Terry Moran recently got a road bike and was anxious to start getting miles. I started in Dunn Loring and offered to meet him in Alexandria at the Marina for a trip down the Mount Vernon Trail.
Still a bit chilly for late April, the temperatures were in the mid 50s.
This is a popular trail but not so much on a cool weekday. We didn’t have to dodge too many people.
The trail mostly follows the Potomac River although there are some beautiful stretches of boardwalk, mostly over wetlands. Boardwalks scare me ever since I crashed on one on this trail in July 2013.
It is mostly a flat trail but close to Mr. Washington’s estate it becomes hilly. Not long but short steep little climbs.
It was a nice ride. Nothing epic but great scenery. And Terry only fell once – when we approached an intersection the same time as a BMW. He panicked as he unclipped and fell over in the grass. The driver, a beautiful woman, and I laughed.
Three years ago I was introduced to a cancer group. I was a “pedal pal” for Patrick Sheridan and then two years ago, for Anthony Venida. I “guided” (term used loosely) the 2013 and 2014 versions of Team Portland through western Pennsylvania. Last year some of those same alumni invited me on a training ride and this year, Kiera Zitelman, invited me to a training ride.
Last year there were 21 alumni and friends showed up to support three riders. The numbers today were a little better – six riders total.
There were three groups of two riders plus two or three helpers. I jumped in with 2015 riders Hannah Rose and Ellie Churchville and 2013 alumni Andrew Porter and Paul Wetzstein. We were in the first group and led the way. After a rest stop, Hannah flatted and got to learn how to change a flat. The other two groups rolled by.
Once fixed, our group caught and passed the last group and I told them I would drop back and ride sweeper. Kiera was with Bruria Hammer, who was struggling getting up and over one of the rises. We encouraged her then rode together with the last group into downtown. Actually, Hilary Kaufman and I rode ahead of the group and made our way into downtown Annapolis first.
The return ride was uneventful. Well, for many it was their longest ride ever.
At the rest stop I suggested that I would shepherd Bruria back to start if she wanted to ride again. She had ridden one way and was riding back in the car. I mentioned it to Bruria who at first thought she would but, ultimately, chose not to ride with us as we left.
In the end, it was my longest ride since knee surgery which left me feeling pretty good.