Greetings. So here's the lowdown. (I said "load.") If you'd like to do this ride, and really challenge yourself in the same way that Mason Storm challenged himself in "Hard To Kill," then listen up cuz' I'm fin'a drop a few truth bombs on you.
What: ROUTE Nearly 100 miles of hilly goodness, never more than 10 or 15 miles from the starting point.
Where: Starting at Lone Elk Coffee Please park in the lower area of the lot, per Ralph's request.
When: Sunday, Feb 28th at 9AM - clicking in at 9AM, so get there early and be ready to ride!
-Last year's ride took about 6 hours.
-This is a really fucking hard route. Seriously. That's why it took 6 hours to ride 83.5 miles last year.
-This is *not* a supported ride, so bring plenty of food and fluids, and cash/plastic to buy more when we stop at the few gas stations.
-I reserve the ability to cancel or alter the ride depending on weather - I'm not going out for a 6 hour ride below freezing or in the rain or snow. Might still ride, but won't be as ambitious. Jerks. Last year's weather was sunny and mid-to-high 30's, and I really hope we have that again!
-You might want to start limbering up your t'aint now.
-Unlike my underpants, this route isn't marked.
-I welcome random cursing and verbal bashing directed towards me at the base of any and all hills, as per the practice from last year.
The few, easy places to refuel on the route:
-the gas station at Allenton/44
-the gas station at Wild Horse Creek/Eatherton
-water @ Drew's house
-water @ Thrasher's house
-water fountains in Rockwoods Reservation next to Smokey the Bear, though they are probably off for the winter
Pace: NOT a hammerfest. Talking pace except on the hills, where you do whatever you have to do to get to the top. I want to ride in a nice cohesive group with friends and people I know (thus the idea of "organizing" a group ride) but I'd also like to throw out the idea the group break into smaller groups if people are waiting for more than 10 minutes at the top of each hill. So please print out a copy of the route or download the map-my-ride link onto your Garmin, and use that to guide you if you find yourself sans-group. I'll probably do this as well and bring some.
Here is the route, typed out. I made a couple of small changes over last year, notably the little out-and-back Dehardt Farms road, which will equalize your brain into a 1980's sitcom mush, and a little jaunt up Smith School Road - otherwise it is pretty much the same as last year:
-Start at Lone Wolf Coffee
-Head west on Clayton,
-Left on Thunderhead Canyon Dr.
-Left on Westglen Farms Dr.
-Right on "Village Plaza View Dr," toward the stripmall
-enter bike path opposite the parking lot
-left across black pedestrian bridge, crossing Hwy 100
-left after bridge
-right onto Old Manchester (across from the Jack in the Box)
-left onto Woods Rd. Descend and turn left up Bartizan, come back down, and continue down Woods.
-left onto bike path and ride south along Hwy 109.
-left up Old State for about .1 mile
-left onto Redtail Hawk Dr
-Then turn/veer left onto Johns Cabin Rd, which is a clockwise loop (Mitch's secret training loop) and will bring you back to Old State.
-Cross 109 at Old State, turn right up Alt Rd.
-Left on Forby.
-Right onN. Central Ave
-Cross over Hwy 44, turn right onto West Main St (in between train tracks.)
-left onto Wengler and start Allenton Loop, going CCW.
-Exit Allenton Loop to the left, go underneath Hwy 44, and climb Allenton Rd.
- right onto Scenic Loop Rd, going opposite direction.
-right, continuing on Allenton Rd.
-left onto Melrose
-right onto Hwy 100
-right onto Woodland Meadows Dr.
-right onto Old Manchester
-right onto Glencoe (through Rockwoods.)
-Go straight up Melrose
-Turn right (again) onto Hwy 100, cross over and turn left and continue on Melrose all the way until it descends to Hwy T.
-Left on T
-Left on Bassett
-Left onto Cremin's Green, out-and-back. Continue up Bassett.
-Left onto Old Manchester
-left onto Bouquet.
-Left onto Ossenfort, cross T, and continue on Ossenfort.
-Right turn onto Hardt Road (at the bottom of Ossenfort Hill)
-Left turn up Dehardt Farms Rd at stopsign - go to end and turn back around in cul-de-sac.
-right back onto Hardt Rd, returning to Ossenfort.
-right back onto Ossenfort
-Continue straight onto Wild Horse Creek
-turn left up Babler Forest as an out-and-back.
-Come back down, and turn right onto Wild Horse Creek, climbing to Rieger.
-Turn left onto Rieger
-Right on Pond.
-left on Smith School Rd.
-Left on BA.
-left into Babler State Park. Once in Babler, turn right onto John Cochran Dr (CCW loop), turn right up Theodore Wirth Drive, and left down Guy Park Dr (past the pool). Turn right back up John Cochran Dr, climb up the first hill, and turn left at the bottom of the other side (also John Cochran Dr (be careful on the gravel!) and duck under gate to exit Babler State Park.
-Immediately turn right up Wild Horse Creek Drive (Doberman.)
-Turn right onto Old Eatherton.
-Left onto Orville.
-Right up Shephard.
-Left onto bike path alongisde 109
-Left onto Clayton back to Lone Wolf Coffee.
*a mercy option to take Shephard to Streucker to Kehrs Mill back to Lone Wolf is in effect, thus shortening the ride by several miles.
*Please take note of where to exit Babler State Park - it is not well marked, and easy to miss. It is at the bottom of the second climb, when you will pass by it at first, and then loop back around to it. It is not very well paved, and you will have to go underneath a metal gate.
*UPDATE* the addition of going to DeHart Farms might be out because of bridge that is out, in which case we'll just continue down Ossenfort.
That should be it for important info. With any luck, Scott might actually get lucky with a man-boy-who-looks-like-chick, just hopefully not at the expense of the group's progress. At least there will be amazing food waiting afterwards.
-Casey F. Ryback, Regular Guy