoints where we stamp our brevet cards at a physical booth or stall is also coming back, though not at every controle and in some areas, they'll still continue using the government's mobile tracking app for check-ins, so carrying a smartphone is going to be a requirement for practically all rides.

Interestingly, they're organizing another Super Randonnee in February. I don't know what the route's going to be like yet, but from my experience last year, it's going to be another blisteringly hot ride. I'll probably be signing up again since I'm a glutton for the punishment!

LRM1300 which has been delayed since forever, is finally taking place in March again. A recce team had just completed the route last week, in heavy rain due to the current monsoon season, so hopefully things will go smoothly this time around.

But those special events aside, I think the most important ride I mustn't miss this season will be the 1000k scheduled for September, as this will probably be the one that counts for pre-registration for Paris Brest Paris the following year. As part of preparation, I've changed my aerobars setup to a shorter ITU draft legal setup - the Profile Design Sonic 45ar - hoping that I can get comfortable with this setup before the season is over. Right now still having some adjustment/fit issues which I hope to get dialed down for an upcoming 300k on the 20th this month.

On a final note, I did not get Super Randonneur for 2021 but assuming the country opens up and goes back to a somewhat normal-ish status, I'll be gunning for SR this season.
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Old 11-08-21, 11:19 PM
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I need a 1000k to finish off the ACP Randonneur 10000, so that's on my list. Probably something close to home to save vacation days. 1000k might just be my favorite rando distance.

For my 2022 SR series, I'd like to mix it up with some rides down by Eugene, some up in Seattle.

I'll keep my R12 going. My old fave perm up to Ripplebrook has been closed due to the wildfires; hopefully they'll get the road opened back up. I'm sure it won't be the same. Then there's a perm around Lake Tahoe that I'd love to do, and pick up two more states in the process. And a new perm out of Portland that was just published.

Then there's LEL. I think I have a guaranteed registration slot. Vacation days though.
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Old 11-09-21, 12:49 AM
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My plan for 2022 is simply to get out and start doing brevets again! My wife and I have a toddler, so long rides of any kind were out this year.

I'm a fairly social rider, so I've been trying to rope a friend or two into doing some 200k's, maybe a 110k populaire to start. The bike is lighter and more dialed-in than ever, but the rider is quite the opposite at the moment.

With an eye toward doing PBP again, I've already talked the wife and sister into another French vacation in 2023.
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Old 11-09-21, 11:25 AM
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1200k signup usually happens early in the year and I have no idea at this time if I'm going to be in shape to do one in 2022. So I'll probably get on some waiting lists
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Old 11-10-21, 08:10 AM
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I signed up for my first 2022 season ride about a week ago, it's a 300 km ride the weekend after next (since the season starts in November). Until October I hadn't done any regular brevets in 2021 except for a Fleche in April, but then did two 200 km events last month.

I know many of the local randonneurs have lost their fitness due to so many cancelled events. Because I also do my regular "Century a Month" challenge (111 months and counting), it hasn't had too much impact on me. Yeah, the speed has been slower on my centuries than on Rando events, but I'm still used to the distances and I think that's the main thing.

I expect to go back on the usual schedule from January: Some 200s in January or March, a Fleche in April, then a 300 and 400 in April / May. I have not yet managed to complete a 600 under the time limit and thus make SR. It's most likely going to stay that way, unless I come across a very compelling 600 km event that even I could do in 40 hours.

The 300 should be interesting. It's going to be 300 km along the Pacific coast here in Japan, with almost the first half of it at night, along a coastal road that I have driven by car but never completely cycled.

It's getting colder, particularly at night, but last weekend I did a ride in a rural area where I rode over a mountain pass after sunset two nights in a row and think I'll be prepared.

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Old 11-10-21, 10:16 AM
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Fingers crossed for a normal season -- it'll officially be my third year as RBA for New England, but the first possibly-normal one. I'm just trying to figure out how to balance organizing and actually riding. (Yes, prerides are allowed, but I don't have infinite time. I might actually take some vacation days and do mid-week prerides, even if that means fighting traffic for some routes.)

Not sure if I'm going to try anything over 600k in 2022 -- I'm not targeting a rematch with PBP in 2023, I'd rather do a smaller 1200k first, and before *that* I want to focus on getting faster and stronger on hills, because I'm not great at handling sleep deprivation and being too close to the cutoffs to handle anything small going wrong is not how I want to do longer rides. If the season goes REALLY well I might look at one of the fall 1000ks, but I'm more likely to try to do an additional 600k.
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Old 11-17-21, 05:42 AM
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Mine are more dreams/aspirations than real plans but I would like to do New York Montreal New York, in addition to a full series. My plan to do The Race Across the Netherlands got scuttled with a crash 2 months ago leaving me with lots of broken bones. They just found out that my scapula was also broken and I might need shoulder surgery on top of the surgery already done to fix the compound humerus fracture and elbow, I have $20,800 of titanium in elbow....imagine the bikes that would have bought. LOL. At this point, it is hard to imagine riding 1200k but I also know the body is amazing in its ability to heal and the mind has the ability to forget.....Rando_nesia anyone? I guess if I put the goal of a 1000k or more on paper, it will motivate me. Oh, I also want to get off the recumbent and onto an upright. A Nitto moustache bar seems to be pretty good so far as an interim step.

