Thursday, February 01, 2007

Weekend Warriors

This is the course profile of an upcoming group bike ride. See the last paragraph of this posting for the details.
The starting point is at Eden Park. The first bump on the graph at 2.25 miles is the start of Sabadeco.
The dip at 3.5 miles is at Oilslick Leap. The next peak, at 4.6 miles is at the top of 1000 steps. The dip at 5.9 miles is at Old Blue and the dip at 6.7 miles is at Karpata.
The peak at 7.8 miles is the top of the hill between Karpata and Rincon.
There is a dirt road from the top of this hill that dives down to the road between Dos Pos and Rincon, which is the dip in the curve at 8.5 miles. The hilltop (para mira) with a great scenic view of Rincon is the peak at 9 miles.
Rincon is the dip at 9.5 miles. The killer cement road that climbs from Rincon to the radio towers on the cliff overlooking that town is next. The top of that hill is the highest sport on the chart, at 10.4 miles.
We then will hang a right turn at the big silver water tank and dive downhill on a dirt road that takes us to the lower of the two dirt roads back to Sabadeco. The bottom of this sketchy hill is at 11.1 miles.
There is a small but steep hill at 11.4 miles, and then it is downhill all the way back to Eden Park. Yippie! Oh, and be careful, because the dirt road is crossed by a number of giant bike eating gullys and the whole route back to Eden Park is heading directly into the wind, ha-ha.
I must not be the only one who thinks that this time of the year is ideal for being out and about on Bonaire. There are interesting activities happening every weekend these days.

Last Saturday was the Annual Lora (parrot) count. During the wee hours of the morning, about 50 volunteers headed to 22 known nesting sites around the island to count the Loras as they woke up and greeted the new day. The wild Lora population seems to be stable at about 650 birds. By the time I arrived at Washington Park on my bike ride last Saturday morning, the count was finished, a great breakfast had been eaten and the volunteers were starting to return home. You can read more about the Lora count in this week's issue of The Bonaire Reporter, on the Bonaire Reporter website. (Its dated 02-02-07 if you are reading this at some later date) There is also an informative article about the Lora on page 10 of the Jan 19, 2007 issue. You'll have to subscribe to read the Reporter online, but I must say that I consider it $35 well spent, and I live here and have access to the free hard copy version of the Reporter.

This coming weekend, the dawn of Sunday, Feb. 4, will see swarms of people running, hiking and biking from Red Slave at the south end of Bonaire, all the way to Rincon, in an annual fund raiser for the Bonaire Special Olympics team. Church responsibilities, not to mention the 5am. start time, have prevented me from participating in this event so far. Well actually, last year, Bob Lassiter and I did drive to Rincon in "Big Red" after church to join the hardy hikers for a scrumptious lunch. The route for this event goes right past our house and it is fun to see the participants passing by as I eat breakfast, feed the dogs, and then bike to the IBCB (church) around 8 am. to set up the sound system.

Next Saturday, Feb. 10, will be an opportunity for cycling enthusiasts to get together for a great group ride, sponsored by Bonaire Wellness Connexions. Details can be found on the Bonaire Insider web site. As I mentioned in my blog, the December ride was a lot of fun. I just rode the planned route of the upcoming ride. It took me about an hour and 20 minutes to ride without stopping, but will probably be more of a two hour group adventure next Saturday, because there will be rest stops for munching fruit and re-hydrating along the way. At the top of this posting you will find a yellow chart showing elevation versus distance for the route of the Feb. 10 ride. My bike speedometer read 26.58 km at the finish, but he chart shows the distance in miles and the elevation in feet. It's not a long ride, but has a fair amount of climbing for a "flat" island.

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