Friday, July 18, 2008

From Snaggy Mtn

Put your lungs back in your chest ride!
Friday's ride July 18, 2008

21.4 miles loop starting and ending at the house on Snaggy Mountain,
9.7 miles avg, 2800 ft altitude gain (that is many Lystras)

Tracy says it's her favorite ride!

To view the photos from Friday's ride click on picture below.

Snaggy Mtn July 2008

ON Saturday July 19th the Rose's went Shopping

Ron Clanton and Kevin Smit Rode a section of the Blue Ridge Parkway.
They starting north of highway 18 just south of the Virgina Boarder.
They then rode south to a turn around point at the Traiding post were they stopped for a Nehi Orange Soda. In total they rode 24 miles with 2,100 ft of climbing at 15 mph average speed.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Roses grow stronger and How to Categorize the climbs July 12 and 13

Roses grow stronger
Saturday July 12
Lots of new riders
In attendance riding with the Roses
Tracy Clanton
Beth Gonzalez
Dani Devinney – new to the group
Stacy Edwards
Stacy (blond Stacy) still can’t remember her last name.
Theresa Smit

Riding with the “Testosterone” riders – now known as the Thorns (ladies are now riding with the group and doing very well). There were 13 Thorns but only 12 accounted for below. Unable to recall who is not in this list.

Ron Clanton
Brain Farkus
Steve Ham….. who rode to the start
Steve Simpson – new to the group
Eric – Blond Stacy’s husband – riding the first time with this group ( he was also with the lady who was run off the road deliberately by a car a couple of weeks ago – it was in the news)
Ernest Davis – rode to the start
Coach Dotson
Steve Sparano
Deborah Strickland – new to the group
Jerry Strickland – new to the group
Mary Gilbert – New to the group
Kevin Smit

Lots of introductions were made as there was 6 riders joining the group for the first time. Kevin provided a brief (for him) explanation of what might transpire on the ride and how the group works to ensure no one is dropped.

After that delay Ron Clanton was seen getting very anxious as he made it known the ride had already missed the official start time.

The pack of riders slowly assembled and rolled out of the parking lot. Kevin and others were expecting a more relaxed ride than Normal.

Even though the group had several of the hammer heads in Coach, Ernest, and Steve Ham…, the group was missing the catalysts for attacks. Steve Cope, Mr. Bridenbaugh, Tim Travitz, and Todd Pechner were not on the days ride. The mix of hammer heads was not at full force for the days ride. The usual instigators and associated attackers mix was somewhat watered down.

The 19 riders all swung into the Preston Woods neighborhood with the splinter between Thorns and Roses taking place at the usual climb up to Davis drive.
The group continued at an easy pace thru the round about and onto the back roads behind Green Hope High School.
The right turn onto Carpenter Upchurch Road – also known as Ron’s Pull – had the group assembling automatically into a well organized Draft line with Ron at his honored position at the Pull Position. All the riders demonstrated the proper respect for this rider who has consistently pulled the pack along this stretch of road. This respect was so intense that the new riders picked up immediately on what was taking place and each fell in line to benefit from the solid performance of Ron as he powered the group down the road at a steady 21 + miles an hour on this 2 ½ mile stretch of road. There were no attacks and no trash talk, just a smooth well formed peloton lead by Ron Clanton.
This was starting off to be a smooth day’s ride.

