I embarked on an easy ride at Collingwood over the weekend (ROUTE MAP). A hilly route with some long climbs but at a manageable gradient & pace. Perfect for getting my legs ready for another cycling race next weekend. (Photo credit: Thanks to Hussein & Mustafa for some of the photos below)
Over 20 of us met up at Days Inn & Suites parking lot (our hotel for Saturday night). A huge group!! The original plan to start pedaling at 10am was scrapped as we waited for the rain to stop. Finding ways to pass the time got a bit crazy …..
The weather changed for the better at 11am. Off we go!!
The route started out relatively flat for the first 20km. 6km into the ride, Sean already needed quick roadside assistant – a little air in his rear tire.
We were mostly cycling along Hwy 26. Due to the number of kids with us, Mustafa directed us to a gravel trail running parallel to it to avoid traffic.
20km. Arrived at Thornbury at Bruce St. We took a long ice cream break at Harbour Cafe – line up took forever!! Coincidentally, this was the same ice cream shop I took shelter from the rain when I rode at Blue Mountains last year. I thought it was abandoned at the time!!
With all of us jacked up on sugar, we were ready to climb the escarpments. I got excited. I love me some hills!!!
Uphills tend to scatter people, especially a big group with lots of children. I was either leading or with the leading pack, waiting for the rest of the group at each turn.
38km. Just conquered 2 long hills on Grey Rd 19. I was focused & didn’t realize the group wasn’t behind me. Thank goodness Adam took the effort to climb these hills to catch up to me. A bit of phone calling, we realized everyone had stopped for lunch a couple of km’s back. It wasn’t the best news to know we had to backtrack & redo these hills again later on!! 😦
Everyone was running low on water. Our bottles haven’t been replenished since the start. The heat & dehydration combined, I started getting light-headed & cramps in my foot. The continuous uphill didn’t help the situation.
44km. Everyone was thrilled to see the Ravenna General Store. I rushed in, bought a huge bottle of water, drank it, & lay down on the bench.
Everyone felt much better after this break. Time to continue up those hills!
54km. Full 5km of downhill, descending towards Georgian Bay. So picturesque!! What a great reward for the earlier grinding efforts.
72.5km. Arrived back at Days Inn & Suites. I was about half hour ahead of the main group. Perfect time to check in to the hotel!!
What a fun trip!! The kids were amazing. None of them complained – even a 5-year-old was able to cycle up those hills!! Incredible stamina!