18 May 2014, 01:09

TiAero - Real Ale Ride Report

This ride is definitely a love-hate relationship.

Next year I need to remember to take the P-38 which is a climbing machine.

The hills are horrendous on this ride. The first 19 miles were very difficult and not much fun. The last 11 miles were incredible.

The beer afterwards was first rate!

Start of the real all ride.

This year CT (my son-in-law) and I decided to start towards the back of the pack of 30 miles and just take our time.

Well, I brought the wrong bike for that strategy.

The first couple of miles are downhill and into the wind. There were a couple of thousand riders in front of us and I spent most of the first hour riding the brakes because of all of the bicycle congestion.

Here is a short clip of the mass start with about 2,000 riders in front of us.

At the very beginning the rider in the red jersey directly in front of me is my son-in-law CT.

We quickly coasted though town (Blanco) so that we could get to the fun (?) hills.

Five miles into the ride I get trapped behind a slow moving upright on a pretty steep hill. To late, and too much traffic, to unclip and walk up the hill I’m forced to grind my way up in my lowest gear at an incredibly slow pace - so slow I have to wiggle the handle bars back and forth at an extreme rate just to maintain my balance.

This really makes my legs toast and stresses my left knee bad. Immediately at the top of the hill I have to pull over and recover. From then on I’m walking every hill.


A very common sight - me walking the hill with CT already having zoomed up and waiting me at the top.

Note: My new favorite acronym I learned recently from my health field friends - NSAIDS (Nonsteriodal Antiinflammatory Drugs, ie Motrin). I needed them after this ride.

Here it comes - the big downhill. Two hours of horrendous climbing hills so that I can have 2 minutes of extreme fun. By this time I’m very tired and since two years ago I got up to 50 mph on the slower Musashi I decided that I needed to be more cautious this year and started immediately using the brakes to try and keep the speed down.

Shortly after starting the hill a mountain biker rides by and I try to stay behind him. Of course, even riding the brakes, I still get up to 42 mph - with the mountain biker still in front of me! It took me awhile but eventually I caught up with CT.

From here on to the finish the big hills are gone and now the route turns into a very-friendly-to-recumbents enjoyable ride.

The day was gorgeous! It was a bit windy but for the most part the wind was always blocked by the trees and hills. The last several miles were directly into a headwind, but with the TiAero it did not make a difference and the roads were smooth and slightly downhill making for a fast finish.

CT finishing the ride!


Family time

After the ride I drove CT home and then spent some time with CT, my daughter Alyssa and the grandkids!

CT does some good homebrew beer. Had a couple of glasses of a very nice stout while icing down the left knee and gabbing with the family.


It was a great day!

By the numbers

This was my third Real Ale ride.

  • 2014 : TiAero 29 miles in 2:18 elapsed time
  • 2013 : Did the Bosque Tour de Norway instead
  • 2012 : Musashi 29 miles in 2:30 elapsed time
  • 2011 : Musashi 65 miles in 4:29 elapsed time

My time was hindered this year because yesterday I rode 70 miles and of course today at the beginning of the ride I toasted my legs.



Next ride - 24 Hours in the Canyon http://www.24hoursinthecanyon.org May 24th.