Closeup of a yellow “Lion of Flanders” stencil spray-painted onto road asphalt

Ride Report: La Doyenne

Published 2016-05-02

I rode the eastside RondePDX ride today. A week late you will note. (Hey I am always late to the party. For example I only just learned about twerking).

It was hard.

I’ve done the westside Ronde 3 times? Four? So I have some basis for comparison.

I was pretty much in my top gear (descending) or my bottom gear (climbing) all day. And the climbing was mostly out of the saddle.

I didn’t make it any easier by choosing my 1 x 10 CX rig which bottoms out at 40T × 27T.

Actually for the first 30mi or so this felt really genius. That’s my lightest bike by far, the morning was not too hot, and I started on the north side of Mt. Scott which is all trees and shade and deers and hawks and NO CARS. I had the extremely self generous thought that “hey I could climb all day.”

Then after noon I ran out of food and started the Tour De Suburbia up and down and up and down and down all the cul de sacs between Sunnyside road and Happy Valley in the beating sun. Bonked. There was a moment on Quail Ridge Dr. where I got off my bike and pushed it. Like a chump. To be fair I was getting charley horses in my hams and quads, it was walk or quit. My hams were not used to 5 hours of pulling up through the bottom of the stroke.

Eventually I hoisted my seat (to stretch my hams) & started cutting paperboys up those hills. It got easier. I made it home.

I went 5 hours without peeing and when I finally did it was brown. I drank at least 6 pints of water and peed it all out through my skin. My kit was salty.

Now please excuse me I have to eat all the ice cream.