Lake Monroe Loop


This is a description of a route and not one ride. It was three rides on the Lake Monroe Loop which may or may not be its official name.

On January 24 I had a reservation on the AutoTrain from Sanford to Lorton, Virginia. The train left at 5:00 pm, but check-in with a vehicle was from 11:30 until 3:00. I wanted a nice ride in the area before a 15-hour train ride.

Near the AutoTrain, Sanford

I found a ride on RidewithGPS that started at the Bicikleta Bike Shop in Sanford. It was a 27-mile loop around the lake and looked perfect. I found the bike shop and started to follow the route that I had uploaded to my bike computer.

Bicikleta Bike Shop, Sanford

I was only two blocks from the downtown area which is absolutely charming. Sanford has brick streets so I checked out the downtown before starting my ride.

Downtown Sanford

Downtown Sanford is only one block from the lakefront which is very pretty.

Lake Monroe, Sanford

I obviously did not study the route. I envisioned a 27-mile route hugging this lake the entire time. What I got was three and a half miles of lakefront views. I crossed a bridge over the St. Johns River which flows into the lake. And then I picked up a series of bike trails.

Coast to Coast Trail

Part of the trail picks up a section of the Coast to Coast Trail

Coast to Coast

There were sections of boardwalks in the swamp. (Boardwalks scare me) Pretty but I’m not a fan of tires on wood.


I wasn’t quick enough with the camera but as I came around one corner I saw a juvenile armadillo scurry off the trail.

More boardwalks

I gave up lakeside for woods. And swamp.

Not so wildlife. Goats.

Eventually, the trail connected with a bike path next to Fl. State Hwy 415. It is separate from the highway and has an underpass at the one bridge to get to the other side to cross the river.

Lake Monroe

About five miles from Sanford the trail ends and one must ride on the road. But here the roads are more streets than highways.

Red corn snake

The first time I rode it when I got back to the start I continued a second pass down the lake and found the AutoTrain. It was just an enjoyable loop.

Osteen Trail Head and Hwy 415

My next AutoTrain reservation was on March 13. Arriving on March 14 I was prepared to ride the same loop. However, I thought it would be fun to reverse the route so I rode the same course but counterclockwise this time. Near the end, I routed to PDQ Chicken for lunch and then used the Wahoo’s Route to Start feature to get me back to the parking lot that was two blocks from Bicikleta’s.


And it was six days later I was headed home. No AutoTrain this time but I was headed up I-4 early in the morning. I stopped at the park next to the bridge that crosses the St. Johns River. I would ride the loop again albeit with a different start location,

PDQ. Worth the trip.

There were no surprises. I could ride this loop without a map. But it’s nice to have a map on the computer as I like to display the distance remaining.

St. Johns River below I-4

This is an easy, flat, ride with lake, swamp, and forest views. I highly recommend this to anyone in central Florida looking for an easy and enjoyable ride, Finish with lunch in Sanford.

St. Johns River

Flying Fox Airport Loop


My travels took me to Orlando and I was looking for a ride. I found the Florida Freewheelers Bike Club that also sponsors the Horrible Hundred each November. They had a ride posted for today called the Flying Fox Airport Loop.

I am not a member of their club so their public site may be different than their private site. I could see a ride map but not a GPX file that I could upload to my bike computer.

A ride map (not the one for this ride)

I emailed the ride leader and asked for a GPX file. He sent me a file but it was only 5k in size. It was a data point – the ride start. I went to the ride map and drew the route in RideWithGPS. I wasn’t 100% sure but I think I got it.

Brick streets near the park

I arrived at the park at 7:30 a.m. for an 8:00 a.m. ride. At 7:45 I didn’t see any other cars. I have a feeling I was in the wrong part of the park. I decided to roll out ahead and figured I would be swept up by the group.

Toll Road – Bikes stay to the right (even though that guy didn’t)
South Goldenrod Road

It was a mixed road route. It is not for everyone. The residential streets were fine but there were some highway segments. And I was buzzed three times today. The first time a car passed by within an arm’s length. I thought the driver was careless. The second time I thought it was deliberate. And the third time I know it was deliberate. There seems to be an attitude that cyclists don’t belong on the roads and the drivers will punish you. I am also always aware that Florida has more cycling deaths per capita than any other state.

Slow with the camera – just missed getting a shot of this Spirit Airlines airplane

The route passed by the Orlando Executive Airport and then the Orlando International Airport. At one location the route went on a toll road but there was a Bike Route sign to take cyclists past the toll booth.

Jeff Fuqua Blvd – just south of the airport

On some shoulders, the roads were marked with a white line directing cyclists away from the drain grates. Very nice safety feature.

Infrastructure – Notice the white line directing bikes away from the drains
Heinztelman Blvd by Orlando Int’l Airport

It was cloudy but humid. My legs felt good although I was coming off a poor recovery (19%). I had thought about trying hard to find the group but then wondered if I would have the legs to stay with them. Catching me was a better option although they never did. I was riding well enough but at two miles per hour faster they must have been close.

Bike lane – Hansel Ave. (Englewood)

I love finding routes, downloading them to my Wahoo, and following them. So I was able to do that today. I didn’t meet any new people but that was okay too. Thanks for the ride!

Ormond Metric


My trip to Florida led me seeking sun and warmth and preferably ocean views. Or one view. I ended up at Ormond Beach because the Hampton Inn was very reasonable. I found a route I wanted to ride but the map was showing sections of unpaved road north of Flagler Beach that seemed strange. I ruled that out.

Next to Halifax River

I found a ride on RidewithGPS that I would follow. It began at the Hub Cycling in Port Orange up and over to Flagler Beach then back south to Dayton Beach. While I wanted to ride on A1A next to the ocean, the route avoided much of that when there was an alternative, presumably because of traffic and safety.

South Beach St., Daytona Beach

The roads were a mix of residential streets, country roads, a little highway, and the A1A right down through Daytona Beach. At one point I deviated from the course and rode over to the A1A.

A1A, Ocean Shore Blvd, Ormond Beach

I wasn’t sure what it would be like when I reached Daytona Beach. But on the two-lane southbound route, I found new sharrows had just been painted. A sharrow means bikes can use full lane and are often on roads where it would be too dangerous to pass a cyclist riding on the right side of the lane. Better to ride right down the middle. Any cars that would pass would already be partially in the left lane and would always move over.

Daytona Beach

I was headed into a moderately strong headwind from the south. And I as getting tired. I had two bottles with me – one with Skratch and one with water. I took two gels and two feeds. I could tell around 50 miles I was running on E.