This is my babystep back to uprights bike.

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Old 11-20-21, 11:00 PM
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I rode my November 200k today - Perm 2521 Portland-Aumsville-Portland - solo as usual. It's become my go-to perm, replacing the ride up to Ripplebrook which is sadly still unavailable due to wildfire damage. I've gotten a little fat and out of shape, so I squeaked in just under 10 hours. Forecast called for no rain, high about 51, mostly sunny. It was misting a bit at the start, which had me a little worried because I left my heavy rain jacket at home. No worries, that cleared up pretty quickly and it turned into a sunny day. The start is about 11 miles from my house; I grabbed a coffee and pastry there and headed south. PAP is an out-and-back that runs pretty much south with just a few east/west jogs. For clothing I had a wool Oregon Randonneurs jersey, SIR windbreaker, and PBP vest up top, shorts and leg warms down below, with wool socks and shoe covers. The ride starts with a fast two-step downhill on 45th street that's there waiting for you as a sharp two-stage climb at the finish. I stripped the windbreaker as soon as the sun came out, and stowed that for the rest of the ride. The ride is urban and surburban for the first 15 miles or so, mostly on bike lanes. Aside from the occasional trash can in the bike lane (Grrrr) and leaf and twig buildup, that was pretty uneventful. Leaving Oregon City southbound is a long curvy downhill - a climb I find unpleasant in the dark on the return. The bike lanes end, but traffic is light as the road becomes rural. The first control is a convenience store at 25 miles, where I just snapped a pic and ate some of my pocket food. The next section is quiet roads through orchards; very pleasant. The view opens up as the terrain flattens, and today a snow covered Mt Hood was visible. Southbound, Mt Hood and smaller peaks and foothills are on the left, flat on the right. The ride skirts the edge of Canby, goes through Mt Angel, on to the control in the tiny town of Monitor at 40 miles. I'd heard there was a store newly open in Monitor, so I'd planned to eat there. No luck with that, so on to Aumsville. Roads are pretty straight and mostly flat; there were a few miles of unusual traffic; signs indicated my route was the detour route for a closed road. Somewhere along the way it occurred to me I was rolling along really well, which could only mean one thing: tailwind. Dang, not what you want on the out leg of an out-and-back. Aumsville is pretty sparse with amenities; I rolled my bike around the mini market, picking up some water, coffee, and a couple burritos, and ate those outside. Northbound I found the headwind was there, but not as bad as feared. I was chilly the first few miles, but eventually warmed up with the effort. My decision to not layer up would come back on me later. In the town of Mt Angel, mile 83, I stopped at some food trucks and had an excellent Russian hand pie. From Canby, I decided to try an alternate route to Oregon City so I wouldn't be climbing that hill in the dark. A short bit on 99E, with wide shoulder, took me to S End Rd, which turned out to be not the best choice. Indeed I avoided climbing in the dark, but End Rd had far more traffic, no shoulder, and some sharp climbs that had me crawling. I won't use that route again. Darkness fell as I came into the suburbs, and the temperature dropped. Now would have been the right time to don my windbreaker and even roll down my rainlegs. Alas I just pushed on. Bike lanes, rolling hills, and the final climb up 45th street to the finish. Riding home in the dark on the Springwater trail, I felt my blood sugar crash and power output also crash. Fortunately, a small convenience store just off the Springwater gave me the opportunity to buy a coke and Twinkie. When I finally got home, I realized how cold I'd gotten; I had the shakes, and it took a warm shower and a bowl of chili to warm me up.
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Old 11-21-21, 08:57 AM
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I completed a 300k over the weekend. The original route was supposed to feature a steep hill near the halfway mark but a recent landslide forced the organizers to change the route to a tamer, flat-ish route instead.


Riding relatively "light" for this 300k - tools and tubes in the small saddle bag, spare tire hanging underneath, snacks and USB power bank in top tube bag, rain jacket hanging under the top tube.


It had rained throughout the night so at the start of the ride, the roads were wet and the air was cool. I was fortunate to latch on to a fast group and got a nice, long tow to the first checkpoint at the 55km mark. Afterwards, that same group stopped for breakfast so I rode on with a friend along a very lumpy countryside course to the second checkpoint at the 105km mark. This checkpoint appears to be a tourist attraction of sorts; I wanted to make this a quick breakfast stop but a puncture turned it into a much longer stay.