The group navigated the short section of road that ended with the left turn onto Carpenter Fire Station with all making it safely over the rail road tracks and around the many pot holes prior to the stop light at Highway 54. Once through the light the group again assembled a draft line, however this time it was lead by two riders with others falling into place in one of the two draft lines. Traffic was light allowing this double draft line to prevail all the way to Yates Store and the ensuing attack on UP-Chuck. The pull was provided by several riders as they took turns in the pull position. Those helping the peloton included Steve Ham…, Kevin Smit, Eric, Steve Simpson, Ernest Davis, Steve Sparano, Coach, and Ron Clanton. As this double draft line reached the area of Gary Glen Kevin recognized a lone riders headed in the opposite direction. It took Kevin too long to respond to be able to shout out the riders name in recognition. It was Dan Bartus one of the original Ride organizes for this group. He has not ridden with the group for at least 2 full seasons. He has recently moved closer to the start and now has NO EXCUSE not to join the Saturday and Sunday morning rides. We will expect to see him one of these next weekends.
The group slowed slightly as each rider had to scatter and find their own path on the short 50 yards of road that is in total disrepair just before the newer roads of the housing developments on Yates Store and Carpenter Fire Station road. This poorly maintained road is a risk to all bike riders with many cars thrown in the mix. Speculation has it that this 50 yards of road has yet to be annexed by Cary from Morrisville and neither wants to spend money to repair it.
Safely through that section of the road all riders now sat up on their bikes, stretched backs, consumed water, and coasted in anticipation of the turn onto Yates Store road and the run at Up-Chuck. As each rider relaxed Ernest slipped passed putting himself out in front. With the pack swinging thru the left turn Ernest was seen standing on the peddles in and effort to catapult towards the down hill in preparation for the 11 percent climb that is affectionately known as UP-Chuck hill. Steve Ham… also launched himself into the down hill run to build all the momentum possible. Coach, and Brain Farkus, aligned themselves for the attack with expectations of taking the stage win away from Ernest. Steve Sparano, and Ron Clanton each responded to the challenge and called upon their experience with Up-Chuck to ensure they had the proper gear selection to best respond to the start of the climb. The others were deliberately holding back not fully aware of what Up-Chuck was and how best to meet its challenge.
Ernest had generated an insurmountable gap. This however did not deter Brian, and Coach from making a solid attack in an effort to clip Ernest’s wings at the summit. Ernest did survive the attack from behind and was the first to the turn after the hill. The thorns were strung out with each doing their best to accept the challenge that this hill provides each and every time for all who attempt the climb.

One by one the Thorns crested the hill and rolled into the right hand turn onto New Hope Church Road. This road has been recently paved. Its smooth surface allows for efficient wheel rotations resulting in the pack working much like the cars in a roller coaster with each car to rushing down into the trough followed by a slow motion glide over the crest of the next hill on the ride.

Left turn onto Mount Pisgah and its rough road and 3 successive climbs, each one steeper than the last, kept the group scattered until the end of the last climb and associated left turn onto Earnest Jones Road.
Earnest Jones Road is a relatively flat section that is used to regroup and recoup. The pace on this section usually falls into the low teens as each rider works to lower their heart rates, deal with sweat management, draw as much oxygen into the system as their VO2 ability allows for.

A right turn onto Luter Shop had the group assembling into a well organized draft line with Ernest and Coach setting the pace. These two riders do not look back and assume someone is always there. After less than a mile the pace line now had two riders in the lead with the Peloton now formed behind, with others taking turns in the Pull position. The pack was not willing to match Coach and Ernest’s idea of a comfortable pace so the collective worked to dial in a pace that reached 20 mph and retained all riders in tow. This collective continued to work well together with several taking turns at the pull position, just like on the Tour.

At 751 the group made the right turn and formed a single file allowing for the increase in car traffic. This was quickly followed by the left turn onto Martha Chapel Road and the 3 to 4 mile run down it’s slope to Lake Jordan. This section of road is smooth and allows for the group to reach the highest sustained speeds of the day. It also usually ends with a short sprint to the end of the road as if the Green Jersey was up for grabs. We have one account of a rider’s heart rate hitting 200 bpm as they exploded to the line to claim victory of the points provided on that section of road for the coveted Green Jersey. Today’s ride was no different.
The early stage of the run had the pack working to stay together with individuals taking short turns at the pull position. The pace increased slowly climbing and then held in the mid to upper 20’s . As the pace touched 26 miles per hour the pack began to disintegrate with one rider falling off the back followed shortly by another and then another. Those participating in the sprint included, Coach, Ernest, Steve Ham…, Steve Simpson, Eric, and Brain Farkus.

The group now took the right turn onto Farrington headed towards Lystra with a planned rest stop at the gas station located there. The group worked single file as they crossed over Lake Jordan on the bridge and climbed at speeds of 17 mph up the hill towards the rest stop.
At the rest stop each rider was already making note of the distance traveled so far and the average speed to accomplish. Oddly enough the group was in line with some of the better days ride paces even without the speed play and attacks normally generated by the hammer heads. This suggests that well organized draft lines generate the same results and are more efficient than lots of attacks and associated responses.