North Beach Street, Tomoca State Park

I found a service station/convenience store and stopped in for water – and a Snickers. I haven’t had a Snickers in forever but I knew its sugars would sustain me the last 12 miles.

Tomoka River, Old Dixie Highway

I didn’t realize it at the time but this was where we started our cancer ride on April 11, 2013. Today I just missed passing the starting point because I had moved off the A1A and back to John Anderson Drive next to the Halifax River (less traffic).

Vikings. Daytona Beach Shores

I was hoping to go faster today but on that day we had a group of four setting a good pace in 2013. I wasn’t going to match that. But my goal of warmth, sun, and an ocean view was met.

Hill – Port Orange Causeway
Halifax River View from causeway bridge

Off the beaten track


SUMMARY – I have taken the Auto Train four times. I did not take coach but three times was in a room and once in a roomette.

A room or roomette comes with dining choices, coach does not. A roomette is for sleeping only and one must exit the room and use a restroom in the car. A room has a private bathroom. All are very small. Pro Tip: There is Wifi on the train and it is pretty good. There is one power outlet in the rooms and no USB ports. Plan accordingly.

While this is a cycling blog, this post is a little different. Just a little off the normal track so to speak. Off the beaten track.

Car at Lorton

In 2021 I was headed to Florida with my mother for the Pan-Florida Challenge, a 200-mile cancer charity cycling event. Rather than drive, I decided to try the Auto Train.

Auto Train Station, Lorton

The train departs from Lorton, Va., which is about 10 miles from my home and about 20 miles south of Washington, D.C. It goes to Sanford, Florida, which was about 80 miles from our first destination. We couldn’t do much better as far as those logistics.

My car is in one of those train cars

I am not going to do a true cost comparison. The Auto Train is more costly than driving, especially for multiple passengers. I also think I got nailed with a fare jump by not booking the day before when I looked at the fares. But I paid $1000 for two with a sleeper car. Amtrak calls this a room or a bedroom.

Sleeping car corridor

Driving would have been 812 miles (30 mpg) and gas was averaging $4.15 per gallon. We would have stopped en route and needed a hotel. ($111 / $160 – Call it $300)

James River, Richmond, Va.

The train has coach seats in its coach cars as well as sleeper cars. If you are willing to be in coach the train can be cost-efficient, as opposed to driving, for a party of one. Coach passengers have wide reclining seats, but they don’t lie flat. No meals are provided but one can go to the cafe car and order food there.

Auto Train Lorton, Va. – March 13, 2024

The sleeper car is an upgrade in service. One can get a private room or “roomette” plus dinner and breakfast in the dining car. In 2021 we traveled during a time COVID restrictions were in place, the main one was wearing a mask while in the public areas of the train. If we were in coach we would be subject to wearing a mask the entire time. I wasn’t going to subject my mother to wear a mask for 16 hours straight. In our room, we did not need a mask.

Take a picture (of your car), you’ll remember the number better

For rooms, we had a choice of a smaller and cheaper roomette that did not have a private bathroom. Or, as we did, a room that sleeps two or a family room that sleeps four.

Lorton, Va.

The train was scheduled to leave at 4:00 p.m. Check-in was between 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. This is for loading cars. We were in line by 12:30 p.m. I checked in at the counter and was not required to show my reservation on the app or an ID. I simply gave my name. My mother never presented herself to the agent. It was a beautiful day so we waited outside until 2:30 at which time we boarded.

Double seating in the sleeper car

We had to go up the steps to the second level of the car. The corridor was small and we found our room – B. Inside, the main “sofa” was two seats side by side that would open down into a bed. There was a rear-facing seat as well. The bathroom was a one-seater and had a shower as well. There was a sign stating that it might be easier to shower seated (on the closed toilet). Maybe if one was traveling for 2-3 days but this would be an overnight trip. No shower was necessary.

Rear-facing seat

Our car attendant was Rob, a very nice young man from Fort Washington, Maryland. He came to our car to get our food orders after we were underway. We had an option to eat in the dining car or in our room. In the dining car one would need to wear a mask except while actually eating because the virus does not transmit while one is chewing. Apparently. We chose to dine in our car.


The train pulled out of the station at Lorton around 3:50 p.m. We seemed to be on a siding for 45 minutes before rolling. I imagine that was coupling the cars carrying the automobiles to the train.

Shortly after 6:00 p.m., Rob brought dinner to the car and then came in at 10:00 p.m. to convert the room for sleeping. The dinner was surprisingly good.

Top bunk

The top portion of the cabin was pulled down and formed a top bunk. The bedding was comfortable enough but we were on a train. There was rocking and rolling, not quite violently, but shaking at times.

James River, Richmond, Va.

Breakfast was ala carte and was four cars back from ours. I donned the mask and went for a walk, returning with two hot breakfast sandwiches. There was coffee in our car. Rob came in removed the bedding and restored the seats to their upright position.

Waiting in line at Lorton

The train is direct except for a stop and a crew change and refueling in Florence, South Carolina, around 11:30 p.m. The train runs on freight train tracks and is at the mercy of freight schedules. It may or may not be on time. We were pretty close, arriving 15 minutes behind schedule.

Breakfast car

After we got off the train and gave a generous tip to Rob, we made our way outside and waited for our car. It costs $75 for priority unloading. By 2024 priority offloading would cost you $95.

Sanford, Fla.

They would take up to 30 cars for this service. I think that works out to be two car carriers on the train. For everybody else, they announced the cars would be offloaded in completely random order. It did not matter if your car was loaded first or loaded last. It was in one of those 19 auto carriers all parked side by side. I saw six on our train that were being unloaded.

Sanford, Fla.

The first cars rolled off at 9:47. Our car took 52 minutes and was near the end. Is priority offloading worth it? Of course that depends on your day’s itinerary. My sister-in-law took the train from Sanford to Lorton with all the snowbirds and waited four hours for her car.

Car rolling up at Sanford

So it was expensive. But it was stress-free. The average moving speed (52 mph) wasn’t great. One could drive faster but is subject to weather, road, and traffic delays. If it were free it certainly would be the way to go. But there is a lot to factor in whether it’s right for you or for me the next time.

The stats

I took it one way because my return trip was going to be direct to Somerset, Pa. and included bike riding on the Blue Ridge Parkway. But I’m glad to have it as an option.

Since the initial trip from Lorton to Sanford, I have made the trip three more times. On October 31, 2023, my mother and I traveled again on the Auto Train. This was a return from Sanford to Lorton. And it was Halloween. I went to Spirit Halloween for a costume but everything was expensive and picked over. We had talked about bringing a costume but I didn’t bring anything.

