The (Walk Up and) Over the Hill Cyclist (Steve Turtell) Reports

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Last week’s Easy Rider quartet went through some changes for the second, slightly longer Spring Training Ride. When we met at 125th Street to check in, Jim said he wanted to try the Steady Eddies and I told him that Aurelia had to skip it altogether because of a nasty case of bronchitis. She was missed, but Andre was back with me, and I had the pleasure to be Ride Mama for three more riders: Andre’s friend Joaquin, Amy, who’d done the 1st training ride and Vicki, who was riding almost for the first time, just as Andre and Aurelia had last week. Vicki missed last week’s Cop Shop trip only because she had to stop to fix a flat tire on her new bike—she arrived at 125th Street too late to catch up with us.

Once we were over the bridge and we’d gathered for the first rest stop at Strictly Cycles, we were joined by Jose, who knew the route from last year, so he led the pack and I rode last, mostly riding with Vicki, who gets a major shout out for doing such a long ride nearly from scratch. Just a few miles from Piermont we were joined by Fred, who led us into town. Piermont is very pretty and we had a leisurely lunch before getting back on our bikes. Fred offered to co-lead the Easy Riders for the second leg, and I was happy to have someone more experienced along. Our return, however, was delayed because of not one, but two flats, so Fred and Joaquin left later than we did. For the trip from Piermont to Strictly Cycles, it was Andre, Amy, Vicki and me—I managed to ride all the hills for the first time, and reassured Vicki that she would be doing them as well soon enough.

We enjoyed a final rest at the bike shop before coming back into Manhattan –Amy heading out before the rain started, Andre, Vicki and I relaxing until we were rejoined by Fred and Joaquin. As Fred, Andre, and Joaquin planned to take the subway once over he GW Bridge, Vicki and I rode together for home stretch down the Hudson under increasingly cloudy skies, parting ways at Chelsea Piers, she to head east to Stuyvesant Town, me to Houston Street before heading east over the Elizabeth.

By the time I carried my bike up the two flights of stairs, I was spent, but happy. I was happier still when I checked my Moves app and saw that I’d covered 61.8 miles, a “century” in kilometers. Now I’m really certain I’ll manage to do a real century: 100 miles. Looking forward to next week’s ride to the Pancake House!