From the Peddalin Press:
It’s the middle of July! Where has the season gone? It has been a tough one at times to get rides in consistently, yet I see many of you out there, and many more racking up some big rides via Strava. Despite the seemingly incessant rains, and the constant threat of rain on Tuesday nights, those who have taken the chance to come out have been enthusiastic to say the least!
This week, the format is a little different. The ‘B/BB’ route is for one and all to try, if they wish - it is the annual ‘King and Queen of the Climbs’ ride. NOTE: IF YOU DO NOT WISH to do this ride, the ride listed as the ‘A’ ride is an option. It is actually 1.5 miles shorter, though you’ll still have to do some climbing, though not as long as the other ones. The one thing I would ask is that if you are NOT an A rider, but are choosing this option, stay together, and regroup as needed after each climb when the group invariably separates.
For those DOING the B/BB route, here’s how it works. We roll out together from the Middle School in Boalsburg, then ride together as best as we can through Oak Hall, then Lemont, then Houserville to Rock Road. when we get to the 90-degree turn to the left to go up from the fishing area to the Airport, there is our first climb. The goal is to climb together. Now, if there are 25 riders all attempting this, it’s not going to go equally well. There is no start/finish line, there is no clock. I hope everyone is on the ‘honor’ system. It’s an all-out sprint to the top. The first one to arrive grabs 5 points. Second place gets 4, third place gets 3, fourth place two, fifth gets one. The rest…0.
Once to the top, we wait for ALL riders to finish, then we roll and a gentle pace to the next climb, the hardest of them all, Upper Gyp. The last tenth of a mile the gradient is near 20% - not for the feint of heart! Once we cross the iron grate bridge at the bottom of the hill, we group together, then take off for Valley View Road. Same scoring system. Once EVERYONE has reached the top and had a chance to catch their breath and get a drink, we then roll along Valley View to the west until we turn left on Filmore. Once we get to the bottom TOGETHER, and all safely cross 550, we go all out to the airport, the top of climb #3. Same point system.
After we all get to Fox Hill Road, we’ll turn Right, and cruise at an EAST pace along the rest of the course until we get to College Avenue. We will gather right before turning RIGHT to go up SQUIRREL Drive, and then it’s every man and woman for themselves to the top! The fourth and shortest and final climb!
Once done, quickly tally points (you will have to do this, because I will be NOWHERE in sight of the leaders!!!) to arrive at the overall winners. Prizes will be awarded to the top two finishers in both male and female categories!
For those of you like me, that don’t stand any chance of grabbing the prizes, this is an opportunity to simply test your climbing abilities! See how far you’ve come! And with others doing it as well, there’s support from everyone!
After climbing Squirrel Drive, gather just after turning onto Oak Ridge Avenue. There, the leaders have two choices: 1) go back down Squirrel Dr.; turn right onto College, then bear right on Elmwood, then go straight at the light onto Boalsburg Road to return to the finish. 2) Stay on Oak Ridge, go left at the end on Country Club, then RIGHT onto Branch Road, and find your way to the bike path along Atherton Street, turning LEFT on Villa Crest Drive to go around back to the Elementary School to return to the Middle School. Again, this is at the discretion of the leaders pending general consensus. This is a result of the bridge being closed on Branch Road.
We will repeat these instructions Tuesday night!
Don’t forget to tell your friends about the Thursday night ‘Slow and Easy’ Rides! We’ve had lower turnout this year, but this is a great way to introduce newer cyclists to riding on the roads at shorter distances and easier speeds! These are ‘no drop’ rides, so there will always be a ‘buddy’ at the back to make sure everyone completes the ride safely!