Monday, May 10, 2004

Weekend Fun II

I finally got around to doing a bike ride in Washington Park this past Saturday. It was a lot of fun, but a real workout. I think the heat is the worst part. It gets toasty back in the hills in the middle of the park, and some of them are steep too. Fortunately, it was pretty cloudy and windy that day.

The commute to and from the park takes more or less 45 minutes each way (at a commuting pace) and is around 17 miles in total. The loop I took through the park was around 18.5 miles and took an hour and 45 minutes. So I was riding for about 3:15 in all.

They are doing lots of work on the roads in the park right now, which is good, since some places are just about 4WD only. The really bad section is between Playa Funchi and Slac Bai. I was going down the hills just about as slowly as I was going up them. It was pretty much riding from exposed rock to exposed rock, with my butt hanging back off the saddle so as not to pitch over the front wheel. Needless to say, it was lots of fun, and probably more comfortable than it was for Richard and Nancy in the back seat of our rock hard suspensioned Samurai back in Jan. We were in 4WD low range crawling through those sections, and almost bucked Nancy right out of the car at one point. Fortunately Richard grabbed her and held on, like he needs an excuse to do that, ha-ha.

I'll probably ride the park more on Saturdays, until it gets just plain old too hot. The park opens at 8 am. and I got to Slac Bai around 9. Now I'm usually finishing up my long Saturday road bike rides by 9 am, to avoid the sun etc.

The trip back to the entrance took until 9:45, and then I had 45 more min. 'till I got home. I had two Camelbacks full of water with me and was glad to have them, despite the weight at the start.

It will be interesting to see how quickly one can do the basic park loop once all the roads are fixed up. As the weather heats up this month, I'll probably begin driving to the park entrance and riding the bike from there, so as to avoid the trek home in the hot sun. I'll probably bring a waterbottle full of water to spash on my head too. The bottle I had on the bike on Sat. had Gatorade and there was no way I was going to pour that on the old noggin.

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