Ron Clanton bought a gallon of water to replenish his water bottles. He offered the rest to anyone in the group that needed some. All took advantage of Ron’s Generosity. Ron also informed everyone that the Gallon of water was the same price as a 24 oz. bottle of designer water also sold in the store. Good to know next time we stop to replenish water bottles there.

While the group rested the discussion topic touched briefly on the fact that Lystra and its climb was just down the road. Some in the group made it know they had never done that climb. Coach was grinning from ear to ear and laughed recognizing that last time we were here he egged everyone into making the climb.
The group elected to NOT attempt the climb today.
All mounted bikes and headed back down Farrington in the direction they had just traveled prior to the rest stop.
Ron Clanton took the pull position with all others falling in line as ducklings behind their mother. Kevin was in second position in anticipation of moving to the front once the group arrived at “Kevin’s Crawl”. Ron pulled the entire way to the intersection of Farrington and Martha Chapel. This intersection is the beginning of “Kevin’s Crawl”, that part of Farrington with a gradual slope leaving Lake Jordan area and heading towards High Way 64 and any of the left hand turns that would take the group towards home.
Kevin slid into his honored position and worked to keep the pack together while also looking to increase the pace on this uphill pull. The pack responded to the gradual increase in pace with the peloton cresting the climb at 21 mph.
A turn onto Horton Pond had the group all commenting on how they were able to respond to the increase in speed on the uphill section. The group did not reassemble as Horton Pond is a 3 or 4 mile section of road that has rolling hills and a rough service. Each rider uses this section of road for their own needs. Some use the hills as speed play, some use Horton Pond to recover and refuel. Horton Pond continues straight ending at a T intersection on 751.
A right turn onto 751 and immediate left onto Luther now has the group preparing for a hard charging ride all the way to the next T intersection at Green Level. Steve Ham… set him self up for his attack on the only down hill portion of this road. Ernest, Coach, Brian, and Steve Sparano all attacked the first and steepest climb of the section of road. The others all responded in an effort to see what was about to unfold. Kevin was happy to bring up the rear.
Luther is a very deceiving section of road. Once the first hill is accomplished the rest of the road appears to be fairly flat, however it is a steady climb around each curve all the way to Green level. Kevin has never been able to ride this section of road comfortably, usually resulting in being the last one to the T intersection. Today’s ride was no exception.

All the Thorns were already circling at the T intersection in an effort to again allow the pack to regroup. Kevin was slowly approaching the group with a car following close behind. The group anticipated a right turn and run towards Cary. Kevin had other ideas.
With out slowing any more Kevin rolled into the intersection and made a sharp left hand turn just as the car that was following him came to a stop at the intersection. The car was now blocking all the riders from making the left turn to follow Kevin.
“HEY you CHEETER” yelled Coach who was blocked from making pursuit.
Kevin had maneuvered himself into a large gap as he continued to push down the road while everyone else was still stalled at the intersection.

This section of road had a fast down hill followed by a three step climb to the T intersection at Luter Shop. Kevin was joined by the hammer heads just prior to Luter Shop. A right turn onto Luter had the hammer heads not slowing in order to make sure they would not be blocked by an trick maneuvers.

Kevin circled in the intersection to ensure all rider’s knew to make the right turn.
Luter Shop is another long stretch of road with several small inclines and at least one potential directional option at White Oak Church Road. The Hammer Heads all formed a nice tight pack with the intent to see who they could splinter off. The others formed a pace line and worked towards not letting the gap of the two groups grow too much. The Hammer Heads slowed as they approached White Oak allowing Kevin to bark out the direction “Straight, Straight” was his directive.