I couldn't find the source of the puncture, but there was a large cut which had gone through my tire so I'm assuming whatever caused it was lodged in there tight, and then decided to dislodge itself and deflate the tire during my stop. I patched the tire with an inner tube patch, and then discovered that I had brought the wrong tubes - the presta valve was too short! Not sure what happened there, I can only assume I mixed up the wrong set of tubes as these were meant for my other bike. Fortunately one of the three tubes I was carrying had the right 80mm valve but that meant if I get another puncture, I would be screwed.


I feel like it's just mocking me, at this point


Therefore it was a good thing that the route went through a major town center next, so I took the opportunity to find and stop at a bike shop to buy the proper tubes. Gave the owner my other incompatible tubes to save space, and for that he gave me a discount on the new tubes that I bought.

By the time I got to the next checkpoint at 173km, the weather had changed from cool overcast morning to hot sun with not much cloud cover. It was a slow slog to the next checkpoint at 231km where in between, I wasted time on two stops for cold refreshments to try and deal with the heat. At this point I also started getting stomach problems - not being able to take solid foods and feeling bloated. Nothing unusual, but no longer accustomed to it after not doing any long rides since the last lockdown was lifted.


Coconut milk shake


There was a bit of rain afterwards, and then after the sun began to set and temperatures went down to more comfortable levels, I felt my strength return. There was one more checkpoint to stop at, at the 273km mark before the final push to the finish. By this time it had gotten dark and I was riding on some pretty ****** roads which included a short section of unpaved gravel. It's a good thing I had a bright and powerful light with me, as it was also drizzling along the way and the glare from oncoming vehicles reduced visibility significantly.

Recorded an elapsed time of 16:13 - not my best of results, but it's obvious I've gotten a bit out of shape since the last lockdown occurred and I haven't done any long rides afterwards.




Here's the local club's medal for this season's ride. Pretty nice piece of metal, but I think I prefer the official version better.

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Old 12-19-21, 11:13 PM
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Completed what has to be the most insane 400k I have ever ridden over a weekend of continuous rain. Even without the rain, the ride itself was already a relatively challenging route with three climbs early into the ride before a relatively flat middle section, ending off with some rolling hills at the end.



The ride was originally slated to start at 6:00am but I missed the announcement where they moved the starting time back by an hour. So I arrived at an almost empty starting point with just me, another rider, and the organizers there to greet me.

First climb was a relatively short but steep hill under very light drizzle, but the roads were still quite wet as it had been raining continuously since yesterday. Good thing I brought along a detachable fender, the Topeak Defender RC11, or else my back would have become a dirty mess very quickly.

By the time I got to the bottom of that first hill, it started raining heavily and it continued to rain until I reached the next climb, where it lightened and became a drizzle throughout the climb. The first checkpoint was at the peak of this hill where I started catching up with some of the riders. Then it started raining heavily again on the descent.

Once I reached the next town I stopped at a nearby petrol station for my first meal - nothing special, just instant noodles and a pack of salted peanuts. When I left it was still raining, and I even came across a felled tree that blocked half the road on the way to the next climb. The third climb was the tallest hill, with the second checkpoint awaiting at the top. It continued to rain on the descent, and the whole time my hands were literally white and wrinkled from the cold, which made it harder to brake properly. Even had to dodge a couple of felled tree branches and other nasty debris caused by the rain.

Stopped at the next town for a proper meal this time. It's more of a very late lunch, but I had rice with fried chicken which was a very, very nice turn of events because usually on long rides like this, I'd be having stomach problems by now. I guess that's one of the few silver linings of continuous rain in cold weather.



Next checkpoint was a simple stop-and-go at a petrol station. I didn't drink as much water as I usually do - I guess it's the cold weather - so I didn't see any reason to make it a long stop. Quickly moved on, stopped for dinner along the route, then back to riding in the night until the fourth checkpoint. Rain started getting heavier again from that point until the fifth checkpoint, so even though it was a long and flat route but visibility was terrible in the rain so I had to take it safe and slow. I even had my backup light out, so two lights illuminating the way but that didn't help much.

Fifth and final checkpoint was a McDonalds. I arrived at around 1:30am in the morning and it was still raining rather heavily at the time. Although I wanted to carry on immediately after that, but I was sleepy and cold, and I wasn't keen on the prospect of going out in the cold, heavy rain so I stayed behind and took a nap instead. More riders came in, all complaining about the cold, and we were holed up here until 3:30am, in which we had no choice and really had to move on if we wanted to be able to safely meet the cut-off time for the event. Fortunately the rain had let up a little bit, but it was still cold - not from the actual temperature, but more because we were drenched and it was windy.