Like our first trip, we booked a room for the two of us. There were no COVID restrictions in place. In Sanford, I checked in for the both of us. Name only. No ID was required.

Unlike our ride during COVID restriction, dinner was in the dining car. Thankfully it was only one car behind our car. I was worried about my mother having to walk the corridor and losing her balance.

Dinner was in the dining car. They don’t have many empty chairs or tables and fill up all the tables with ones or twos. We were seated with another couple.

In the morning my mother asked me to go to the dining car and bring something back for her.

In January 2024 I was traveling alone and jumped on an Amtrak Flash Fare sale. This time I booked a roomette to see what it would be like.

Sanford Auto Train

Before checking in I went to Sanford for a bike ride. Once around Lake Monroe was just what the (Bike) Doctor ordered. I swung by the train terminal to check it out. Someone (NY plates) was already in line at 11:28 a.m. even though check-in did not open until noon.

Some donkey from New York was in line at 11:28 a.m. in Sanford

I checked in at 1:30. Once I said goodbye to my car I went inside the terminal to check in. I was given the choice of dining times, 6:00 or 8:00 p.m., and handed a boarding ticket and meal ticket. Again, no ID was requested.

Great weather in Sanford

Taking advantage of the beautiful weather, I sat outside until they announced boarding at 3:30 p.m. Amtrak has a food truck vendor on site but also offers a shuttle to downtown Sanford.


I did neither but would encourage early arriving passengers to check out Sanford. I had checked it out on a bike so I wasn’t feeling the need to go back into town.


I went to my Roomette. And that is it. Two wide bucket seats facing opposite.

Neighbor’s Roomette

The most comfortable position was to sit back and put my feet on the other chair. If you are traveling double, wash your feet and hope you like your travel partner. In the evening the attendant, mine was Max, comes in, flips the seats into the bed position, and makes the bed. There is a fold-down bed up above and I assume it’s the same as in the room. One attendant in the dining car told me some couples get two roomettes and each takes one.

There is no bathroom in the roomette so you must use one in the car itself. But the three bathrooms serve the four or xix or eight roomettes in that car so I never saw anyone else at the same time.

My car in Sanford

I chose the 6:00 dinner. To spice things up I wore my “tuxedo” cycling jersey. The dining car people loved it. I was seated with Diane, a married woman from near Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Joining us was Ed, who was also from near Wilkes-Barre. We had a fourth person come later but we didn’t bother asking his name and he wasn’t in a hurry to learn ours.

Amtrak Lorton

On this trip, there was a long delay in Florence. They may have swapped out locomotives or did a minor repair.

I went to the dining car for breakfast. It was first-come, first-served seating and I hurried to get a seat. I was the second one there. Ultimately there were five of us, including Ed and Diane from last night’s dinner. The guy across from me told me of the time that he took the train and road in coach. He said some college guy kept leaning his head on him. A scene right out of Planes, Trains, and Automobiles.

We arrived 1:15 late at 11:15 a.m. I got off the train at 11:28 and the first of the priority cars drove up 10 minutes later. It took about five minutes for the remaining cars to be unloaded. I counted five families remaining in the terminal when they called my number at 12:03 p.m., or about 35 minutes after the first priority offload that cost that guy $95.

There is Wi-Fi aboard the train that is pretty good. I can’t speak to the coach section but I think there is a power port at each chair. In the room and roomette there is one power outlet. There are no USB ports.


I jumped on another Flash Fare sale for the AutoTrain. This was one-way from Lorton to Sanford on March 13, 2024.

Cars waiting in line at Sanford, Fla. – March 14, 2024

I was traveling solo and booked a roomette. I don’t think I would travel without a sleeping berth and for a solo traveler the roomette was enough. The room has more space and is more comfortable even for one traveler plus there is the added benefit of a bathroom in the room.

Private bathroom in a car – March 13, 2024

Two weeks before I departed I got an email from Amtrak asking if I would bid on a room upgrade to a “bedroom.” My thought was the family rooms were not being used and this was what I was bidding on.

Bids started at $150 with a suggested bid of $450 for an upgrade ( a complete ripoff by the way). I bid $151 – just one dollar more than the minimum in case there were those who bid the minimum. Two days before the trip I was notified that my bid was accepted.

Auto Train Room – March 13, 2024

Living so close to the station I decided not to arrive too early. I arrived at 2:23 p.m. Although I knew the train would be relatively empty, I was taken aback when I checked in and was told my dinner would be at 8:00 p.m. All the 6:00 slots had been taken. The attendant offered me dinner in my car at 7:30 p.m. I accepted that.

En route. Passing Woodbridge, Va. – March 13, 2024

I boarded at 3:18 p.m. anticipating going to a family room. Instead, I went to a room. Or bedroom. I was disappointed mostly in that I hadn’t read the bid carefully enough. I wouldn’t have bid $151 more for a bedroom but was glad to have the extra space.

Sink in the room. These are not modern train. March 13, 2024.

These are not modern cars. Perhaps in the 70s they were. There are no USB ports. I brought my own adapter/power cord. There is only one power outlet in the room.

View of a sleeper. One power outlet, no USB outlets. Bring your own adapters.

The announcements in the room were barely audible. I always enjoy the statistics offered as the train is underway. They always tell how many people are on board and how many vehicles are being transported. And add that this is the world’s longest passenger train.

Boarding documents

The attendant came into my room. He never introduced himself but his nametag said J. Hill. I would later learn it was James. I told him I could not hear the announcements and he said he would check on it. He never did. I also told him the shower/bathroom had a cigarette smoke smell and he said he would come back with some spray. He never did.

James, the attendant. (back turned) March 14, 2024

He brought my meal to me at 7:50 p.m. in a paper bag. It was complete with plastic utensils. During COVID when they brought the meals to my mother and me we had real plates and real utensils. The steak was good but hard to cut with a plastic knife.

Flat Iron Steak – March 13, 2024

I was planning to go to the dining car for breakfast but he told me he would bring my breakfast to me. I didn’t push back on this but should have. It was as though by agreeing to dinner in my room I signed up for both meals in my room. When it was 7:50 p.m. and my dinner hadn’t yet come I almost just walked to the dining car. 7:30 is not the same as 7:50 p.m. except maybe in government travel.

Sanford, Fla. – March 14, 2024

Dinner at 7:30 p.m. in my room was a better option than dinner in the car at 8:00 p.m. Dinner in my room at 7:50 p.m. (actual) was not a better option than dinner in the dining car.

My trip – March 13-14, 2024

The train was on time. I disembarked at 9:55 a.m. The priority cars started off at 10:13. Mine came off at 10:44 a.m.

