Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Cycle Oregon 2011 recap

Welcome to Salem!
I am suffering from a loss of words to describe the weekend we had. Simply said, it rained. Most of the time it rained....BUT before it rained there was the sprinkler.

We had just settled into our tent for the evening and within a half hour or so the sprinklers popped on. So at a regular interval, our tent was being watered. Not knowing how long the sprinkler would be one, Tom decided to "fix" the problem and tied a trash bag over the sprinkler head.

AAAAHHH....no more sprinkler.

THEN - it started to rain...not long after the sprinkler incident. It's hard to say how much time went by. The rain was pretty constant throughout the rest of the evening. Into the morning hours.

Oh, if we weren't awake enough...there was the TRAIN.

Lost count of how many trains went by Friday night but we know that it was more than one train.


So, yeah...sprinkler, rain and trains...great start to our weekend away from the 'Couve at a Cycle Oregon event.

Morning rolls around and low and behold...it's not raining - much. So we got up, ate breakfast and got ready to ride.

Before we arrived we had decided to ride the mid-distance route of 43-ish miles. It was a pretty nice route, only one steep section mid-way through, that took a whole lot of effort to turn the pedals over and pretty fast finish back to the university. Lunch was at the Oregon Gardens and an ODS rest stop at the Willamette Valley Fruit Company. After we arrived at Willamette University we got cleaned up and hung out until dinner time. There's a coffee shop on campus, so we found ourselves enjoying a cup of coffee and watching the afternoon rain and reading. Dinner was pretty good.

Pork Carnitas, Garden Salad and Mexican rice
After dinner we went decided to rest for a while and then made our way back to the Main Stage. Where we heard the announcements for the evening, saw the bike camp kiddos on their bikes and listened to the musical duo of Stoddard and Cole...a little music and little comedy...good times.

Announcements, announcement...announcements!

We both had better rest on Saturday night - thanks to Tylenol PM! And I think there was only one train that evening, the sprinklers were turned off in our area, but it did start raining again some time a couple of hours after we went to sleep (guessing).

Day 2 wasn't nearly as enjoyable. We went from planning to ride all the way to Champoeg Park (75 miles) to  just to riding to Willamette Mission State Park for lunch (35 miles) to making the final decision at the first rest stop to just do the short route (a whopping 24 miles.) It rained and rained and rained...oh, it was also windy. So, yeah...not so great of a day.
Wet and unhappy.
We got back to Salem and started packing up our stuff into the car and showered. Before we left we made sure to have lunch. We were home by 1:30 Sunday afternoon.

Overall, it was nice to get away from our reality for a couple of nights. The past couple of years were so great - but you just never know what the weather will do, especially this year. We learn to just roll with what comes.

A couple of extra shots for fun...

A field of Daisies!
A much happier Tom on Saturday evening.
A mini tune-up by the one and only - Grand Fromage, Jay Graves of Bike Gallery
Waiting...come on Jay!

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