Moving on, visibility was still terrible and I came across a group who had to stop for help because one of their riders broke their shoulder(blade?) after hitting pothole. I myself hit a couple of potholes on the way, but fortunately nothing too nasty or serious. I was lucky I did not even get any pinch flats during the ride to the finish.

I completed the ride in 25h 53m of elapsed time, completely wet, cold and dirty. Such an insane, trying experience. I only found out just how nasty this monsoon rain had been afterwards, as it wreaked havoc all over the country during the ride and causing flooding and property damage in many states. So in a ways I suppose I can consider myself lucky that I myself didn't run into any major flooded or blocked roads, or any other dangerous incidents throughout the ride.


Last edited by atwl77; 12-20-21 at 01:06 AM.
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Old 01-10-22, 11:36 PM
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January 200k, check. Darn good weather on Saturday for a January PNW Brevet. Just a bit of mist at the start, temps from mid to upper 30's if not higher, sunshine after 10am, and negligible wind. Out of an abundance of caution I carried a whole crapton of extra wool and gloves. My group ended up with about 10k of bonus miles, tacked on right at the finish, by optimistically checking to see if the flooded road really was flooded. It was.

Today I sent my money off to the UK for LEL 2021 2022. TIme to up my wattage and drop some poundage.
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Old 01-17-22, 02:16 AM
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Every January is my audax club's annual Pink Ride, a special BRM200 that's usually designed to be newbie-friendly, and ladies get to register for free. However, the route has been becoming a bit less friendly to newcomers of late, with this year featuring a rather lumpy mid section after a relatively flat start but at least it ends with a flat finish also.

Pink Rides typically attract huge crowds and this year was no different. Almost could not find any parking spots available near the starting point, but fortunately I have a small car so I managed to find a little corner that no one wanted to try and fit their car into.

The ride officially starts at 5:00am but the organizer allowed a staggered start to avoid crowds. I noticed some leaving as early as 4:45am but since I had arrived late, I hung back and waited for most of the group to leave, before starting at 5:39am.

The beginning was relatively cool and pleasant with my Garmin Edge 1030 displaying temperatures below 20C but it was a false hope for things to come. Once the sun had risen temperatures went up quickly, up to blistering hot levels. I know the Garmin does not record the same temperatures as reported by weather stations, but rather measures the heat radiated around it, but still it hit the highest point at 41C which was not at all pleasant. The hilly sections, in particular, did not have much cover such as trees to provide any shelter from the heat.

The last 40km presented an additional challenge - relatively strong headwinds coming from the sea. And then with just a little less than 10km from the finish, both calf muscles decided to cramp. I was approaching a red light, unclipped my left leg and I guess the action of unclipping triggered that painful, familiar feeling. I quickly leaned towards the traffic island intending to lay the bike flat and unclip my right leg at the same time, and my right calf decided to go all stiff and painful on me too. Spent a good (10-20? minutes - I wasn't keeping track) just sitting there under the hot sun, stretching and massaging my muscles until I felt like I could get going again.

I completed the remaining distance at low gears, at a slow and steady pace. Finished at 3:00pm, still a pretty decent time all things considered, but could have been better if the situation had been more favourable.

Another issue I've been having are shoe issues. This is my second ride with a new pair of shoes - the Shimano TR-501 - which has been a little bit tight up front, so my two big toes have been suffering for a bit during the ride. The shoes are a replacement for my beat-up Shimano TR5, which is just an older model, so I wasn't expecting the fit to differ that much. Oh well, lesson learnt.

Anyways, with 200, 300 and 400 out of the way, I'm just left with a 600k to complete my SR series this year, and then the 1000k later on for PBP.
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Old 02-05-22, 11:03 PM
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For today's Oregon Randonneurs' Hillsboro Dallas 200k, I mounted a micro camera on my handlebars and set it to take a still every 60 seconds. It took 95 photos before the battery died, about 60 of which were close butt shots of my riding partners. Proof of how much time I spent drafting.

Weather was great for February; 45 at the start, overcast most of the day but the sun popped out a few times. We had a slight tailwind out the southbound leg of this out-and-back, and a headwind back.

Ride time was 9:01 with about an hour of stop time.

My rear shifter was a little balky, probably needs to be cleaned and lubed.
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Old 02-08-22, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
For today's Oregon Randonneurs' Hillsboro Dallas 200k, I mounted a micro camera on my handlebars and set it to take a still every 60 seconds. It took 95 photos before the battery died, about 60 of which were close butt shots of my riding partners. Proof of how much time I spent drafting.
Does it have a function to stay off, but turn on and take a photo similar to the way many action cameras work? If yes, I think you'd get a lot more mileage taking pictures this way - hit the button when something interesting comes up, rather than capture a stream of pictures all the way.
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Old 02-08-22, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
Does it have a function to stay off, but turn on and take a photo similar to the way many action cameras work? If yes, I think you'd get a lot more mileage taking pictures this way - hit the button when something interesting comes up, rather than capture a stream of pictures all the way.
No it's a super cheap 808 spy camera. Here are a few that were not butt shots. It was overcast all day, so lighting was not great.



