Saturday, September 5, 2009

1 week left!

Only 1 week left until my big week-long cycling tour. I will be posting info on my ride with daily updates and pictures. More info to come tomorrow...

Monday (Sept. 7, Labor Day) is my last big ride before I start tapering off my riding in preperation for the big day. I get to see my sister Marianne and hopefully my Uncle Trent and Aunt Robin, who I haven't seen in over 8 years. I was hoping Uncle Trent would come and ride the entire week with me but urgent family issues kept him busy elsewhere. He will not be riding but I hope to spend some quality time with them. Maybe I'll have time to visit the new Medford Temple located in Central Point.

I first heard of Cycle Oregon from a friend at work who was doing it. Last year CO 2008 rode in northeast Oregon, including Baker City, Enterprise, the Eagle Cap Wilderness, Hell's Canyon, and lots of simply gorgeous country. When I heard that CO 2009 would be starting in Medford (my old stomping grounds) I jumped at the chance to register. Good thing too because registration filled up in short order (2000 spots in 10 days?). I was reading the directions to the parking area and came upon a revelation. The directions included a lot of street names that I was quite familiar with and as I went through the directions in my head I said to myself, "no way, that sounds like they are directing me to my old Elementary School," which they were. I opened Bing Maps and verified it: the start/finish area was across the street from Jefferson Elementary, which I attended in 1984-6 in the 5th and 6th grades (Mrs. Leavens and Mr. Benney for you Lee-trivia buffs). The long-term parking area is the south field of the school. I haven't seen that school since we moved away back in '88.

I registered without really thinking about what my goals would be and what I would accomplish. Now that my Uncle isn't going with me I'll be essentially traveling by myself for 8 days. On the 7 day ride I'll be covering 437 miles and 28,202 feet of elevation gain. That averages out to 62.5 miles and 4028 feet per day. I know of no other friends, family, or even acquaintances that are riding. I'm usually pretty good at finding folks to hang out with but other than that I'll be virtually alone with lots of time to my thoughts, reading, or whatever I do to pass the time. I'll be taking along a couple of books, my scriptures, and other things to pass the time. I'll post my reading list later along with other things I'm taking with me that might seem out of the ordinary.

Only 6 days until departure!