This past Saturday I completed my first ever century. My previous best was 83 miles 4 weeks earlier, so I was pretty sure I had 100 in me.
I was really hoping to have a good story to tell when all was said and done, but riding the century didn't seem any more spectacular than any other ride, just longer.
One of my favorite parts of the ride was watching all the clouds. Despite the sheer number of them, they never seemed to block the sun. Good thing I remembered the sun screen.
I think I saw about 4 deer the whole day, which was 2x the number of bikes I saw. This guy was the only one who wanted to pose.
One of the best parts of living here.
After 20 miles of pavement I got to hit the gravel. For the first couple of miles the gravel was thick and loose. I debated turning around and going a different way, but I was pretty certain the county wouldn't put down fresh gravel along the entire 18 or so miles. Luckily I was right. It got much better (and faster) soon enough. I just wish the 10-20 mph headwind wouldn't have lasted the entire 25 miles that I was going west.
As per usual, I had to stop and take a picture of the Trucker on a bridge.
I decided to go with 3 water bottles today (96 oz total). There aren't a lot of places around here to get water. I didn't get to a store until mile 70.
At one point the sun had a halo. I don't think I've seen one in the summer before.
They don't make bridges like this anymore.
Back at mile 50 I decided to forget the century and just ride straight home. By the time I crossed this bridge at mile 63 I had changed my mind and decided to go for it. It's amazing what a nice tailwind will do to improve your outlook on things.
In order to get to 100 miles I had to go 4 extra miles out and back on a side road before hitting the final stretch home. Just after turning back around (into about a 30 mph wind) it started to rain. Needless to say, I was not happy. Fortunately the rain only lasted a few miles and I was rewarded with a rainbow to accompany me during the last few minutes of daylight.
The final tally.
I've reached a milestone that I've been aiming at for a couple of years.
I'm glad I finally got it out of my system. Now I can just ride to ride.
I can just go where the road takes me.
(at least till the double metric century bug bites)