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Old 02-13-22, 04:19 AM
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Yesterday, I did my first 200k on an upright in 6 years. Weather was pleasant but very windy. With a very upright position and a headwind for the last 60 miles and arms and hands hurting, I was missing my bent. But, I made my modest goal of finishing in daylight. Am I going down a slippery slope.....well, I finished.


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Old 02-18-22, 10:15 PM
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Back to randonneesfor the first time in 12 years. Off to a rough start with some bad weather and getting sick both months this new year. Just looking to pick up where i left off (wishful thinking being 12 years older and an 80 lb sack of potatoes heavier!), but it's fun to try. Looking to dupe, I mean introduce, a friend to the wonderful world of distance riding.
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Old 03-06-22, 01:25 AM
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Oregon Randonneurs Grab Bag 300k in the books. After a week of rain, the forecast was for 0% chance of rain, 34F at the start, high 58, mostly cloudy, and light winds. Since it's the PNW, and March, I packed my rain jacket and wore my rain legs anyway. Both can double for additional warmth anyway. I wore my new merino wool baselayer, mid-weight wool OR jersey, SIR windbreaker, full-length tights, wool socks and and shoe covers, and cycling shorts. I wore warm gloves, and carried my wool glove liners. The only extra clothing I carried was the rain jacket, and another pair of socks. The ride was 3 loops, returning to the start town at 100k and 200k. I had more clothes in the car, but we never ended up stopping there. The day turned out sunnier than forecast, so I ended up stowing the jacket and switching to glove liners. My riding buddy had put together an aggressive (for me) ride plan with 5 stops, with one long stop at Chipotle's at around 145 miles. The first 45 mile segment was pretty flat with rolling hills. We stayed with the lead group of about a dozen riders this whole segment, getting to McD's in Sherwood just on schedule. Everyone else went on, which was fun with us. The group pace was a bit erratic, not really to our liking.

Our ride plan had arrive/depart times for every stop. We left McDs on time, and from there the climbing started pretty quickly. From 46-55 miles we climbed from 200 feet to 1200 feet. This was the only sizeable climb of the route; the rest was flat or rolling. From the peak we bombed back down to the start town (Newberg), passing straight through and continuing to our 2nd stop, a quick grab and go at mile 70. Lafayette. Somewhere around here we picked up a couple SIR guys who'd split from the lead group. The four of us rode together the next few hours, though I would drop off the back on the rolling climbs.

Our next segment was 45 miles again, for a 20 minute stop at the small market in Dayton. Per plan, we ordered our Chipotle's burrito's from Dayton, scheduled to be ready a bit before our planned 4:45 ETA. We left Dayton a few minutes late due to difficulties with the Chipotle's ordering system. I guess we'd been dropped by the SIR guys by now; truth be told, I was dropped and my buddy waited for me. So about the Chipotle's. After finally getting the order done, my bud calls his wife and tells her there are a couple burritos at their neighborhood Chipotle's, paid for, if she cared to grab them for dinner.. LOL.

Dayton to Chipotle's was flat and uneventful aside from a fender rattle that my bike developed. We never figured out the source; it was super annoying, so I'll have to get that sorted out. I haven't mentioned the drafting. So my bud's plan was, basically, I'd draft him to keep our schedule. I'd say 90% of my rando miles over the last 13 years have been solo, and I generally eschew drafting. I figured I'd hang on as long as I felt like it, then bail. Well I drafted shamelessly all day. I took a few pulls here and there, including one stretch when he wasn't feeling great. But it went pretty much went according to his plan.

Chipotle's was about a half-mile off-route, but well worth it. Nice stop, a chance to use a nice restroom, put our reflective gear on, and chill for a few minutes. Chipotle's to the last stop was about 30 uneventful and relatively flat low-traffic miles. Really pretty sunset, then miles of fading sunlight. A nice segment, aside from an increasingly unhappy butt. We arrived at Gervais about 10 minutes late and left the same. It was another grab-and-go, getting a gallon of water and a quick bite to eat outside.

