While hanging out at Pedal & Pour after last weekend’s ride, Robert let me know that he was going to be out of town this weekend and asked that I host a ride. I lamented that I wasn’t sure what route we should use and I’ve been short on ideas lately. Thankfully Dave Burns overheard my dilemma and mentioned either riding to the speedway or out to Love’s. I asked Robert if he had route details and he told me to check in with Stan. After a quick back and forth conversation on Facebook Messenger, I had both routes in hand and set to planning.
I made a pair of route maps for Joy and I for the weekend. Mostly I wanted to actually come up with a solid plan for the day. Sometimes just wandering aimlessly in search of extra miles gets a little tiresome. This way I knew exactly how much we should end with. I picked her up at Via Firenze and Democracy versus where I usually meet her right outside her gate. This way we could continue west on Democracy and work our way out to Las Vegas Blvd near SpeedVegas. It worked out pretty well despite a small boo boo along Gallarate Dr. in a still developing community. For some reason my Garmin failed to notify me about a turn so we had to double back for a short stretch. It wasn’t really a big deal, more a minor annoyance.
It only took Joy and I an hour to reach Pebble Marketplace via LVB and Pebble. This put us at the start a little earlier than I had hoped, but as usual I’d rather be a little too early than late. It gave us a few minutes to hang out inside Starbucks to warm up, use the bathroom, and visit with the others and they rolled in. I was pretty impressed with the turnout. Overall I think we were close to 17 riders when we left Pebble Marketplace. This included a contingent of visiting Adobo Velo members, past and present, from SoCal, but doesn’t include the two “B Group” riders who had left 45 minutes earlier. So maybe closer to 20 all together?
I changed things up at the start and that of course caused a lot of confusion. Everyone is accustomed to riding east along Pebble and Wigwam to make our way to Gibson before going north. On Monday we’d done the same thing and with the construction and lane closures I didn’t feel that was a safe route anymore. During our pass through the area there was active construction in the right lane so we had no alternative than to take the only eastbound lane on Wigwam. Despite this we had numerous cars pass us in the center lane. Not only is this unsafe, but it also kicked up dirt, dust, and debris which we all took in the face. In addition, the road surface is just flat out garbage and not worth the hassle. I chose to take us down Green Valley Pkwy to Windmill as an alternative, and despite the initial confusion I think it was a much better option.
Jose got a flat as we made the right onto Wetlands Park Ln. Ferdie and Al swooped in to offer assistance and holy cow did they make short work of it. I think they had it fixed in less than 10 minutes. I was seriously impressed at their efficiency. I told them they need to give some F1 teams a call for a job.
Our first stop was at the Terrible’s on the NW corner of Hollywood and Lake Mead. By this time I had fallen behind to hang with a second group who had hit a few lights and fallen behind. We arrived to find everyone already digging into snacks and chit chatting after bathroom breaks. Our second group spent maybe 15 minutes relaxing while the first group had maybe 5 minutes more than that. It was a quick break and we were off for Love’s in short order.
Not too long after making the turn onto northbound Las Vegas Blvd Jose got a second flat. I rolled up and unpacked my extra tube and CO2 to get him up and running. While Ferdie, Al, and I were working on this one the group rolled on without us. This flat was fixed even faster and we were rolling again in maybe 5 minutes? It may have been longer because I rolled up to the flat party a little late.
The four of us rolled out and hung together, for the most part, all the way until Love’s. Jose and I both did our best to lead out Al and Ferdie as we battled what felt like a head wind. We eventually caught up to our visiting friends who’d stop around mile 25 or so. Their goal for the day was 50 miles in total, but once we told them we were maybe 6 miles from Love’s and the turn around spot they decided to join us.
Our new expanded group rolled together pretty well all the way until Love’s. I led the group out and we were rolling pretty good. We eventually caught Jack, the two Jennifers, and Moose before pulling into Love’s. I was certainly satisfied that we all pulled in relatively close together. I was also thrilled to get a nice break off my feet and some snacks in me. I was also glad to roll in and find the two Tonys hanging out enjoying their rest as the “B Group” boys.