With a sudden surge the Hammer Heads made a more concerted effort to splinter off anyone they could. The gap between the two groups was no longer sustainable.
The next opportunity for a turn was at Yates Store and found the Hammer Heads again waiting for the instructions of what way to go. Kevin signaled a left using the NCDOT proper hand signals.
“Are we doing Up-Chuck in reverse?” Steve Sparano inquired.
“No we well do the hills of Cary Glenn” Kevin replied.
“I hate those hills more than Up-Chuck” Steve Sparano wined.
“I know” Kevin grinned.
A sweeping right turn into the Cary Glenn neighborhood had the group all aligning themselves for the fast down hill and 3 climbs that would unfold before them.
The first climb is accomplished with 4/5th of the climb accomplished from momentum of the previous down hill run. The second hill requires power to the peddles on the last 1/3 of the climb, the last and longest climb requires effort from the bottom thru the two tiered climb.
A left turn followed by a quick right had the group back on Carpenter Fire Station Road. The Hammer Heads clearly knew their way home. Pointing their noses into the wind they challenged each other to try and take the lead away, battling for position over and over with each attack. The Peloton was no longer able to form with each rider doing their best to finish the last 5 or 6 miles to the start/finish.
The Thorns covered 41 miles at 17.1 mph average. Everyone completed the day with a feeling of accomplishment and a promise from those new to the group that they would return another day.
The Roses completed the same 41 mile route at a 14.4 mph average will all Roses feeling good about their effort for the day.

Sunday July 13th.
Roses Rule.
How to Categorize the climbs

In attendance were
Theresa Smit
Sheila Augustine – rode to the start
Mary Ann – rode to the start
Doug Augustine – catching the ride outside of the Preston Woods neighborhood
Nicole Lewis – rode to the start and is Patty’s daughter ( Patty melt – 27 mph on Martha chapel last weekend)
Steve Sparano
Barb Hartsfield
Andy Hartsfield
Tom Plant – rode to the start
Kevin Smit
John Majikes – rode to the start
The group was later joined by two riders who jumped in as the pack rode thru the roads of Cary Glenn. They were Steve Lewis, and Jason Hammer (very appropriate name).

The route was to follow most of Saturday’s ride with an alternate finish that eliminated several hills and miles of riding. The pack started off as it always does by swinging into the Preston Woods neighborhood. The group climbed the first hill and arrived at the light at Davis drive almost in tact. Kevin and 3 others jumped across the road rather than wait for the red light. The pack behind was unable to ford the divide due to traffic that was swooping down on the intersection. Kevin and the others slowed to allow for the delay by the pack. This lead group made it to the round-a-bout first and began to slowly follow the curve on the outside just as the pack was making the turn to short cut the round-a-bout by taking the inside path.
“Cheaters” John Majikes was shouting as the pack made the turn off of the round-a-bout in front of the leaders. This maneuver allowed the entire group to recollect itself. The pack was able to form a double draft line in short order as they rode the back roads leading to “Ron’s Pull”.
A right turn onto Carpenter UpChurch Road (Ron’s Pull) had the group still working to sustain a well organized double draft line. Those setting the pace included Steve Sparano, John Majikes, Tom Plant, and Kevin as each rotated in and out of the pull position. The pace along this section did not match the normal pull provided by Ron but it did allow the pack to remain well organized while reaching speeds of 19 mph.
The turn onto Carpenter Fire Station road had the pack splitting, allowing each rider to manage the rail road tracks and pot holes as the road reached Highway 55. The light at 55 held up the pack with most unclipping from the peddles while some attempted a track Stand in anticipation of the Red turning to Green. “Yellow” announced Kevin just as he was about to unclip. The pack synchronized the light change with the action of snapping back into their peddles. On Green the group launched themselves thru the intersection.

Once across the intersection the pack reformed the draft line that worked so well earlier in the ride. Again the same 4 riders worked the Pull position. Kevin was gaining confidence that today’s ride would be an opportunity to keep both the Thorns and Roses together through out the ride. To best accomplish this Kevin needed to craft a route that did not have the many hills that are known to splinter the riders. Each time Kevin was in the Pull position he managed the pace to ensure no one was struggling at the back of the draft line. His pace management technique was supported by the other draft leaders. This was accomplished with out Kevin having to reveal the desired result of keeping all riders together for the entire day’s ride.