The last segment was just 17 miles, totally dark now, and 14 of those on empty roads. Really nice riding. We stopped once for a bio break, and noticed the stars were spectacular. Then the last 3 miles. I'd pretty much been dreading that segment when I first saw this route. There's a 2 mile segment on a 55mph state highway, on a long bridge over the Willamette River, with a few pinch points where the narrow shoulder reduces to almost nothing. Plus it's a slight uphill. I've ridden this several times on 200k routes, and I hate it. One year I had flat here, and had to fix it on a 24" shoulder. Aside from the pinch points and narrow shoulder on the bridge, there's a bit where the one-lane widens to have a passing lane, and again the shoulder shrinks to almost nothing. Fortunately traffic was lighter than on the various 200k's I've done, so it was less stressful than I expected. Unfortunately, there are not many bridges over the Willamette. Once we hit the Newberg city limit I was done, but it was another mile or so to the car. We finished 6 minutes ahead of his plan, having made up time in that last 17 mile segment.

Already, memories of the painful butt are receding. Randonesia is real.

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Old 03-06-22, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
Oregon Randonneurs Grab Bag 300k in the books. After a week of rain, the forecast was for 0% chance of rain, 34F at the start, high 58, mostly cloudy, and light winds. Since it's the PNW, and March, I packed my rain jacket and wore my rain legs anyway. Both can double for additional warmth anyway. I wore my new merino wool baselayer, mid-weight wool OR jersey, SIR windbreaker, full-length tights, wool socks and and shoe covers, and cycling shorts. I wore warm gloves, and carried my wool glove liners. The only extra clothing I carried was the rain jacket, and another pair of socks. The ride was 3 loops, returning to the start town at 100k and 200k. I had more clothes in the car, but we never ended up stopping there. The day turned out sunnier than forecast, so I ended up stowing the jacket and switching to glove liners. My riding buddy had put together an aggressive (for me) ride plan with 5 stops, with one long stop at Chipotle's at around 145 miles. The first 45 mile segment was pretty flat with rolling hills. We stayed with the lead group of about a dozen riders this whole segment, getting to McD's in Sherwood just on schedule. Everyone else went on, which was fun with us. The group pace was a bit erratic, not really to our liking.

Our ride plan had arrive/depart times for every stop. We left McDs on time, and from there the climbing started pretty quickly. From 46-55 miles we climbed from 200 feet to 1200 feet. This was the only sizeable climb of the route; the rest was flat or rolling. From the peak we bombed back down to the start town (Newberg), passing straight through and continuing to our 2nd stop, a quick grab and go at mile 70. Lafayette. Somewhere around here we picked up a couple SIR guys who'd split from the lead group. The four of us rode together the next few hours, though I would drop off the back on the rolling climbs.

Our next segment was 45 miles again, for a 20 minute stop at the small market in Dayton. Per plan, we ordered our Chipotle's burrito's from Dayton, scheduled to be ready a bit before our planned 4:45 ETA. We left Dayton a few minutes late due to difficulties with the Chipotle's ordering system. I guess we'd been dropped by the SIR guys by now; truth be told, I was dropped and my buddy waited for me. So about the Chipotle's. After finally getting the order done, my bud calls his wife and tells her there are a couple burritos at their neighborhood Chipotle's, paid for, if she cared to grab them for dinner.. LOL.

Dayton to Chipotle's was flat and uneventful aside from a fender rattle that my bike developed. We never figured out the source; it was super annoying, so I'll have to get that sorted out. I haven't mentioned the drafting. So my bud's plan was, basically, I'd draft him to keep our schedule. I'd say 90% of my rando miles over the last 13 years have been solo, and I generally eschew drafting. I figured I'd hang on as long as I felt like it, then bail. Well I drafted shamelessly all day. I took a few pulls here and there, including one stretch when he wasn't feeling great. But it went pretty much went according to his plan.

Chipotle's was about a half-mile off-route, but well worth it. Nice stop, a chance to use a nice restroom, put our reflective gear on, and chill for a few minutes. Chipotle's to the last stop was about 30 uneventful and relatively flat low-traffic miles. Really pretty sunset, then miles of fading sunlight. A nice segment, aside from an increasingly unhappy butt. We arrived at Gervais about 10 minutes late and left the same. It was another grab-and-go, getting a gallon of water and a quick bite to eat outside.

The last segment was just 17 miles, totally dark now, and 14 of those on empty roads. Really nice riding. We stopped once for a bio break, and noticed the stars were spectacular. Then the last 3 miles. I'd pretty much been dreading that segment when I first saw this route. There's a 2 mile segment on a 55mph state highway, on a long bridge over the Willamette River, with a few pinch points where the narrow shoulder reduces to almost nothing. Plus it's a slight uphill. I've ridden this several times on 200k routes, and I hate it. One year I had flat here, and had to fix it on a 24" shoulder. Aside from the pinch points and narrow shoulder on the bridge, there's a bit where the one-lane widens to have a passing lane, and again the shoulder shrinks to almost nothing. Fortunately traffic was lighter than on the various 200k's I've done, so it was less stressful than I expected. Unfortunately, there are not many bridges over the Willamette. Once we hit the Newberg city limit I was done, but it was another mile or so to the car. We finished 6 minutes ahead of his plan, having made up time in that last 17 mile segment.

