Yesterday I took the bike out for a second check-out ride before I return it tonight to Bike Gallery in Portland for disassembly and shipment to the ZenCog bike shop [linkie] in Jacksonville, Florida. I won’t see it again for a little bit more than another month. This is unfortunate, but bringing the bike back to Alaska for the next four weeks would cost me about $400 that isn’t in the budget. I’ll have to make do with the stationary bike and possibly a rental from a local bike shop for my continued prep rides before I head for Jacksonville around the 19th of July. I’ll keep you posted.
Everything went great on the ride, which was a shade under eight miles/15 kilometers in just over 50 minutes on a gravel path. I’d estimate that the loose surface on the path slowed my pace by about 20%. The loose gravel gave me the jitters in a few places, too.
The path was on top of a flood control dike along the Coweeman River, a minor stream that drains into the Columbia just south of where I started. If I looked to my left for the first several miles, I had down-at-the-heels industrial scenery. To my right I had the river, which is mostly a high-banked ditch, and Interstate 5. The last mile or so of the ride before the turn-around point was prettier- through a park on the left and with the river much more natural looking in the other direction. It rained big drops for a few minutes, but I dried pretty quickly. Each of my days the first week will be on average five times this distance on pavement. I’ll need to get up super early, as the July summer in north Florida will be brutal if I’m not done (or most of the way with a short evening ride remaining) by mid-morning. I figure if I’m sustaining 12 miles/20 kilometers per hour by the day I start the ride I’ll be in good shape.
I can do this.