My car coming off the train in Sanford – March 14, 2024

It’s a fun way to travel. But it kills my recovery. My Whoop band said I only slept 2:20 and my recovery was just 11%. Ouch.

Whoop does not like this ride



I will be joining other passionate cyclists and riding Cykelnerven in June. It is one of Europe’s most challenging events and raises money for the MS International Federation (MSIF). Over four days in June we will tackle some of the toughest mountains that will be used in this year’s Tour de France.

There will be more added to this post but I will direct readers to my official page at Cykelnerven.

MS is very personal to me as it directly affects my family. I would like nothing more than to see a cure in my lifetime.

It is my hope that my participation in this event and by raising funds will be a beacon of hope for anyone affected by MS.

Crocs vs. Gators


This was my third time with this ride.All have been fun and they would be hard to rank if I wanted to. I don’t.

Parking Lot Full – Everglades National Park

I drove from Miami and passed a huge group ride. It also could have been a bike event but I couldn’t find an event simply by searching. I did see a photographer at the end of the street so maybe it was. My first thought was to stop and see if I could join them. But it looked to be already in progress. It was 9:30 a.m. And more importantly, I went deep yesterday and haven’t recovered.

Line to enter Everglades National Park

At lunch yesterday I had avoided any cramping. And then, a slight turn the wrong way and my hamstring about killed me. I tried to stretch my leg and bend my foot backward. Back to the car before the drive to Miami I drank a Hot Shot cramp killer. It worked in that I didn’t cramp anymore yesterday. But last night, twice in my sleep I awoke with a cramp in a calf, both calves, different times. My body was not recovered. I checked my Whoop Band score this morning. It was only 34% recovered. I knew I should stick to today’s plan which was to ride two loops at Shark Valley.

Shark Valley Visitor Center

Two loops would be simple to satisfy my daily mileage (30 miles). And also for Strava. I knew a loop was timed and I could set a PR by not stopping but I would dedicate the first loop to watching nature including stopping often for photographs. And the second loop would be just riding without stops.


Arriving Shark Valley the sign on the roadway announced the lot was full and to expect delays. There were scores of cars already parked outside the park but I got in line to see how long it would be. There were at least 12 cars in line and they would be admitted one car at a time for every one car that left. And since it was 10:15 a.m. the lot probably had just filled up and the early morning folks might be a while before leaving. I did a U-turn and went back out to the highway to park.

Cars parked on the Highway outside Shark Valley

Most of those parked on the roadside had bicycles but a few were walkers. And this observation. The government is not serious about vehicle emissions. The admission for one car was $35 whereas for one individual it was $20. For the cars that parked outside the park a couple walking in would pay more ($40) by walking in that by driving in. They want you to drive your car.

Admission Gate at Shark Valley

I have a National Park pass for free admission so it was an easy decision for me to park on the highway then ride past the long line or parked cars. But if I had a family of four in my car I would wait in the line to pay for the vehicle rather than have to pay individually for each of us with a bike, even though I would be free.


The ranger greeted me and asked for my pass as though I looked like someone who would have a pass. Of course, I did. She said that I would have a great tailwind going out and a pretty stiff headwind coming back. She was right.


I headed out of the visitor center on the straight road next to the water towards the observation tower. I only saw seven alligators in the seven miles out to the tower. Winter is the dry season and they are less active. So I saw less today than my other two rides but it was still satisfying.

Gators on the road

I arrived at the tower and saw a few people looking at a big one. I realized that with it’s longer snout and pointy teeth on the outside that it was a crocodile. I would later learn that it was a female.

That’s a crock. Also, never turn your back and take a selfie.

I counted eight alligators and one crocodile before turning to finish the loop. The second part of the loop looked uphill even though it was pancake flat.It was a struggle into the wind. Most people I saw who thought it would be fun to rend a bike realized that it isn’t fun riding into the wind. Most were walking.

After ‘while Crockodile

When I reached the visitor center I had to decide whether to ride another loop, as planned, I met a couple on mountain bikes and they asked me which way to go. I told them the wind was brutal coming back and that I thought there might be a little protection riding clockwise vs. counterclockwise.

Lots of people walking

It was then I decided I would ride the loop again but reverse my direction. I decided a PR on a loop was dumb. Strava is just for social media and I should do what I wanted to do. So I reversed direction. While I would still be nose into the wind the last seven miles, at least it would be along alligator alley and not just in the desolate grasses.

Just lounging

I soon caught the couple and then caught the site-seeing tram. Once the tram stopped and let me pass I never saw it again. I guess the driver didn’t like me drafting. Hehe.

Bird – Help me out here. Everglades.

I tried not to double count alligators. Many were in the same spots one hour later. I would say that I saw 14 today. And two crocodiles. On the way back I stopped to tell three girls to look for the two alligators on the side of the road about one mile further and after that they would see a juvenile crocodile and not long after that the adult female. They were pretty excited.

Mouth open means annoyed

It was a good day. No Strava records, well, maybe one. But that was organically because I had no segments marked.


I am a cyclist, genealogist, soccer referee, grandfather (x6), and cancer survivor. And I have ridden 105,000* miles cancer-free.

You have stumbled upon the personal blog of Barry Sherry. It is my private journal but made public. After keeping a journal for years I decided to push this out to the web. Maybe someone will find some information of value.

I have included the names, and in some cases, photos of others I have met in my journey. If you are mentioned and do not want to be, kindly contact me and I can change that.

Enjoy the blog. If you would like to know more about me, click my About Me page.

*as of Jan. 2024

Reflections on the Year – 2023


Another year of riding. Another year of life. Plenty of great and memorable experiences but maybe most importantly, no crashes. In no particular order, I present my

(In no particular order)

  • The Citrus Tour (MS-150)
  • Knotts Island Ferry Loop
  • Olivia’s Ride
  • Maryland Cycling Classic
  • Rooster Racing
  • Intracoastal Waterway Century
  • Alpine Loop Gran Fondo
  • Working on the Chain Gang
  • Hurricane Mountain Road
  • Tour de Suisse

10. THE CITRUS TOUR. The MS-150 in Championsgate, Florida started well. I rode solo but found some groups as well. Cramps got me very bad starting around Mile 60 and almost knocked me off my bike around Mile 95. I limped to the finish and made a six-hour century but hurt so bad I rode 25 on Sunday instead of 50.

Start line

9. KNOTTS ISLAND FERRY LOOP. It was a route that I drew with RideWithGPS and then rode it. I found gravel (oops) and wasn’t sure about parking at the ferry but had a glorious 50-mile ride from North Carolina into southeast Virginia then back to Knotts Island and a 40-minute ferry ride across the Currituck Bay.

