The idea for this ride just came to me while hanging out at the house. A quick Google search revealed that April 10th was the 100th day of the year so I figured why not? It started as 100 on the 100th, ride 100 miles on the 100th day of the year. Later I came up with “Century Day” which I like just a little bit more. I drew up a century route and, once my time off request was approved, I set about sharing the details on this hair brained idea.
Leading up to the day I was happy to see that the weather was going cooperate. The winds were going to be almost nothing, and the temperatures were going to be warmer. I was certainly looking forward to riding without all the extra winter gear and having to worry about storing it later.
I was also happy to see so many riders signing up to join along. Had maybe 10 riders from Strava, 10 from Adobo Velo, and a couple from Green Valley Cyclists all signed up with some overlap. I came up with a few different starting points in order to get as many people interested as possible. That wasn’t hard considering the route is a healthy loop of the valley.
Late the night before I received a text from Mark that he was going to ride and asked if I wanted to meet up at Anthem Hills Park. So I rolled out of the house about 45 minutes before the start to ride down. Met up with Mark with plenty of time to make it to Pebble Marketplace before the start.
Rolling into Pebble Marketplace was excited to see so many people ready to go. Mark and I were joined by Jon, Joy, and Richard, while Robert and Tom had left about 30 minutes earlier. We started right at 7 and and made a brief stop at Polluck and Pebble to meet Adrian; however, he had something come up and couldn’t make it. About an hour later we rolled up to Mountains Edge Park and picked up Henry and two new chaps Kevin and Liam. After a bathroom break and introductions we set off for the final starting point of Pedal & Pour. It took us only 20 minutes to get there, find there was no one waiting for us, and we’d just missed Robert by maybe 15 minutes.
The ride up through Summerlin went well enough. I hung back to make sure we didn’t lose anyone. I thought Kevin was falling behind, but after talking I discovered group riding was something new for him. He wasn’t falling behind, he was just maintaining a larger following distance than what I’m accustomed to in a group ride. Knowing that he was faster than I’d been giving him credit for, I upped the pace a little to try to catch the group who was out ahead of us.
Sadly a few lights had other plans and we wouldn’t see anyone until we crossed Charleston. The lead group made a stop at the Terrible’s on the corner. I asked Kevin if he needed a stop and he replied no, so as we rode by I waved and gave a ring of the bell.
After the climb to the top of Alta I was relieved to start the descent into downtown. Had a great trip all the way down. Got to chit chat some with Kevin at a couple lights as it was just the two of us. He really got a kick out of riding downtown and was just slack jawed all along 6th street. He was so excited about seeing a part of Vegas he’d never seen by bike. Cool stuff.
We made our way through the east side of town quickly enough and soon we stopped for our first break at the Terrible’s on Los Feliz and Lake Mead. I was pleasantly surprised to find Robert and Tom hanging out getting refueled too. I made quick introductions and we chit chatted a bit before the two of them set off for Lake Mead. We’d agreed to meet up at the guard shack. Kevin and I hung out and got our rest and refuel in while waiting for the rest of the group to roll up. Took longer than I thought it would, but then again I was told they hit all the red lights AND had a flat to boot.
With everyone rested and refueled we set off to conquer Lake Mead. The climb up sunrise was a little tougher than usual with the slight head wind, but the descent was a blast as always. A quick stop at the guard shack to check passes and we were rolling. I think everyone was doing pretty well until after the turn onto Lakeshore. Between that turn and the next guard shack the temperatures started to climb. This was the warmest ride of the year and many of us weren’t quite prepared.
At the guard shack I’d talked about stopping again at Railroad Pass, but we all agreed to stop at the Terrible’s half way up the Boulder City climb instead. It was for the best as we had a few who were cramping and I think we were all ready for a nice sit down break. We pulled up and everyone got started on snacks and seats. With my snacks I pulled up to one of the tables in the shade and just sat back and looked out over the lake. It was absolutely beautiful. A nice gentle breeze combined with the shade made it really nice. Definitely a highlight of the ride for me.