The group was closing in on the last section of Carpenter Fire Station road with lots of discussion from the back of the draft line about Up-Chuck. This triggered a change in route. Kevin knew that Steve Sparano hated the three hills in Cary Glenn, and with the back of the pack all anticipating Up-Chuck, Kevin’s evil mind figured out quickly how to mix it up for everyone. Signaling a Left turn Kevin led the pack into Cary Glenn and the three hills that actually provide more elevation gain than Up-Chuck does due to the undulations of each climb and their downhill drops. The other reason Kevin chose this route was to eliminate the many rolling hills of Mount Pisgah where previous attempts to keep the group together were destroyed by those relentless climbs.

“I hate the Cary Glenn climbs” Steve Sparano again informed Kevin. “I know that is one of the reasons we are headed there” Kevin laughed.
“These climbs need a name like Up-Chuck got a name” Steve went on complaining. “They are like 3 evil sisters” he expounded.
“to keep with the theme of Up-Chuck we could call this DRY-HEAVES Run” Kevin offered.
With this same thought process we should also name the two tough climbs on Mount Pisgah Kevin thought.
So if we name the hills in Cary Glenn “Three Evil Sisters” we could name the two climbs on Mount Pisgah as the “Two Ugly Twins”.

The pack was now rushing down the first decline and setting up for the first of the three climbs. The first climb is the second difficult with the second climb the easiest and the third climb the longest and steepest of the “Three Evil Sisters”.

Maybe we should consider categorizing all the climbs we do.
Up-Chuck, Lystra, The Three Evil Sisters, the Two Ugly Twins, then there is also the long grind on Wimberly.

Kevin has done a little research on how to categorize climbs on a bike ride and is provided next.

Ill quote this from 'Tour de France for Dummies' It is a good, clear explanation of it:

"Categorizing climbs is objective and subjective. The length of the climb, the difference in altitude from the bottom to the top, its average grade and steepest grade, and where the climb is positioned in the stage are all important factors. The elevation of the climb's summit and the width and condition of the road are also contributing factors.Certain general guidelines dictate how climbs are categorized, but race directors in different races rate climbs differently. Even year to year in the Tour de France, discrepancies occur.

In general terms,
Category 4 climbs are short and easy.
Category 3 climbs last approximately 5 kilometers (3.1 miles), have an average grade of 5 percent, and ascend 150 meters (500 feet).
Category 2 climbs are the same length or longer at an 8 percent grade and ascend 500 meters (1,600 feet).
Category 1 climbs last 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) with an average 6 percent grade and ascend 1,500 meters.
Beyond category climbs include an altitude difference of at least 1,000 meters (3,280 feet) from start to finish and have an average grade of at least 7 percent."

So the only climbs that might get categorized are

Up-Chuck with a Category 4 rating due to its short distance, its 11 percent grade, its pot holes at the bottom just as momentum is greatest, and the fact that it is early in the ride route.

Lystra would maybe earn a Category 3 rating. The climb is about 1.5 to 2 miles with the full length to 15/501 being closer to 5 miles. Its average grade is somewhere between 5 and 8 percent. Its assent is also some where between 500 feet and the 1,600 feet of a Category 2. Next time the group climbs this John Majikes or Ron Clanton need to record the climb on their GPS and get the proper reading on this climb so it can be properly Categorized.

Back to the ride write-up

“The Three Evil Sister” were slapped in the face by all riders as they easily worked their way over each summit. The group reassembled at the intersection of Yates Store with Nicole, Tom, Steve, Kevin, and Doug first ones to be found circling after defeating the previous climbs. Kevin was already planning how to best keep the pack together all the way to the run on Martha Chapel. Ideally the pack would be able to pull the Roses to speeds they have not yet experienced on Martha Chapel.

Once the group was assembled they made the left turn onto Yates Store headed to the long relatively flat run on Luter Shop. Kevin was in the Pull position and was working to keep the pace below 15 mph allowing for recovery from the Cary Glenn ordeal. Just as the group was relaxing two riders swooped in from behind the pack. “Hey want to fall in and ride with us” one of the Roses asked these two riders.
“Not sure we can sustain this blistering PACE” was the reply from the two riders.
“Excellent TRASH TALK, you guys fit right in with this groups mind set” Kevin offered. “How far have you gone and how far are you going?” the two riders inquired. “about 10 miles from the start” John Majikes responded. “We are planning between 35 and 40 miles” Kevin added.
With that the two riders slid into the pace line as the group made the right turn onto Luter Shop.