Knotts Island Ferry

8. OLIVIA’S RIDE. Formerly Ride Home Roads, this event, now known as Olivia’s Ride, was also Ben King’s retirement ride. Very nice metric century ride.

Ben and Barry

7. MARYLAND CYCLING CLASSIC. The second year of this race and my second time attending it. Unlike last year I did not volunteer but was able to ride before the race and to just be a fan.

My perfect artwork

6. INTRACOASTAL WATERWAY CENTURY. Went to Melbourne, Fla. and discovered this gem out of Cocoa Village. I fell in with a group like the Old Cranks (Warrenton, Va.) but they were all from the Space Coast Freewheelers, the group sponsoring the ride. I felt really good to the point that I thought about riding off on my own and dropping the guys I was with but we had already formed a cohesive group at that point and I would have been a jerk.

It was also Halloween weekend

5. ALPINE LOOP GRAN FONDO. This cancer-raising event has become my go-to century of the year. Tired from a late night in Pittsburgh the day before my body wasn’t primed for a long ride. Instead I rode the Metric Century (65 miles) and probably became the first rider in history to have ridden all five of their routes.

Chasing Buggy

4. CHAIN GANG. I went to Maryland’s Eastern Shore with a group from Prince William Cycling Club. With limited or moderate traffic but wide shoulders where one needn’t ride on the roadway, the place and time was perfect to teach my group of eight how to ride in a chain gang (double rotating pace line). It was fun and efficient. And fun.

On the ferry

3. ROOSTERS IN LUXEMBOURG. I joined old friends and met new ones riding with Rooster Racing in Luxembourg. And with Fränk Schleck.

Gusty, Barry, Fränk, Brian

2. HURRICANE MOUNTAIN ROAD. I drove to Mount Washington for the Mount Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclim but bad weather forced the cancellation of the race on Saturday and again on the rain date on Sunday. But I was able to ride up Hurricane Mountain Road (a very difficult climb) and that, in itself, was very satisfying.

Hurricane Mountain Road

1. TOUR DE SUISSE. It was to be a very fun day watching Stage 5 of the Tour de Suisse, and it was, but it turned out to be bittersweet. It was the last race for and one of the last photos taken of Gino Mäder who would die from injuries in a crash about one hour later.

Gino Mäder, in red, is drinking from a blue water bottle

What wasn’t included: The Blueridger loop in Marshall; the Abandonded Tunnel in Breezewood; my annual ride from Somerset to Punxsutawney with a stop in Northern Cambria (permanently finished); a ride to Gettysburg.

And for the rest I present these tibits:


Not even close. British Airways lost my bike at London Heathrow even while the entire time I was tracking it using an Apple AirTag. They ignored my calls and tweets for five days and blew my cycling trip to Switzlerland. CNN writer, Julia Buckley, contacted me to assist but was one day late. She still followed up with an article which I hoped would embarrass British Airlines into some small compensation. It did not. Passenger uses AirTag to track the bike his airline lost

British Airways, Heathrow Airport


Not even close. Finnair. Not only did British Airways lose my bike (later delivered) but they canceled my return leg from Helsinki – first from Helsinki to Copenhagen and then from Copenhagen to Washington-Dulles. They did nothing to reschedule me but I did get booked on Finnair from Helsinki to London. Great lounge in Helsinki and a great flight.



One week of not riding and on the day I was leaving, Ben offered me his bike to “go ride some hills.”

Ben’s Bike – Notice the Ride for Jamie sticker


On a group ride with PWCC, I dropped back with the second group because it’s all work up front and a party in the back. As we split into groups I noticed a rider in between the groups. I asked Renee who that was and she told me she was a new rider and no one knew her. So I rode up to the new rider and said “Nobody rides alone.” So glad I did. Found out Jill is a Penguins and Steelers fan from Pa.

Last Monday night ride of the year. It may have been Halloween-ish


Fosters Grille, Manassas, Va. Like Cheers, where everybody knows your name. On November 30 when I hosted a Movember ride, we all stopped for lunch and my friends were all amazed that everybody knew my name. Literally.

Suzanne, Stu, Sharon, Carla, Sean


Our last group ride of the season in Manassas. There were six of us on a chilly night. Once we hit the slight uphill of Godwin we discovered a natural break in the group. It could have been three and three or maybe four and two as four of us rode ahead to Wawa to wait and regroup. I knew that John had dropped back and I told our three to ride ahead as I would wait for John and Steve. Steve, as every man would, told the group to go one without him as he didn’t want to hold anyone up. I told him that nobody rides alone. I expected that the three of us would stay together and three would go on ahead as it was getting dark. I was astonished that all six of us stayed together and rode at the speed of Steve.


Moo-Thru, Remington, Virginia. Ideally placed next to a park where one can finish a ride and have a scoop.

Runners up: Scottish Highlands Creamery, Oxford, Md.; South Mountain Creamery, Middletown, Md.

South Mountain Creamery – Middletown, Md.
This was an oasis on a mountain ride and much needed.


I didn’t ride on New Years Day. It was the first New Years Day I didn’t ride since 2018. But it wasn’t a hangover. It was Covid. I missed the last three days in 2022 and the first three days in 2023. Six consecutive days over two years without a ride was the most that I missed since 2018 when I missed 53 straight for knee replacement.


My standard is a minimum of 10 miles to be a “ride.” Traveling with my 91-year-old mother to Florida, I found the Linn Cove Viaduct on the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina. I wanted to tell her to drive my car 10 miles then pull over and I will find her but I knew she would freak out at my suggestion. So I found a pull-off, told her I’d be right back in 5-6 minutes, and then rode over and back across the viaduct. Total miles: 1.2 (2 km)

Linn Cove Viaduct


That would be my private version of the Sea Gull Century. Total miles: 102.9 (165.6 km). Varied slightly from the official route because I started and ended at the Hampton Inn Hotel, Fruitland.

And all I got was a T-shirt


When the date was announced, Sept. 23, I knew I would have a conflict. I had a class reunion at New Brighton H.S. and a cancer charity event. I could not do both but didn’t want to miss either. My compromise was to attend the informal event the night before the reunion in New Brighton then to drive to Harrisonburg. Va. for the Gran Fondo. By splitting my time I gave both events a half effort. I regretted missing my actual reunion. I could have sent the Gran Fondo a benefit check and told them see you next year. I skipped school but immediately regretted it like I did when I was a kid (which may or may not have happened).


