Like lice on Caesars Head
This morning Chris, John, and I loaded up our bikes on top of Chris' truck and headed to Marietta for a short ride up to Caesars Head. From our starting point, it was 18 miles up to the park entrance.
Did I mention that this was my first trip on a bike along the route?
The ride along 288 was pretty easy. It was basically like any other Saturday morning ride. Marked Beech road was more of the same only the scenery was much better (except for the dead dear that some carrion birds were having for breakfast). Moody Bridge road was even better. I was feeling pretty good. The McDonald's steak biscuit was sitting just right.
Once we got on Pleasant Grove road, the ridge on which Caesars Head is located loomed ahead of us. I was going to climb that? Well, first we had to get on Hwy. 11 and keep our eyes open for speeding cars. I was thinking how great the road would be for riding if the traffic was light when it was time to turn onto Hwy. 8 to start the climb. Here we go...
The blue line shows the route for Slater-Marietta to Caesars Head route. Click here to expand the map. Once you have expanded the map, click on it to be able to view more detail.
The climb started out not to be so bad. It reminded up of some of the climbing on the Bakery Ride. We just kept going and stopped at Bald Head to allow John to catch his breath. I'm not sure, but I think he may have gone behind some bushes to puke - though it could have been something less severe. Turns out he was really hurting himself because his seat was adjusted wrong.
We found that out because as we started out again - maybe five miles from the top - he just stopped and said he just had to do something with the seat because his back was killing him. We pulled over once again to make the adjustments. About six riders passed us as we worked.
The next thing we came to was the 4 mile marker. At that point the climbing set in in earnest. I put it in the middle ring and just started trying to maintain a 8 to 10 mph average. Before long I caught one of the riders that had passed us. Now it was just me and road. John and Chris were still out of sight behind me.
"Okay, so this has to end at some point," I thought. Finally, there it was, a sign letting me know I only had to go 1000 more feet. I had pretty much made it. I had avoided the third ring of my triple until just here at the end. Now, I slipped back up before pulling into the park.
John and Chris soon followed. I was proud of John. He had been off the bike some and I was wondering if he would make it. He did just fine. Then it was time to turn around and retrace our route. Ahhh, wasn't that downhill great!
Stats: Distance = 36 miles, Time = 2:21 hours, Max. = 40 mph, Average = 15.3 mph. Unfortunately, my HRM got thrown off when I inadvertantly pushed a button. As I climbed, the max bpm I noticed was 184. Best I can tell, I averaged around 153 bpm.
Great fun! Can't wait to do it again. The only really annoying this is that my bottom bracket keeps creaking. It drives me nuts!