|We were on it before the crack of dawn|
So, Jeremy and I weren't all that conversant as we got going, since it was still dark, and we both would have rather been in bed yet. However; it has been shown that the more we can punch out in one sitting, the easier it is to knock down the beast that is the newest Trans Iowa route plan.
We can research it all out with every on-line resource available, make our best "edumacated" guesses, come up with our best thought out plan, and still get handed a bag full of dead ends. You know, like last year. We spent the better part of a day rumbling around looking for reroutes when we found copious mistakes on the maps. That required a full-on second day of recon, and then we still didn't have everything sewn up. So yeah......my advice is to never think your route is bullet proof until you've actually done the route. You have to spend the time to recon it physically. There are no short cuts.
That's why we don't mind doing this, because even though it is not easy, it saves a lot of headaches down the road. We get the best possible accuracy, and that means the world to me and, I am sure, most of the riders of Trans Iowa.
|Necessary fluids (Image by J. Fry)|
|Agricultural activity was high. We couldn't pass this guy even if we had wanted to. Wide load!|
Speaking of which, there are some of those infamous dirt ribbons out there waiting for T.I.v12 riders. I didn't think there were any in the first leg, but recon turned up about a third of a mile stretch right before the checkpoint. It won't even go noticed unless it rains. It's almost not a Level B it is so nice. Then there are at least four going into Checkpoint #2. A few are heinous. One may get nixed. Post CP#2 there are two bad ones. Get ready. If it is wet at all there will be hike-a-bike. And at a couple places, even if it isn't wet. Probably. That's my best guess now.
|Level B road.|
All told, we will be rerouting a bit here and there which is adding and taking away mileage. A final tally is yet to be determined, but something 335-ish? Yeah.....that's what we're thinking now. There is one part that needs a solution yet which will determine a lot going toward the final total. When we have that figured out we can announce our numbers. That said, we are pretty sure we have something else already figured out.
That would be cut-off times. Jeremy and I discussed this a lot, and he crunched some numbers as well. Here's what we're looking at: Time cut-off for Checkpoint #1 remains at 8:30 am. Ease of the route and lack of any "real" Level B factored heavily into this. There is a lot more pavement in this section as well than there ever has been. So, there you have it. Coming to Checkpoint #2 is going to entail less mileage than before, probably about 155-ish into the course, so we're looking really hard at a 7:30pm cut-off, which is right at about about 10 miles each hour to cover on the course.
Rookies should have cards rolling in today. I'll have a running roster of possible entrants on the T.I. site.