Already, memories of the painful butt are receding. Randonesia is real.
Update. The rattle was the seatstay bridge fender bolt. I'd replaced that recently, going from an L-bracket bolted horizontally through the bridge to a bolt going up vertically into the bridge. Looks much cleaner. The bolt had worked loose just enough to rattle on rough roads.
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Old 03-24-22, 11:36 AM
  #21  
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So the big event, LRM1300, came and I DNF'd.

Things were going fine at first, with a bit of a moderate climb shortly after the start, followed by some rolling countryside roads afterwards. I brought a bunch of energy gels and food with me on the bike, the plan being to minimize stopped time and just eat on the bike. Weather was fine in the morning, but started getting hot once the sun had risen. By the time I reached the first checkpoint at 127km, I noticed I could not eat much at all.

The route to the second checkpoint wasn't easy. Rolling roads under hot sun, ending with a significant 20km climb up Fraser's Hill, the checkpoint at the top at around 800m high. At the base of the hill I was already not feeling that great, running on an empty stomach. I stopped at a nearby shop to have a can of Coke and took a short nap. Woke up feeling better, so I thought I'd take a shot at the hill and see how I felt once I reached CP2.

Halfway up my stomach had enough and forced me to throw up. I had nothing to throw up, so it was mostly stomach fluid, I guess. At that point I decided I'm probably done, but I still had to get to the checkpoint, then decide what to do next.

The remaining 10km was a slow and frustrating slog, but I eventually reached the checkpoint and was done. Almost felt like throwing up again, but didn't. So just over 200km but already over 2100m of elevation gain... such a hilly route. It was also a strategic decision to end the ride because the second day would be an even tougher route, going up an even taller mountain with brutal rolling roads afterwards. Not a good prospect, considering how badly I fared at this point.

Three others also stopped here, so I shared a ride with them to get back home. Gave my wife and kids a surprise when I got home so early, lol.

In all, pretty disappointing that I haven't fared well in anything over 1000km. I think in the long run, I really need to sort out my stomach issues in hot weather, as this sort of problem isn't going to go away on its own. I'm pretty sure it's heat-related - the last BRM400 that I had ridden was done under heavy monsoon rain, practically no direct sunlight for the entire 26+ hours, just cold and wet all the way, and I was able to take complete meals. Both lunch and dinner. Full portion. But in other rides, as soon as the temperature goes up, I'm relying on liquids to keep me going. Ugh.

Anyways - this is the route. The first 600km is pretty tough all round... then smooth going afterwards until the last bit at the end.
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Old 03-24-22, 12:27 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
So the big event, LRM1300, came and I DNF'd.

Things were going fine at first, with a bit of a moderate climb shortly after the start, followed by some rolling countryside roads afterwards. I brought a bunch of energy gels and food with me on the bike, the plan being to minimize stopped time and just eat on the bike. Weather was fine in the morning, but started getting hot once the sun had risen. By the time I reached the first checkpoint at 127km, I noticed I could not eat much at all.

The route to the second checkpoint wasn't easy. Rolling roads under hot sun, ending with a significant 20km climb up Fraser's Hill, the checkpoint at the top at around 800m high. At the base of the hill I was already not feeling that great, running on an empty stomach. I stopped at a nearby shop to have a can of Coke and took a short nap. Woke up feeling better, so I thought I'd take a shot at the hill and see how I felt once I reached CP2.

Halfway up my stomach had enough and forced me to throw up. I had nothing to throw up, so it was mostly stomach fluid, I guess. At that point I decided I'm probably done, but I still had to get to the checkpoint, then decide what to do next.

The remaining 10km was a slow and frustrating slog, but I eventually reached the checkpoint and was done. Almost felt like throwing up again, but didn't. So just over 200km but already over 2100m of elevation gain... such a hilly route. It was also a strategic decision to end the ride because the second day would be an even tougher route, going up an even taller mountain with brutal rolling roads afterwards. Not a good prospect, considering how badly I fared at this point.

Three others also stopped here, so I shared a ride with them to get back home. Gave my wife and kids a surprise when I got home so early, lol.

In all, pretty disappointing that I haven't fared well in anything over 1000km. I think in the long run, I really need to sort out my stomach issues in hot weather, as this sort of problem isn't going to go away on its own. I'm pretty sure it's heat-related - the last BRM400 that I had ridden was done under heavy monsoon rain, practically no direct sunlight for the entire 26+ hours, just cold and wet all the way, and I was able to take complete meals. Both lunch and dinner. Full portion. But in other rides, as soon as the temperature goes up, I'm relying on liquids to keep me going. Ugh.

