Back on the bike today after not riding yesterday due to the cold front. I wanted to add a few of the miles I missed on Monday when I had to cut the ride short because of the incoming weather. Riding to Huffman was the plan but I altered the route by going north on E. Lake Houston Parkway, Smith Road east to FM2100, and north to Huffman-Eastgate Road. Huffman-Eastgate took me to FM1960 at the Liberty County Line. I figured this route would be 34 miles or so. The actual distance was 35.43 miles. I averaged 15.4 mph which was higher than I expected maybe because the SSE wind had a biting chill to it and I wanted to drive up my body heat. Riding this direction is the reverse of how I usually ride. I wondered if this would bring out some dogs that I slide past when I go the usual direction but none of them appeared. As I rode I was thankful for the many streets and roads I ride and the lack of dogs chasing me.
Yesterday the weather was windy with the temperature hovering in the low 60′s in the late afternoon. Today when I first started at 1:05 I wondered if I dressed heavy enough to combat the 65 degrees and biting wind. The cold fronts roll through and go out into the gulf where they hit the wind and then move back ashore to give us another dose. The sky was a little cloudy which did not help me stay warm. I wore shorts, leg warmers, short and long sleeve jerseys and a windbreaker. I did not realize I was perspiring so much until I stopped at the Huffman Chevron and opened my windbreaker to get the snacks. The bottom of my jerseys in the back were dripping wet. When I got home at 3:55 I noticed my gloves were soaked next to the jacket cuffs. Surprisingly my bandana was not wet all over.
I had a small scare riding west over Lake Houston on FM1960. As I neared the west side of the lake I ran over the edge of a rock and the rear tire made a loud crack as it shot the rock away. This made a lot more noise than when I had my pinch flat the other day. This time the noise was all that happened and the tire stayed at full pressure.
April miles are adding up to my 778 mile goal. After today’s ride I am up to 414.56 miles. The week totals 51.45 miles and year to date is 1674 miles.
The weather is slowly recovering from the cold front. Thursday it should be 74 degrees and partly cloudy. Riding should also be in the forecast.
I thought I fixed the Garmin 510 after yesterday’s problems but after rolling out the driveway I saw the cadence sensor was not working. Pulling over I went to setup and enabled the sensor function and pressed the search icon. A beep sounded and the sensors began recording. I am not sure how the sensor function got turned off. Fortunately this was within 75 feet of leaving the driveway. Now with the Garmin backup I set off on the route to Huffman. I had two goals on this ride: get to Huffman in time to see the Amtrak train going to New Orleans and get back home before any rain. Sad to say I failed on both of these.
Either the Amtrak train beat me there or I did not take long enough at the Huffman Chevron for the train to pass. As far as the rain goes when I got south of Kingwood Drive on the way to Atascocita a light mist started. The mist stayed with me until I returned from Huffman crossing backover Kingwood Drive. When I stopped in Huffman I wiped the water from my sunglasses (not really needed for the sun but they kept my glasses dry) and helmet before heading back home. I put on sunscreen before biking and I should have made it water repellent. The temperature was 75 when I started (12:02) and 74 when I finished (2:31). At the beginning wind was from the south at 12 mph with 20 mph gusts. At the conclusion of the ride the gusts disappeared. I am glad I selected a long sleeve jersey to keep somewhat dry and warm. This is the first wet ride for the Stradalli RP-14 Carbon bike. I was wanting to delay that for a while. A quick wipe down when I got home got the bike dry and clean.
The route for today’s ride resembled the one I used on the evening rides before I retired during CDT. Then I tried to bike 25 miles but today I altered the beginning streets and pushed the length to 29.21 miles. Average speed was 15.6 mph. After 3 days April now shows 95.05 miles. The totals 134.37 miles and year to date is 1355 miles. I need 683 miles to reach my April goal of 778 miles.
Tomorrow’s weather will be a little cooler with a high of 72, partly cloudy sky and no rain. A front is supposed to pass through tonight some time.
For the last few rides I noticed the screen on my Garmin 510 had collected some pine pollen. As I was getting ready to leave on the ride I took a towel and wiped off the screen. What I didn’t notice was I change the profile setting to one I don’t use. So off I go happy and dumb. At the 5 mile point I noticed the Garmin lap chime did not go off so I checked it and found the problem I caused. Getting the Garmin to the right profile took forever and I was frustrated. On top of that the data was now going to be treated as two separate rides. This wrong profile for some reason does not record the cadence. This messed up the data bad. Fortunately Sports Tracks has the function to join rides which I did. I should’ve turned the Garmin off before wiping the screen off. Maybe next time I will remember this.
Now to the ride. Wind was the order of the day. It was from the SSE at 20 mph with 30 mph gusts when I rolled out at 12:45. The temperature (78 at the start, 80 at the end) was warm enough for a short sleeve jersey and shorts. This is the first time this year I think. The overcast sky made me wonder if I would get home dry but no rain fell.
I rode 32.41 miles but I am not sure at what average speed. Whatever I did to the Garmin several times the speed came up at 95.8 mph. I did feel like I was going quite that fast. April miles increased to 65.85, 105.16 miles for the week and 1326 miles year to date.
Not too far from my house I saw these azaleas. The bright color are at many houses. I also stopped for a “selfie” to show my new Stradalli jersey.
With March in the rear view mirror I am looking forward to April. Today’s ride was a good start. I rode north to Roman Forest Blvd. and then turned south back through New Caney and then Valley Ranch. I left home a little later than I planned at 1:48 and got back at 4:39. This put me after the school bus parade at the schools I ride by in Valley Ranch, Briar Tree and Kings Manor. This is a good because the traffic around the schools can get strange as parents and children do unexpected things.
This route was 33.44 miles long with a 15.3 mph average speed. Weather was kinder today with a few degrees warmer (82.9 when I finished), partly cloudy sky and a 14 mph SSE breeze. The wind did not slow me down like yesterday. There were a few dark clouds above the Stripes station when I took a break there around 21.8 miles into the ride but nothing came from it.
My new Stradalli RP-14 continues to please me with its handling and lightness. The breeze did not have any effect on the wheels today.
My April mileage goal will be the same as 2013: 779 miles. Now that today is in the books I have 763 miles to go. I am up to 1293 miles year to date and 72.75 miles this week.
Tomorrow could reach 84 degrees under a partly cloudy sky. I hope to be out there in it biking. More sun screen.