I met some friends at their home in Turku, Finland, and we rode 8.6 miles (13.8 km) to the center of Turku and back. We rode with their seven-year-old daughter, Sara, who was amazing. We didn’t go fast but this was one of my best rides of the year – Traveling at the speed of Sara. — 7.6 mph (12.2 kph)

Sara and mom


I found the flat streets in Corolla, North Carolina, to my liking, combined with few stops signs. When I couldn’t go on long rides on vacation because we had family with us, short faster rides were best for me. On Wednesday I rode 11 miles (17.7 km) at 20.2 mph (32.5 kph). And on our last evening before everyone left I went out at 6:30 p.m. and rode 21.7 mph (35 kph) over 4.1 miles (6.6 km). That was my fastest ever speed measured over distance. Solo. And not involving a descent. I’ve gone faster over longer distances but always involving some mountain descending. This was all human-powered.

Long (3 miles) streets in Corolla


House in the Alps, Switzerland. No heating but it had a fireplace – that I couldn’t figure out how to open the door on it. I froze and was hungry. I had brought Pop Tarts as gifts for my friends in Finland but ended up eating them to survive. I came here to ride my bike but had no bike to ride. The views were stunning but no bike. I spent one night then moved on to Lake Lucerne which was very comforting and what I needed.

House in the Alps


For many riders a major achievement is a Metric Century. The Century is 100 of something and in metric terms that is 100 kilometers or 62.14 miles. This year I had 27 rides of a metric century distance including at least one in every month of the year.

Strava Trophy Case


And forget the metric century and go “full.” I rode three centuries this year. Two were registered events, the MS-150 in Florida and the Intracoastal Waterway, and the third, the Sea Gull Century, I was registered but I rode one day early to beat the weather.

The MS-150, Championsgate, Fla.


Only 10 states and one district. Here’s the short list: Virginia. Maryland. West Virginia. Pennsylvania. Florida. Delaware. North Carolina. New Hampshire. Massachusetts, Maine. District of Columbia.

My one trip into D.C. was to ride the last 30 miles on the C&O Canal Towpath with my
brother-in-law and sister. They rode from Pittsburgh over six days.


In addition to the U.S.A. I rode in six other countries this year. I in Switzerland, not on my bike but one lent to me by Ben. And the rest in order, Luxembourg, France, Germany, The Netherlands, and Finland.

Near Valkenburg, Holland


With an all-day forecast of rain for the Sea Gull Century on Saturday, perfect sunny weather on Friday, plus cheaper weekday rates, I decided to go to Salisbury one day early and I rode the Sea Gull Century by myself. I was also able to find the horses on Assateague Island. Often they are moved to the southern end to avoid the crowds of this event.

Assateague Island


This is not a good thing. My Whoop band measures recovery but on June 17 it measured my recovery at one percent. I assume that it doesn’t go to zero. This was an accumulation of sleep deprivation and stress. I flew to Zurich but my bike stayed in London. I was checking on it and tweeting every few hours. I wasn’t sleeping well. The day before I took a train to Frankfurt then met some of the Roosters Racing team. My bike was supposedly in transit to Luxembourg. But stress effects recovery and it caught up to me here.

1% Recovery – Not good


Strava says that out of more than 95,000,000, I was in the Top One Percent of all users for activity, measured in hours. Maybe I’m slow, that’s all.

Top 1%


Missing for one week in Europe, my bike and I met up again in Luxembourg.


It’s my second year of wearing my Whoop Band and I am still learning. Amount and quality of sleep effects recovery. But so does mental stress. When my bike was missing while I was in Switzerland I never had a recovery that was normal. Once the bike was returned to me my recovery improved.

On none of these days did I ride the day before
Recovery was in part due to sleep or lack thereof
but mostly due to stress of my bike missing


Showed up for a Thursday night ride and the group leader had no clue who I was but still determined there would be a fast group and a slow group then pointed to me to say that I would be in the slow group. Very rude. I rode on the front or second wheel for much of the ride until I came to my bail out point. Then I rode back to him and put my hand on his shoulder. When I got his attention (a trick I learned from Frank), I told him that I did not appreciate that at all. He stammered and tried to say mistaken identity but it was rude no matter what. I never went back.


At Olivia’s Ride on June 9 in Ashland, Va., I saw USA Cycling Women’s Road Champion (2022), Emma Langley, riding away. Although I was wearing flip flops, I jumped on my road bike and caught her and, with permission, took a selfie.

Emma Langley, USA Women’s Road Cycling Champion


On Christmas Eve I went for a ride with Tim. The roads were wet when I started so I put the Ass Saver on my bike. I did not lock it into place as it was being difficult. When we got to Manassas, I noticed it missing. Rather than finish a loop Tim suggested we double back and try to find it. We did. We didn’t. I miss you. 🙁

A cute temporary fender. More temporary than I expected.


Four days from June 12-15 when British Airways lost my bike at Heathrow Airport. Have I mentioned this before? Spanning 2022 and 2023 it was six days without a ride from December 29, 2022 – January 3, 2023 when I was sick. During those four days in Switzerland I had to see views like this:

Lake Lucerne – Ferry from Beckenried to Gersau
Didn’t get to ride this as planned but I got to see it.


Eighty days from July 5 through September 22. September 23 was a chilly rainy day in Harrisonburg, Va. and our ride with Jeremiah Bishop was canceled. If I had a longer streak going I would have ridden in the rain and got soaked but my bike and body thanked me for taking a day off. I doubt that I ever ride 1,103 days again like I did from 2019-2021.


First day of riding with the Roosters in Luxembourg, I went on a 20-mile ride before our 48-mile group ride. I was also one week off the bike because, British Airways. Our last climb before lunch at a vineyard, I started cramping. I had to back off the pace and let the group gap me. Fränk Schleck saw me, doubled back and then rode beside me with his hand on my saddle pushing me up the climb.

Julie and Barry at lunch, Schengen, Luxembourg
Feeling better after a puch up the climb – SMH
Photo Credit: Lisa W.


I smelled smoke at first thinking a truck must have really laid down some rubber. As I turned the corner next to Colgan High School I could see lots of black smoke about 200 meters ahead. And then I could see the fire. I was right next to the Coles Fire Department so I dismounted and rang the doorbell. When a firefighter came to the door I told him “There’s a truck on fire at Hoadly and 234 – you all may want to come out and play.” One firefighter jogged out to the street, looked, and then ran back inside. Within 60 seconds four doors on the building were opened and at least three trucks went to put out the fire. You’re welcome. Surely a 911 call had been made before I went to the fire station. Why such a lag in response?