The pace was set to again Pull the group along at a good clip without dropping anyone off the back. About half way down the run on Luter Shop the group did split with a small handful of riders finding themselves with a gap that was not going to be reduced without the lead pack slowing to assist. Just as the lead group slowed there was a loud Shout “SMIT”. Kevin popped his head up and snapped it to the left only to catch a brief glimpse of a pack of riders that had passed by headed in the opposite direction. Kevin did not see who was at the front of that pack but he did recognize the Snide Scream. “COACH” Kevin shouted in recognition.

The Roses and Thorns were now ready to roll right onto 751 for the short jaunt to Martha Chapel and its smooth gradual down hill run to Lake Jordan. Martha Chapel consistently allows for well organized draft lines that hit speeds of 27 miles per hour and sustained sections allowing for speeds hovering at 25 miles per hour. Kevin’s intent was to egg the Roses into experiencing this same result.
Steve Sparano, John Majikes, Tom Plant all set themselves at the front of the draft line. Kevin positioned himself in the middle of the pack to try and control the pace for those behind while allowing those in front to push the pace as they wished. The speed rose gradually allowing all to respond without having to jump any gap to retain the draft. 25 miles and hour was held for a long stretch with the pack all in tow. Those at the middle or near the end of the draft line were coasting as those near the front worked the peddles to maintain the speed through the few minor rises and falls as the road continued its overall descent towards lake Jordan. The two new riders pressed their way towards the lead causing the pace to stiffen.
Reaching now 27 miles per hour the pack was still together.

OK wouldn’t it be great if the Roses passed the ride leaders at this speed. They are doing great and look like they could be egged into an attack. These thoughts were swimming in Kevin’s evil brain.
Sitting up on his bike Kevin glanced back to make eye contact and then signal those behind to close in and follow. Lots of blank stares were all he could muster from those in tow. Again he attempted to signal to those behind without letting the ride leaders know what was being instigated.
Again blank stares.

Kevin made his move not sure if anyone was there with him on the attack.
Kevin had three objectives for the attack.
1.. sneak up on the ride leaders and rush past.
2. Have as many Roses as possible join in on the attack
3. Hit 30 mph during the pull/attack.

One out of three is not bad. Kevin hit 30 miles per hour but was unable to sneak up on the ride leaders. This allowed them to fall in line and suck on his tire, later allowing them to catapult past Kevin as he tired from his effort at the front. Kevin was also able to egg some of those behind him to push past the ride leaders. Andy was one of those who understood Kevin’s earlier attempt to communicate the planned attack. Andy jumped once Kevin made his move and joined him in charging into the lead, and in fact was one of those who raced past Kevin as he slowed from his 30 mile per hour effort. Kevin was passed by Tom, Steve, Andy, John, the two new riders, and Doug. This put Kevin now in the no man’s land of riding solo as he continued to ride at 25 miles an hour towards Lake Jordan.

Suddenly Kevin glanced in his mirror to catch a glimpse of a “Tri-asshole – ete” in the tell tail arrow bar profile.
The Tri-assholete and tag along rider screamed past Kevin hair raisingly close.

Damn that was Nicole and THERESA.

“WAHOO GO LADY’S GO” Kevin shouted in excitement for their successful attack.

They did not slow as the attack continued in an effort to run down the lead riders before running out of road. Kevin continued to watch the attack in hopes of seeing the ROSES destroy the Thorns.
These two Roses could have run down the Thorns but ran short of road to accomplish the objective.
A fabulous attack that had the ladies hitting speeds of 30+ miles and hour.
Well done.

Martha Chapel has again provided for a fun filled fast paced push to Lake Jordan.
The effort of the ROSES was better than Kevin had hoped and planned for.

Martha Chapel will now be known as “Rose Petal Pull”.

The two Roses were each doing high fives as Kevin rolled into the intersection with so much excitement he clipped the back to Tom Plates bike. No damage done as everyone was still congratulating the ladies for their stellar performance.

