Sunday, October 31, 2010
What a fantastic event! This was the first such event for this area and these people did an outstanding job! The weather cooperated as did the majority of the motels/hotels/ restaurants and local traffic.
I left on Friday afternoon to go to the event and I was lucky enough to get to caravan with two other carloads of local people going to the same event.
As you can tell, Safford is in the desert on the way to Tucson. It can get extremely warm and wind is just a natural presence. There are lots of gentle and not so gentle rolling hills between Duncan Arizona and Safford. These hills were the burdens for those that chose to ride the 104 mile race...the other 2 carloads I mentioned.
Regardless of the chosen distance, all of the racing events (104, 66, 33 miles cycling and 5K, 1/2 marathon, car show, poker run, motorcycle, plane show) all started and finished at the local airport. Here are a few shots of the area.
The 66 mile race was my choice and it started at 9:15 am. The weather was great and I got to wear shorts and short sleeves for the entire race. Temperature got up to 84. There were 70 riders in this race and only7 females. The winner was a 22 year old gal that rode the course in 3 hours and 19 minutes. She was a lot of fun to watch. I rode the course in just under 4 hours as far as I can tell by my watch because my time was not posted yet when I left. I believe that I was the third or fourth female to cross the line. We all got beautiful medals for completing the event.
I added the beauty to my special wall...with the other events I have done in the last 2 years.
The wall probably doesn't mean much to anyone but me. I look at it and remember lots of good stuff as well as lots of pain and sweat. I also have a picture of the Tour of the Gila poster. Of the two bike races I have completed (tours), I enjoyed both of them immensely but they were and are completely different. Tour of the Gila is a four day race and Safford is a one day race. I guess I'll just have to do them both again and then maybe I can pick a favorite.
Hope each and every one of you had an active, safe weekend that you truly enjoyed!
Friday, October 29, 2010
Mentally I got dressed up for Halloween this morning...actually I passed but at the high school level...some kids dress up, some kids don't and some kids, well you just can't tell.
Last night I had lots to do. I taught an extra class at WNMU, fixed dinner (salmon, coleslaw, sweet potato), did laundry, used mapquest for directions, packed (mostly), took the bike in for a once over, walked the dogs and then I really made their night......
Yup, daughter, her boyfriend and I all washed dogs. We did 2 yorkies, a bull dog, a pitbull and a miniature dachshund. The "outside" dogs were nervous but not to worry....too cool outside to wash them.
Blue is as fine as she is going to get. I just ordered a new crank set for her with shorter pedals. My knees will thank me I hope.
So I am packed and ready to go! I am pretty focused which has put me in a difficult mood...
quiet confidence...I am not sure but I do know one thing....
one had best stay out of my way as I plan on kicking booty and taking names! I AM going to have a good time! I LOVE TO MOVE IT!
You all can dream it, do it and enjoy...I am! Have a great weekend.
Monday, October 25, 2010
This last Saturday morning I awoke to strong wind and cold temperatures. A little annoying as I was planning to go on a road trip with several local friends and cycling enthusiasts, so a few added layers, an extra cup of coffee, and a dose of strong fortitude had me driving over to the meeting spot.
We started in Silver and road west towards Cliff, Buckhorn, Pleasanton and Glenwood. We faced a head wind for the majority of the trip. This is the first picture I took just past Mangus Springs where I had to stop and take off a layer for a while.
We are actually traveling towards the light blue mountains and all though it doesn't look like it...most of this trip is uphill. By the time we got to the High Plains...deer, antelope, buffalo, etc......were not playing as the wind was very cold, it was getting cloudier by the minute, and general riding conditions were very unpleasant! I do love this area because you can see for miles. There is a turn off that will take you into Arizona so you can't daydream too much.
During this stretch of the trip, we riders were stretched out. Sometimes there was several hundred feet between us and at times there were several miles between us. The High Plains saw me about a mile behind the two leading riders and seven miles ahead of the following group. I was doing some pretty specific talking to myself. I hurt all over, I was cold and I really wanted to quit but.........It dawned on me that I was being pushed from behind by a fairly good looking person. They were following me relatively closely and they did not appear to be quite as heavy as I am...you could see broad shoulders and a narrow waist sitting atop strong legs that were churning up and down like never tiring pistons.....OMG I was looking at my own shadow! I was thrilled. I really do not look all that heavy and I can see how broad my shoulders have become from swimming. My waist is getting smaller and I could actually see how slim and well-defined my legs are. It took some admiring but I decided that I look okay right now. Still room for improvement but much better than this time last year.
Before I knew it I was at Aldo Leopold Lookout. We gathered here for snacks, lunch and fluids, and for a potty break before the last 20 miles into Glenwood. I decided the new, skinnier looking me could go another 20 miles and I did! Wow, 72 miles in less than desirable conditions and mostly uphill. Here is a picture of downtown Glenwood. Do not be deceived...it is a beautiful, happening little ranching community.
The little place on the left is where most of the cyclists stayed...I stayed just down the road on the right. The little café on the right is called Golden Girls and they have fantastic breakfasts at six every morning. Pancakes the size of dinner plates, wonderful biscuits, pastries, omelets, all for about five dollars. Coffee is 25cents a cup (not a typing error) and fabulous! We had dinner at the Blue Front Bar. It is owned by Bucky Allred who used to be a practicing musician with several records out. He still plays some but mostly he works at the bar/restaurant and spoils his kids.
Sunday morning the weather was much nicer. The wind was calm and although it started out very cool, when the sun got up everything warmed up and the return ride to Silver was much nicer. Here are some pictures of the climb out of the canyon Glenwood and Pleasanton sit in.
Last but not least...here is the picture of the plaque honoring my father on the Veterans Wall at WNMU:
His name was Dean French and it is neat because several of the plaques right next to him were some of his dearest friends.
Next weekend I am doing Tour De Safford. It is a bike race, 1/2 marathon or 5K walk to raise money for their hospital. The bike race is either a 100 miles, 66 miles, or 33 miles. I am doing the 66 miles. Lots of people from Silver going. The weather should be grand and it is for a great cause.
Here's hoping you and yours are healthy, happy and remaining active!
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