Truck on fire – Va. Rte 234 (Dumfries Road and Hoadly Road)


Weather for Mount Washington for the MWARBH on August 19. Sixty one mph winds, 39.9℉ (4.4℃), with a wind chill of 26℉ (-3.3℃) and more than one inch of rain. In addition to the bad weather, four people had to be rescued off the mountain the day before and emergency services were thin. It was the right call.


Is there really a best gravel? But I enjoyed this winter club ride in Fauquier County, Va. Except for the gravel.

Gravey winery


On August 30 I rode 30 miles on the C&O Canal Towpath to meet my sister and brother-in-law. Much of the C&O is simply forest but one of the prettiest sections is near Great Falls.

Great Falls


Uh-oh. On my Currituck Ferry ride I unexpectedly found 2 1/4 miles (3.6 km) of heavy gravel in North Carolina. No flats. No mechanicals. No crashes. All good.

Gravel. Not my friend.


Mount Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hillclimb. The Hart’s Turkey Farm dinner used to be a real highlight of the hillclimb. Five hundred riders (staggered) under one tent and a delicious turkey dinner that rivals Grandma’s best Thanksgiving dinner. Sadly, that has given way to a sandwich. 🙁

Wait. Looks like ham.


If I could have a ferry on every ride I would. The Historic White’s Ferry at Leesburg remains closed. I missed planned rides on Lake Zurich and Lake Lucerne. But I was still able ride the Bellevue-Oxford Ferry in Maryland three times and the Knotts Island Ferry in North Carolina, once. It’s no coincidence that two of my top ten rides include a ferry ride.

Currituck Ferry arriving Knotts Island, N.C.


Covered bridges are cool. I usually hit up to eight of them in Bedford Co., Pa. and did go back to the three great ones in Frederick Co., Md. I found Jacksons Mills Covered Bridge near Breezewwod and then found Kings Covered Bridge in Somerset Co., Pa.

Kings Covered Bridge, Somerset Co., Pa.


In October while I was on a ride in Florida I was pretty excited to see a guy that I rode with for six days in Luxembourg in June with Rooster Racing. When I greeted him he had no clue who I was.

Keith from the Roosters Although we rode in a group of nine for six days in Luxembourg four months ago – he did not remember me


Nobody should hear those words “You’ve got cancer.” When I heard them in 2009 I wanted (1) to live and (2) to ride again. I never tracked miles much before 2008 or 2009 when bike computers became readily available and have no idea how far I have ridden in my lifetime. But after cancer, which is a new lease on life, I know every mile. And on July 24 I went over 100,000 miles cancer-free.


Somewhere in Fauquier County, Virginia

Warrenton, Va., Jan. 20, 2023


But still SHARE THE ROAD (Bikes may use full lane)

Lake Wales, Fla. Mar. 18, 2023


Almost every moment on a Roosters Racing trip. But the funniest was at our first team meeting. Danny had everybody stand up. “Now sit down if you have shaved legs.” All the women and the majority of men sat down. For those who didn’t, – BUFFALO! (Rufas shaved his legs that night.)

Danny holding Buffalo court


Late in the season I rode to Manassas for a group ride and came home in the dark. Then on Halloween I started out at 6:45 a.m. in Altamonte Springs, Fla. It was dark and misty. And my lights work. Two years ago I was almost hit at night in a parking lot in South Carolina. Has a pleasant conversation with an apologetic driver who told me he didn’t see my lights. I believed him and upgraded my visibility. Still don’t want to go far in the dark but I am comfortable for an hour or so if I have to.

Warm and misty


These don’t come along often, in fact they are very rare, but on our last day in Luxembourg, our support driver, Jean-Claude passed three of us and waited to see what would happen. I jumped on his wheel but Paul, and riding with me, did not. Jean-Claude sped up and I sped up. We passed a few riders on that ride. We both greatly enjoyed this little used trick by cyclists. When we caught the front group, JC was beaming with delight.


On September 16, I started a Metric Century ride with only 42% charge on my Wahoo. (User error.) That would have been enough but I had a 90-minute pause to watch a softball game. If I turned off the Wahoo it would have created a ride and when I resumed I would have had a second ride. I could have joined the rides together later. I decided to ride as far as I could until it shut down. At that point I would have turned on my phone app and recorded the second part and then joined those two if it came to that. No need. I pulled into Mod Pizza in Purcellville and before I ordered asked if they had a USB-C charger. They did. I went from 3% charge when I pulled in to 50% when I left. Saved the day.

Mod Pizza, Purcelleville, Va.


Because it was a documentary, Schleck vs. Contador, I had just watched, Tour de France Winner (2011), Andy Schlect, asked me who was better, him or Alberto Contador. Hmm. How to answer honestly. “You?,” I asked/said.

Andy chuckled and said, “No, he was the better rider but I’m the better person.”

And to this I whole-heartedly agree.

Andy and Barry


10,071 miles – fifth straight year of 10,000+ miles. The first time, 2019, was the most rewarding because I had never reached 10,000 before. But this year started with COVID and was interrupted in Europe with a missing bike. There were periods of doubt but as the end of year got closer I knew I could finish the year on a positive note.


There is a slight discrepany on distance between the two fitness tracking programs, Strava and RideWithGPS. My Wahoo uploads the same data points to both programs and if they aren’t exact they are usually within 0.1 miles. But over 10,000 miles there can be slight differences. I’m not worried. I have a much longer history as a RideWithGPS user so I defer to their data for my annual mileage. The difference in mileage, 10,074 v 10,071 is due to some walking that was also recorded in Strava.



I was excited when I captured my first KOM (King of the Mountain) a couple of years ago. Then I chased them. Now I longer chase them – if they happen, they happen. Also, I try to give more Kudos than I receive.

I may have to start giving kudos to indoor rides and weight lifting to even out the kudo discrepancy

And that’s a wrap on another year. No spills, crashes, or falls although I came upon one crash in Olivia’s Ride, Ben King’s retirement ride on June 10. For a year of safe riding, I am very thankful. Ride safe my friends!

Intracoastal Waterway Century


Quick Thoughts – The registration process stated that the event materials including a T-shirt would be mailed to the riders. I registered two months in advance but never received anything. I had to arrive early today for late registration ready to explain that I never received anything. Turns out they didn’t mail mine. Sigh.

A t-shirt and my riding bib/tag

I met a nice young woman who was sitting on the curb 15 minutes before the start time. I convinced her to sit on a bench with me and save her legs. Kristen Reynolds was riding her first Metric Century and was a bit nervous about being able to finish.