Right turn onto Farrington now had the pack headed towards the rest stop at the gas station on Lystra. John Majikes was at the pull position.
“Doug aren’t you going to take your honored position on your section of road, this is DOUG’S DRAG” Kevin asked. “NA” was Doug’s response.

At the gas station the group was able to introduce each other to the two riders that had joined earlier at Cary Glenn. Everyone learned that the two rider’s names were Steve Levine, and Josh Hammer (appropriate since he is a strong rider). These two new riders would give the Hammer Heads a run for their money. We hope to see these two join in that fun in future weekend rides.

Once everyone had an opportunity to take a bio break and fill water bottles the group reassembled and headed back down Farrington towards “Kevin’s Crawl”.
Once at “Kevin’s Crawl” the pack allowed a re-shuffle to place Kevin in the pull position.
The pack was then pulled at 19 miles per hour through the gradual climb out of the Lake Jordan basin to the turn on Horton Pond.

Horton Pond did not provide for a draft line. Each rider formed a clump with one or two other riders with each clump covering the rolling hills at the pace allowing for recovery.
Once at the T intersection the lead groups jumped onto the right turn assuming those still on Horton Pond to follow their lead.

“ROSES are Taking a Break” Theresa announced. The Thorns had already made the turn and were well on their way to the left turn onto Luther.

“OK lets circle at Luther” Kevin directed. Those circling included Nicole (all smiles), Doug, John, Steve, Alan, and Kevin. The two new riders Steve Levin, and Josh Hammer elected to turn towards Luter Shop rather than follow the planned finish for the group.
The Thorns continued to circle.

“I hear them coming” announced Kevin as he could clearly hear the ROSES chatting as they made their way toward Luther.
“I don’t want to do that climb” screamed Sheila as they made the turn onto Luther.
“What Climb?” asked Theresa.
“The one everyone talks about, You know the long steep one that is on the Cup and Cone ride” Sheila continued in a panicked voice.
“That is Lystra we are on Luther” Theresa offered in a calming voice.
“OH” Sheila breathed.

With that the pack was off again much like they rode on Horton Pond, in clumps.
Again Kevin struggled on this section of road as it slowly continues to rise towards the T intersection at Green Level.
The ride leaders were found circling at the T intersection waiting for Kevin to arrive and provide the next set of directions. Doug was one of the firs to this intersection and was the Target of Kevin’s next directive.
“Doug lead them to the bike path and on home” was the directive provided by Kevin.
“Great” was Doug’s reply as he knew this was the shortest and flattest route, also allowing him to peal off as the bike path passes by his house.

The group again made the turn with no draft line forming, however the clumps did a good job keeping close contact with each other.
The run up and down and up and down Green Level had Doug, Steve, Nicole and John all in the lead clump with Kevin, Alan, and Sheila all in the next clump.
“Right Turn Right Turn” Kevin shouted at the top of his lungs as Doug was leading the front Clump past the turn that would line them up with the bike path. John Majikes was able to navigate the turn with the others, minus Doug, in the lead group having to circle back to make the proper direction.

The group slowed as each rider had to slip between the poles of the narrow gates of the bike path entrance. Onto the wooden board walk kept the pace slow setting up for a long 4 mile cool down. Doug joined the group by traversing one of the back top sections that connected to the bike patch off of Green Level since he did not turn back to enter the path as the starting gate. The bike path is a combination of board walk and blacktop with periodic narrow gates and one short tunnel as it curves through the landscape in and out of neighborhoods to finally dump into Davis Middle School. The tunnel is perfect for the child like screams that one makes in anticipation of the echo and to hear how their primordial scream gets amplified by the design of the tunnel.
“You scared me” Nicole told Kevin as she exited the tunnel with him having just experienced his primordial yell first hand.
Sheila and Doug both pealed off as the bike path went by their house.

Once all had arrived at Davis Middle School the pack turned onto Davis Drive towards Waldoo Roo and the left turn onto Cary Parkway.

It was here that Tom waved goodbye to everyone as he continued to his home.

The Roses and Thorns succeeded in riding together the entire route coving 33 miles at 15.5 miles per hour average.
Great job ROSEY Thorns, or is it Thorny Roses.