Tuesday, August 19, 2014

New Targets: R-12

Mark Pondering Ben's attempted crossing

Storm cloud over Baboquivari Peak
My 50-State goal is in the books which begs the question: What's next?

I love long rides, but I can't string so many of them back-to-back any more being nearly the ripe age of 69 in October. 200k Brevets are perfect for me, distance-wise. Longer than that I can't fuel since my food allergies/intolerance preclude eating out of fast food and convenience stores. 

My freedom to, at will, do Brevets with the AZ Randonneur Club is a bit challenging since I currently am not able to drive to remote starts, my recurring seizures put my driving privileges on ice.

Next best thing? RUSA Permanents originating in Tucson! There are currently four I can choose from and I plan to develop a couple more which will hopefully be approved by the national RUSA Permanent Coordinator. 

The R-12 is great, too, since I can start the 12-month cycle at anytime and I chose August, 2014 having returned from the 50-State quest in July. 

Mark Doumas, Ben Andrews, Margaret O'Kelley and I had a gloriously hot (mid-upper 90's), humid (it's monsoon season) 205k ride following the clockwise Arivaca route.

Ben the bandit

After lunch in Arivaca
The monsoon rains have been generous south of Tucson; none of us can ever remember seeing the desert being so lush and green. Truly, we could easily have been in Arkansas. The only giveaway that we weren't were the mountains and the type of vegetation. But green, green, green it was.









A very long, hot 44 miles with no services between Arivaca and Three Points
The 44 mile stretch with no services between Arivaca and the grocery store at Three points was a bit too long for the water supplies we had with us. We shared what we had with each other until some construction workers topped off our bottles. Hindsight, we should have topped off at the Border Patrol station at about the halfway mark. 

I was beyond grateful to Mark, Margaret, and Ben for adjusting their preferred start time of 1700 to 0500 for me! They prefer to ride through the night when we're in these dog days. But I didn't want to risk messing up my stretch of no seizure days by going into sleep dep and/or totally confusing my sleep cycles. 

I opted out of dinner with the crowd at Don's Bayou since Kirk was only 5 days post-op from his clavicle reconstruction after his bike crash on the preceding Sunday.

Next 200k should be mid-September from Phoenix to Tucson following the Skull Valley Loop Challenge out of Prescott the day before.

I should add that Roger Peskett, our AZ Rando Perm Coordinator, is my inspiration having completed 32 consecutive RUSA rides of at least 200k. Can't catch him, but I'll try to stay on his wheel.

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