Thursday, June 11, 2015

Geezer Ride 3: Recon

It was hot and windy!
Okay, so this is also an announcement: There will be another Geezer Ride on Saturday, August 15th. It will start and end in Waterloo, Iowa. Probably an 8:30am start time. Breakfast at the HyVee on Logan Avenue before the ride. Post ride festivities in downtown Waterloo at a bar, (to be determined later), and maybe some other shenanigans, but we'll see.... 44-45 miles is what it looks like now. Maybe 1200 feet of climbing. Maybe. It's pretty flat.....

The Recon: Wednesday was the recon of the route. Jeremy had been pestering me to get off my fat arse and get ready for Odin's Revenge. (He is my unofficial "coach") So, then Tony had been in at the shop to chat and the subject of the next Geezer ride came up. We batted around some ideas. I asked Tony if he was up for a ride Wednesday, and he said he was. So it was that at 9:00am we met to recon Tony's suggestion for a route. I liked it for the several "points of interest" along the way, which can double as a way to gather everyone back up into a group again. So, here I will present the proposed route and some of those things we will be seeing.

It was a hot, dry, (low humidity), and windy day. We had a long slog to the North right into the Northeast wind, which was far stronger than forecast. Chunky gravel was the norm, and we worked hard going up past Denver. Along the way we saw the "big rock" of Big Rock Road, Bennington #4 school house, and the Maxfield school, which is next to St. John's Lutheran Church, believed to be the oldest church in Bremer County, and was established in 1856.

The 'big rock" is nearly engulfed in the flourishing plant life here. 
We then took in a stretch to the West, and we will cover a big part of my usual 3GR route in this section which will include the beautiful and unusual Ivanhoe Road. Then we will end up just a few miles Southeast of Waverly Iowa where we will turn South and head up and down some roller coaster hills to just skirt the Boy Scout Camp.

There are some beautiful wooded hills around the Boy Scout and old Girl Scout camp areas.
After the biggest hills of the ride, we will zig-zag Southwest to take in our first and only resupply/eating spot of the ride in Black Hawk County's and Bremer County's oldest town, Janesville, Iowa, which is a village that straddles the county line. Then we will eascape Southward and will be obliged to ride about two miles of county blacktop before we turn West and eventually South, then East on Ford Road. There we will go by the Washington Chapel, which is a neat little country church tucked away in a hillside.

It gets pretty flat for a while after Janesville.
You'd blow right by this church if you didn't know it was there.
Then we will head straight back East toward our beginning, turning South eventually to see Moline Road's namesake farm, and then we will be back in Waterloo having done about 44.5 miles give or take a bit. Typical "Geezer Rules" will be in effect: No one gets dropped, we will stop a LOT, and we will lounge around in Janesville for as long as seems reasonable. We reconned the course in a bit over 4 hours including our stops, but I assume this could take as long as six hours, depending upon the group, weather, and road conditions. Speaking of road conditions..........

It is VERY dry, dusty, and chunky out there now. Tony was just uncovered by the wind here after a car had dusted us.
The roads are really dusty now. The Counties have spread a bunch of fresh, deep gravel in many spots over the entire course. Will it be anything like this in August? It could very well be....or not. The deeper gravel may cause rookie riders some concern, but again- we aren't leaving anyone behind.

Stay tuned for more updates here soon.......

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