After milling about Love’s for 20 minutes it was time to head back. Rolling out I was able to get up front with Dave, Joy and a few others as we started the gradual climb up to Apex. As we crested the summit I looked around behind us and saw there were only five of us. I thought we had the entire group in tow, but was sadly mistaken. I pulled up to Kant to wish him luck as he was peeling off from the group near the Speedway and let him know that I was stopping at the round-a-bout to wait for the rest of the group. As I sat waiting I watched a few riders, some in groups and others solo, go by when Jose last came through saying there were two riders back behind him. The first was almost right on his wheel, but the second was much much further back. Once he rolled up I pulled out.
Regrettably I can’t remember his name, but the two of us set off to try to catch up to the group. We were really flying along the descent to the Speedway. I seriously put my head down while trying to remain consistent to not drop him. We averaged about 30 MPH until the Speedway. It was at that point I could tell he was falling off. Before then I’d occasionally hear his freehub, but that was happening less and less. I dialed it back as we reached the flatter section of road and picked him back up. He asked me to try to keep it around 20 and we rolled on. We didn’t quite catch the group as I’d hoped, but we did catch them after they’d got caught at a red light at Craig. As I like to say, “Red lights, the great equalizer.” I would learn later that this rider had recently had hamstring surgery and was still recovering which explains why he was having problems with the climbs. I’d keep an eye on him, on and off, for the remainder of the ride back to Pebble Marketplace.
From there on back things went pretty well. We made one quick stop at the restrooms near the west entrance to Wetlands Park. I had planned on making a stop at a convenience store earlier, but with traffic and the need to make left turns it never materialized. Then again by this point I think most of the group was ready to be back at Pebble and done for the day.
Once we arrived back at Pebble Marketplace we ran into the two Tonys getting themselves packed up and ready to head home. Tony Pranger asked if anyone was interested in joining him at Lovelady and unfortunately I had to decline. Both Joy and I had more miles to tackle and needed to make a stop at Swanny’s along the way. So Joy and I rolled over to Starbucks for another quick bathroom break and short rest before rolling out.
We rode up Green Valley Pkwy to Swanny’s so I could pick up a pair of tubes and CO2 cartridges. I didn’t want to keep riding without anything to fix a flat should I get one. While I was there I had Zubi check out my right shifter because it was behaving oddly. It was as if the first couple millimeters of travel had zero tension on them. So the handle would kinda “flop” around, it was the oddest thing. He checked it and said that it for sure was something that would need some digging into. With that, I packed up my goods and Joy and I rolled out for home.
I had originally planned on us doing a Seven Hills loop and up through Fieldbrook; however, knowing I needed to get Shadow back to Swanny’s before they closed I asked to cut things short. We cut across from Seven Hills Dr to Sun City Anthem using a trail before continuing on. As we started up Anthem Highlands, Joy said she wanted to follow me up Democracy for some extra miles to take her over 110 for the day. Arriving at my place we said our goodbyes, she rolled off for home, and I went inside to change and take Shadow.
We were really lucky today with decent temperatures and no rain. Rain had been in the forecast for today and we got lucky putting in the miles before it arrived. I did catch some sprinkles after dropping off Shadow at Swanny’s. Yup, dropped off. When I went by Zubi took a look and, despite some preliminary attempts at fixing it, felt it best to hold onto Shadow to do some more digging to fix the shifter. Worst case scenario the shifter is replaced under warranty from Shimano. I’m hoping it doesn’t come to that and I get my boy back sooner rather than later. I’m already bummed at the idea of missing my Monday morning commute let alone any more than that. At least I have the gym to keep my body busy. Besides, wasn’t I complaining about lugging around a bunch of fatigue just yesterday?
New bike fund: $38.83 (+$0.06)
20.54 new miles — From Wandrer.earth
636 vehicles @ 5.9 per mile, 1.7 per minute, Speeds: 35.0 mph (avg), 68.1 mph (max) — by MyBikeTraffic.com
Give your activities the names they deserve. — by Bandok.com
Cloudy-Cloudy, 48°F-60°F, Feels like 49°F-63°F, Humidity 51%-36%, Wind WNW 2mph-NE 2mph — by Klimat.app
— myWindsock Report —
Weather Impact: 2.1%
Headwind: 36% @ 0.5-8.5mph
Longest Headwind: 46m 58s
Air Speed: 17.4mph
Precip: 0% @ 0 Inch/hr
— END —
Max elevation: 3132 ft
Min elevation: 1568 ft
Total climbing: 4246 ft
Total descent: -4175 ft
Average speed: 19.44 mi/h
Total time: 09:15:03