19 April 2010 - 7:52Gravel Ground
This will be a Dicky-esque post. So much went on for the Gravel Grinder, that I can easily milk more than one post out of it. And, if anyone has any pictures they would like to share, please send them to me at georgew at bike29 dot com. I’ll put them up in a separate post.
What promised to be a soaking, wind swept crap-fest, actually turned out to be a pretty awesome event. The weather forecast was not looking good for the whole weekend. 100% chance of rain on Saturday (true) and a 60 % chance of rain on Sunday, which in VT means it will rain 60% of the day.
Fortunately, the 40% window worked in our favor (mostly).
I had capped the ride at 150 folks this year, and gosh darn it if most of these people actually showed up to ride. I was very happy to see the all the riders at the start line, all with smiles, and all ready to go out and have a good time.
Because we were down a couple of our regular volunteers, and Mandy was out riding the course, I was wound up a bit tight to begin with, not knowing what to expect, do or otherwise. I ended up running the aid station, which was to be passed twice during the ride. This meant I got to borrow Nat’s big assed truck, and Kerian, Seamus and myself brought up a whole bunch of snacks and party favors to the coldest spot in VT. This is the view we were blessed with.
Almost like clockwork, the fast guys came blazing through 45 minutes into the ride. These guys were either out for blood, or had better things to do than ride bikes in crappy weather. One of the fast guys came through and stopped to take advantage of the delicious canned beer selection I had brought up. Keiran jumped out of the truck and yelled “Hey Dada! That’s Thom Parsons!”
Of course, the usual suspects were there to assert the socialness of the ride.
All told, the ride lasted 2-3:30 hrs for most folks, climbed 3100ft over 29 or so miles. The after ride feast was provided my Frida’s, which is seriously some of the best food I have eaten. If you are ever in Stowe, go there.
The best part? We were all cleaned up and packed away by 1:30!
A big thank you to everyone who helped, all of our participants, every one of our illustrious volunteers, Meegan for running the registration like a well oiled machine, Nat for riding sweep, Richard for taking pictures (you’ll see those tomorrow), Factotum for yet another first class t-shirt, Frida’s Taqueria for the outstanding food, and the kind folks at the Pilgrim Partnership for letting us throw a party in their parking lot.
Tomorrow, more of the details…