Waiting at the start

Part of me wanted to ride with Kristen to make sure she would finish but I decided to stick with my plan of a full Century ride. At just about 8:00 we all started moving. The event had around 400 riders so it wasn’t too large, unlike a Sea Gull Century which has more than 5,000 riders.

Early morning Start line

As I rolled out I recognized one of our Roosters from this summer’s trip to Luxembourg. I rode up to Keith but he didn’t know who I was. Strange. Very strange. I rode with Keith for the first 15 miles even catching Kristen who was flying. I was surprised that the split in the two routes came so quickly. I never really said goodbye to Keith or Kristen. They turned right. I turned left. Goodbye.

Keith from the Roosters
Although we rode in a group of nine for six days in Luxembourg four months ago – he did not remember me

I turned west on the Century route while a large group I was in went east for the Metric. I was the only one who turned left. I thought I would be riding the rest of the century alone. I was prepared to ride alone. In one mile was the first rest stop. I made a quick pit stop and noticed a group of 5-6 guys getting a group photo taken. I left. Solo.

Rest stop one

After departing the stop I may have ridden one mile, at most two, catching one rider when the group I saw minutes earlier passed me by. One rider announced they were passing and told me to jump in. Another said, “Jump in, take a rest and recover, and then take a turn.” I liked the invitation.

Rolling at the start – Cocoa Beach

After the group passed me I jumped in. I had to judge what type of rotation or pace line they were riding and match it. We went in order with each person pulling off when they were comfortable. There were a couple of short pulls and a couple of long pulls. Their group of five became a group of six. As we passed other riders we grew to about 20 with the six of us doing all the pulling with 14 passengers. There were riders willing to tag on but not become part of our group.

Rest stop two

The composition of the group changed when we came to the NASA Causeway Bridge to the Kennedy Space Center. I was at the back hoping to take some photos. When I ride I love to take photos. Sometimes I can do it while riding solo but more often I pull over for a shot. Today I was in a line most of the way and could not capture the views to share with others.

Eau Gallie Causeway
Dr. W. J. Creel Bridge

It was flat. Everywhere was flat. But the causeways all were bridges that became hills for those in this area. We came to the “hill” on the NASA Causeway. There was a split in our group and I found myself on the back of the split. I quickly moved past one or two riders to catch the front of our group.

Every ride needs a Velomobile

Coming down off the bridge we had a great view of the space center to the left across the Indian River and a canal to the right. I saw an alligator in the canal but could not take a photo.

Rest stop two

At the end of the causeway, our group pulled over realizing they dropped Walter. One rider doubled back about one-half mile to see if he was coming but didn’t find him. I later learned that Walter had been off his bike for three years and jumped in today to ride 100 miles. Dumb if that’s what he did. The group waited about 10-12 minutes and then continued on without him.

Baby Cokes at Rest Stop 4. These were a life saver.

Walter apparently abandoned and presumably called for a SAG. But no one in our group called him? Maybe they knew him but weren’t necessarily friends with him much as I would be in the Prince William Cycling group. I know a lot of people but I’m not friends with most or have their cell phone numbers. Poor Walter.

Kennedy Space Center

Around Mile 60, Herb and I were at the front and we caught another group. In doing so we dropped the other three riders we were with. I was willing to hang on the back of the new group after pulling so much but Herb suggested we wait for his group because “they need us more than we need a free ride.” We waited.

Rest stop 3

Leaving the third rest stop I wanted to ride faster. And it was a weird situation that I joined a group and rode 45 miles with them but was ready to abandon them. Is that wrong? Twice when their riders were hurting the group stopped so I did too. I was part of the group. But to ride a century the advice is to ride the first third slow, the second third normal, and leave yourself enough in the tank for the last third. I did.

On Merritt Island – the Indian River

Today I had lots in the tank and wanted to pick up the pace. Every time I was on the front I was constantly looking to see if someone was on my wheel. And often it was one rider with a split. Sometimes it was just me. I slowed down.

Bridge on Merritt Island

At what point do you become part of the group and can’t leave? I could have pedaled away at any point, with or without a word. But I stayed with the group taking turns pulling with those still working.

Rest stop 5

In the end, we finished together except for Jim who dropped back with three miles to go. And I know Tom appreciated I was pulling my share in the group when he couldn’t contribute. After the ride, he thanked me for pulling. He said he doesn’t normally ride that fast and was just trying to hang on but was very pleased with his average speed for the day. I didn’t tell him that I was always slowing it down to keep them with us.

Indian Harbor Beach – Eau Gallie Causeway

It was a good day. I started slow to stay in with the Metric riders until they turned. Then I thought I had 85 miles of solo riding ahead of me. The Melbourne Old Cranks (my new name for them) made the ride very interesting and enjoyable. I don’t know how many they had passed and how large of a group they wanted. But they invited me to work with them and that clearly saved my energy. And I was the only one who joined them.

Rest stop 5

Never say never. I thought this would be a one-and-done ride and it probably was. But I already drew a new route for my personal century ride if I would do this again. I’d follow the Metric ride back to finish, cross the causeway at Cocoa Village then pick up the Century route. It would mean four causeways instead of two, only two miles that are “off course” (crossing the causeway at Cocoa) and a new distance of 107 miles. Sounds awesome. Maybe I’ll be back. I would like that.


I monitor my biometrics with the Whoop Band. Without fail, my recovery the night before a big event is always in the red. Today was no exception.

Take it easy. Don’t ride too far today. Yea, right.

I think the mental aspect affects the physical recovery. It’s not like I stayed up all night worrying but just knowing a big effort is required seems to effect me.

Bad slice

At the Eau Gallie Causeway, I heard a piece of metal being hit and landing. It has a distinctive sound. I also knew it was me. I thought for sure that I would have a flat within the next 30-60 seconds but I survived that. Unbeknownst to me was I had a slice in the tire. We were at Mile 79 and had 21 miles to go. None the wiser, I rode on the slice back to the finish line. Pretty impressed by those Continental 5000s.

I should have pulled over and inspected it. Although I had an extra tire with me in my car, I didn’t carry it with me on the ride. I really had no choice regardless. Ride and hope. And carry the SAG number in case I had to stop.

If there was any question as to whether I was part of the group and therefore should not have left them it is this. Jim gave me a shoutout on his Strava (although I’m not from Roanoke).

It was windy. But most of the route was north-south and the winds were consistently ENE, in other words, crosswinds.

I’m still learning Windsock but this graphic shows the wind direction. Crosswinds. It also looks like there was a two-minute penalty for the wind which I guess means with no wind I would have finished two minutes sooner. That seems low to me but it’s fun to think about.

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