Location = To Sandia Crest and Back Distance = 70.06 Time = 7:12:23 Ave. Speed = 9.7 Max. Speed = 42.0 Monthly Dist. = 70.06 Yearly Dist. = 870.88
This was a difficult ride. I haven't done any riding since last month's Streak Ride, and I haven't spent much time in the gym. I knew that this was going to be tough so I left the house very early in the morning, around 7:00 a.m. Also, since I am on break between summer term and fall, I decided to go on a Thursday rather wait until the weekend.
Temperatures were in the upper 60s when I left the house, and there were some clouds out, especially over the east mountains which is where I was headed. It stayed very comfortable down Tramway as I headed for Tijeras Canyon. They had begun reconstructing the Tramway Trail for some reason, and the section between Cloudview and Central was brand new asphault having only been laid down the day before. There were signs and barricades saying the trail was closed, but it looked okay to me. I didn't feel like crossing the street to make the detour so I rode on the new trail. I believe that I was probably the very first trail user to go on that new section of trail. From there I made my way through Tijeras Canyon and through Cedar Crest to my break spot. The creek was dry but maybe it will flow again next year.
After downing a PowerBar I got back on the bike and began the slow spin to the top. I was feeling weak so I stopped at Capulin to take a break. The Capulin area was still closed, and there was a guy there doing some work and moving dirt around with a front-end loader. He was surprised to see someone hanging out at a picnic table but he didn't seem to mind my presence. I rested for a few minutes and then continued my journey upward, keeping an eye out for bears. With about three and a half miles to go until the top, I started to get a cramp in my left leg. I quickly drank a bunch of water and the cramp subsided and didn't return. I stopped again at 10,000 feet for a short break, and then made the final stretch to the top. A wind came up as I rode the last couple of miles, and even became a tailwind as a came down the final curve. That was nice. It was a pleasant 62 degrees at the top, and I didn't need my jacket. I'll bet that I need it next month when September rolls around. I went up to viewpoint to look out because the clouds seemed very dark. It looked like there was a storm over Albuquerque and towards Rio Rancho. While I was up there some guy asked me how long it would take me to get back down to the bottom. I told him 30 minutes. That's a lot quicker than the two and a half or three hours that it took me to climb. I was very slow.
The ride down was fast and I filled up on water at the gas station, and ate a Twix Bar. Yummy! I hung out for a few minutes and then saddled up and rode off into the heat of the day. As I headed back to Albuquerque it got hotter and it got muggier. I was hoping that the storm would miss me. As I headed up Tramway I could see it off to the west. Somewhere around Menaul it started to sprinkle on me. It was the kind of moisture that you might feel on a windy day from a sprinkler that was a 100 feet away. Very gentle. It was so gentle, in fact, that it wasn't even enough to get anything wet. When it hit the ground it evaporated immediately and didn't even leave spots. When it hit me it helped to cool me down. I think that that was the best rain I have ever ridden in. Ever. It continued like that until around Academy and then it stopped.
One thing that was very nice about this ride was the lack of traffic as I made the big climb. That's a big advantage to going on a weekday. Another successful Streak Ride is in the books.
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