Saturday, July 2, 2011. Temperature under 100, wind under 20 mph, time for a ride. Computer seems to be back to working after losing all my documents and pictures. All I can say is I am glad I have a commercial back up system. Last weekend a group of us rode a route called the Seven Sisters. However, with a broken machine, the ride wasn't posted. Maybe during a winter lull I can post. But on to the current ride.
Being a three day week end, a lot of people were out of town, but Velma Ogan, Christine Jones, Cindy Simmons, Mark Seals, and Rick Ogan were at the 8 a.m. start.
Beginning of the ride looked like this. A slight decline before the road takes us up close to a 1,000 feet in elevation over the next 14 miles.
Six pedal strokes into the ride--first problem. Cindy's brake was dragging. As always, Rick was ready to jump in and help.
Problem solver--Rick Ogan.
Velma and Cindy rolling out.
Christine warming up.
Mark was still all smiles as he didn't know yet that his derailer was going to malfunction the whole first part of the ride.
I was lucky enough to get most everyone's picture before we started spreading out.
Ranchers all along the road were participating in brush control. Later, rows and rows of scrub cedar, mesquite, and other moisture-sapping vegetation were aligned ready to be burned if we ever have enough rain to ease the burn ban.
Road looks as if it goes forever.
There are 12 of these "humps" in the 14 miles of road before it dead ends at a ranch. Most rises range from 3-5% grade. Good practice for some of the upcoming rides.
For every up, there is a down. Although we are still gaining in elevation, the road looks deceiving as it seems to be a series of rollers.
The windmill is as lonely as it looks. Very few windmills are in the area.
I got all excited when I saw this large bird in the tree. I told Mark it was an eagle. Later one of the three on the far right flew off--buzzards.
Right around the corner to the left is the dead end gate. Cindy and Rick had already been there. Christine is on her way.
Christine, Mark, and I make the turn around and head for the
rest stop. There are three shade trees on the route. This is the largest one close to the dead end. Christine and I dropped off the cooler with iced water before the ride. Although the temperature was still below 100, the cold water hit the spot.
I had mentioned Mark's derailer acting up. At the stop, he, Rick, and with the help of Velma, fixed the problem. One the way back, Mark was able to fly.
Cindy and Velma taking advantage of the shade.
These trees could provide little shade. It looks like a fall picture, but it is just a dry season picture. San Angelo has had 2.68 inches of rain this YEAR.
Christine enjoying the respite.
Time to head back the way we came. The dip is deceiving. Most of us were able to hit over 30 mph without trying.
Every once in a while, the terrain would level out and allow one to rest.
Dan and LeAnn were running late but joined us as we were returning. They had ridden from their house and had put on more miles than we had at this point.
If the conversation is good, one does not realize that it is up hill.
Road flattens back out. Christine out front but will soon be reeled in.
Not sure if I counted these humps as part of the twelve.
I am sure this one was counted.
Back to level road and conversation.
Christine (on right) was reeled in and joined the group.
Group completing a long slight incline.
Nearing the end. All downhill from here.
I would like to say this rancher was flying the flag in honor of the 4th of July. However, he is patriotic the year round and flies the flags daily.
Rick and Velma after the ride. If anyone missed comments on Velma during the return trip, it was because she flew back. Waited on us so long she got worried and came in her truck after us. Thanks, but we were on a social ride.
Cindy Simmons. Happiness is successfully completing her longest ride of this year--28.8 miles. Good going Cindy.