Thursday, October 15, 2015

Empty Surprise

The harvest continues. Now they are gleaning the corn from the firlds.
I have this new Grava Bikes rig I am testing/reviewing for right now. You can check out the intro, if you want to, here. So, anyway, it needs to get ridden, obviously, and yesterday was an opportune time to get some riding in, since I had the day off from work at the shop. I stuck around the house until very late in the morning, or "fore noon", as my older relatives used to say, due to it being quite chilly yet. At least the winds had died down to reasonable levels. The two previous days were ridiculous in that the winds were blowing up to 40mph at times.

I finally clipped in a little before high noon, and set out to do the 3GR route, initially. On the way out, I was feeling okay, but as soon as I hit Moline Road, I felt like I was dragging an anchor. It could have been me. I did eat an early lunch before I left. Typically I fire off better on an empty stomach. So there was that. However; there was also a pretty steady Northwesterly breeze, and it could have something to do with that. Then the bike was alien to me as well. I had to find out "how it liked to dance", so to speak, and I wasn't quite settled in as far as fit goes and as far as the bike's quirks too. Likely it was a bit of all of those things, but I wasn't having the best time out of the gate. A stop to adjust the saddle height made a big difference, and then I was feeling a bit more sprightly. The meal began to digest better, which also helped things along. The bike's quirks? Still not quite there yet. All I'll say now is, "Holy saddle to bar drop, Bat Man!". This is definitely a "racy" set up!

Fall colors are a bit "dusky" this year. Not really popping like in some years. 
 Well, I'll get back to this bike some other day and tell ya'all about that, but for now, I'll just concentrate on the ride story. See, I had it all planned out for the 3GR route. I put on two old Profile plastic bottle cages, and slammed in two big bottles under the medium sized Tangle Bag, which barely fit, and slipped a couple gel packets in there, just in case. I started out with a pair of gloves, but I got too warm and ditched those in the Tangle Bag. This time of year it is hard to judge what you need as the temperatures vary wildly within the span of even an hour in some cases. One minute you are fine with a windbreaker, for instance, then the next it is sweltering. Good thing I attached the Tangle Bag!

The dry wind also reminded me that I had attached the two cages and put two bottles on there. I grabbed one and it felt strangely light. Oh oh! I forgot to fill them! Bah! Oh much for cracking out 40 miles. I wasn't in the mood for cramps and a major bonk. So, I cut the route short and headed for the shed. It was the right decision, as I need to bond with this bike a bit yet. The tires are even something I haven't been on till now- Specialized Trigger Pro tires- and they are a different beast, which I need to dial in with air pressure yet. So, I got in about half of what I was expecting, and then I had a bunch of water!

I topped off, hopped on the Titanium Mukluk, and made the round trip to the shop to grab the day's mail for Trans Iowa. One card! That was a surprise. If I see a trickle till the end of the week next week, it may be that almost everyone that sent a card in will get in. Fine by me. I wasn't expecting to see just one card though. Who knows, that may change in a hurry soon.

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