Anyways - this is the route. The first 600km is pretty tough all round... then smooth going afterwards until the last bit at the end.
High heat and high humidity are a difficult combination and food/fuel/water get tricky.

I did 55-60 mile ride around Penang on my Bike Friday in brutal heat humidity, starting at the Shangrala in Batu beach and then going counter clockwise around the island with a few side trips to the little beach towns, I thought I was dead by the time I got to Georgetown. The only three things that sort of work for me in that environment. 1. Be skinny 2) Keep the pace way down 3) Go really lean on food and heavier on water.
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Old 03-24-22, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
High heat and high humidity are a difficult combination and food/fuel/water get tricky.

I did 55-60 mile ride around Penang on my Bike Friday in brutal heat humidity, starting at the Shangrala in Batu beach and then going counter clockwise around the island with a few side trips to the little beach towns, I thought I was dead by the time I got to Georgetown. The only three things that sort of work for me in that environment. 1. Be skinny 2) Keep the pace way down 3) Go really lean on food and heavier on water.
My friends in Penang do the round-the-island ride often (heck, I think that's the only long distance route you can do on that island, either clockwise or anticlockwise). The heat can get pretty brutal around this time of the year, especially if you're caught out on the climb somewhere near the dam past 10am when it's starting to get real hot.
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Old 03-25-22, 06:43 AM
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
My friends in Penang do the round-the-island ride often (heck, I think that's the only long distance route you can do on that island, either clockwise or anticlockwise). The heat can get pretty brutal around this time of the year, especially if you're caught out on the climb somewhere near the dam past 10am when it's starting to get real hot.
I once rode cross the USA and it was 110-120F but very dry in the West. It wasn't bad other than the climbs. I just had to climb very slow because there is not much evaporation to cool you when climbing. When I got to Missouri or Misery as I like to call it, the temperatures were only in the low 100 range or even just high 90's but the humidity was off the charts. Not riding too hard in the heat of the day is one tactic that I learned and use to this day. For instance, let's say I have a 4 am start 400K on the East Coast of the USA in warmer months, I will ride harder until about 10 am and then really, really slow down until about 4 pm. If I am not riding very hard, most of the calories burned are fat. If it is very hot and humid, my body already has a hard job to dissipate heat. So, I mostly focus on hydration with just a little calories added in brutal conditions. Climbing and eating in the Malaysian hot/humid air is kind of a bad recipe. Try to experiment when to eat. I try to never eat before a big climb in hot weather to the extent that if a control is before the climb, I will carry the food and eat it at the top. Rather extreme. I have never puked but do get a lousy feeling, so, I prefer not to have a full belly starting a big climb. Don't know if any of that will help. GL

1) Be skinny
2) Keep the pace way down
3) Go really lean on food and heavier on water.
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Old 03-26-22, 12:10 AM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
I once rode cross the USA and it was 110-120F but very dry in the West. It wasn't bad other than the climbs. I just had to climb very slow because there is not much evaporation to cool you when climbing. When I got to Missouri or Misery as I like to call it, the temperatures were only in the low 100 range or even just high 90's but the humidity was off the charts. Not riding too hard in the heat of the day is one tactic that I learned and use to this day. For instance, let's say I have a 4 am start 400K on the East Coast of the USA in warmer months, I will ride harder until about 10 am and then really, really slow down until about 4 pm. If I am not riding very hard, most of the calories burned are fat. If it is very hot and humid, my body already has a hard job to dissipate heat. So, I mostly focus on hydration with just a little calories added in brutal conditions. Climbing and eating in the Malaysian hot/humid air is kind of a bad recipe. Try to experiment when to eat. I try to never eat before a big climb in hot weather to the extent that if a control is before the climb, I will carry the food and eat it at the top. Rather extreme. I have never puked but do get a lousy feeling, so, I prefer not to have a full belly starting a big climb. Don't know if any of that will help. GL

1) Be skinny
2) Keep the pace way down
3) Go really lean on food and heavier on water.
You make a good point about choosing when to eat. Thinking back, in previous rides I started at an earlier time (typically 4-5am), rode all the way to the first checkpoint (typically around 90km) and had breakfast there. That strategy did not work for this one because the ride starts at 6am, and the first checkpoint was at 127km, and it was a very hilly route. Put those three together and I have spent more time riding, and trying to eat much later than I was used to, when it's already gotten late and hot.

This is the first time I've puked, but have felt pretty lousy a lot of times before. I think the main difference is that there's a big climb involved this time; at other times I did not have to exert as much effort when already feeling lousy. This feeling usually persists on the first day, then partially goes away on the second day, and (for 1000k rides) generally fully goes away on the third day so I suppose I was gambling on that same pattern to happen here - but I guess the presence of a big climb changed it all.
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