Maybe 30 minutes later we were ready to roll out. Before we left I went into the restroom, soaked my Halo skull cap and sun sleeves, and threw some water on my base layer to boot. The climb up the second half to Boulder City wasn’t too terrible. Definitely tired legs, but not falling apart. After cresting Industrial, I waited for the last of the group and once we were lined up we started cruising over to the UPRR trail.
From there on back to Pebble Marketplace things went well. Had to make a quick stop for a ride having awful cramps, but they were able to get back on the bike and push through. Also had more riders cramping climbing out of Cornerstone Park. At this point I was really surprised to see so many having problems. Thankfully we all made it back to Pebble Marketplace in one piece.
At this point I was already my century mark, and we had a few riders who were still riding back over to Mountains Edge. I knew I wanted more miles so I said I’d ride some of the way over with Henry, Kevin, and Liam. Even Joy decided to ride along at least until Las Vegas Blvd and Cactus.
The route originally called for going all the way to Starr, but at this point everyone was just ready to be done so we took Cactus instead. While Joy, Kevin, Liam, and I were discussing the route, Henry was fine with Cactus and rolled out solo. I’m not a huge fan of Cactus between Las Vegas Blvd and Decatur. That area is getting busier and busier and I don’t like sending people down that road as a recommendation. In this case everyone felt ok with it so that is the way we went. We said goodbye to Joy and rolled on.
During this last leg Kevin and I got to yammering again. Had a really great conversation with the guy and I really hope he come out again. I think he and Caleb would get along great having both come from a power lifting background. Before long we crested the Cactus bridge over the railroad and after verifying they were comfortable rolling home themselves I made a left onto Rainbow to start my return home.
I made my through Southern Highlands without issue and set my sights for the Green Valley Grocery at the corner of Las Vegas Blvd and Volunteer. When I stopped I grabbed some Gatorade and snacked on the last of my gels. I pulled up some sidewalk along the east side of the building to enjoy the shade and enjoy a nice 20 minute break.
I thought about just heading straight home but I felt like I still had something left in my legs so instead I rolled out on Las Vegas Blvd heading for Via Inspirada. After making my turn onto Via Inspirada, I was still feeling pretty good. I started going back and forth about the idea of doing the water tower and Sloan climbs. As I came up to the water tower climb I figured why not I had what felt like a tail wind to push me up and the wind wouldn’t matter for much on the descent so I went for it. Both climbs went well although they were much slower than I’ve done in the past.
Back on to Democracy I set my sights for home. On the short climb to Anthem Highlands I thought about riding to the “top” where the path ends. About half way up Democracy I changed my mind because I got a HUGE cramp in my right hamstring. Honestly this was the worst timing of a cramp. I’ve had minor cramps on the bike before but nothing quite like this. There wasn’t much to do other than push through it. Thankfully after a couple pedal strokes it loosened back up and I was able to finish up.
Absolutely gorgeous day for a ride. Was nice to leave the house in only bibs and jersey while leaving all the cool weather gear behind. Got to meet some amazing new people and enjoy their company. Had a relaxing break overlooking the beautiful desert and Lake Mead. Overall just an awesome day.
0.46 new miles — From Wandrer.earth
Clear-Sunny, 60°F-90°F, Feels like 61°F-93°F, Humidity 32%-8%, Wind SW 2mph-NE 3mph – by Klimat.app
— myWindsock Report —
Weather Impact: -0.8%
Headwind: 53% @ 0.2-17.7mph
Longest Headwind: 01h 22m 33s
Air Speed: 17.5mph
Precip: 0% @ 0 Inch/hr
— END —
Max elevation: 3508 ft
Min elevation: 1316 ft
Total climbing: 7474 ft
Total descent: -7367 ft
Average speed: 19.86 mi/h
Average cadence: 80 RPM
Average heart rate: 153 BPM
Average temperature: 86.00 °F
Total time: 11:09:55