Sunday, March 31, 2013

Day 2 Roanoke to Asheville, 2013

 Day 2 dawned and I was on the road again.  I pedaled about 2 miles to the Mountain View Restaurant in at Fancy Gap and the parkway, and ordered a bacon and cheese sandwich on toast, with a piece of pecan pie to go.  I had eaten at the hotel and was getting ready for lunch several hours later.  I omitted the egg, for fear that it would go bad.  It was probably cold enough not to worry about it, but, I passed anyway.

 I headed south on the parkway.  I rode on a closed section for about a mile and it was clear of snow and ice.  I ended up riding almost entirely on the parkway today.  It was a welcome change from yesterday, not having to battle a bunch of traffic.  I was cold.  I was layered well, but with the temps below 30 still, especially down in the valleys near the creeks, there was simply no way to stay warm.  Most of the climbs are east facing and most of the gaps and decents were south west facing.  Climbing in the warm sun, unzipping the jacket,  cresting the climb, zipping up,  descending and shivering became the routing for the day.

 I spent a lot of time trying to figure out exactly why I was doing what I was doing.  Pedaling for hours, uncomfortable etc.  Some people say that they do it because it makes them feel alive.  That's not it for me.  The experience really made me wish I was dead.......   But I was out there, and as mentioned before, it was better than sitting on the couch all day.   In addition this was another aspect to a challenge that I had not yet taken on.  I have done 2-3 hour rides in the snow and freezing temps, but not all day,  multiple days.    I suppose that I wanted to find out if I could handle it.  And I am pleased to say that I did.  Will I do it again?   Possibly, but I don't plan on doing the ride if I do not have access to the parkway. 
 I arrived at Doughton Park at 11 am and sat down for lunch.  Tasty and cold, but I didn't care, because it was tasty.  And it was tasty....

The view for lunch.
The rest of the day was spent grinding uphill and bombing downhill.  Up until Doughton Park the hills are mostly bearable with lots of relative flats,  south of Doughton though and things start to get long and steep.

I finally ground my way to Deep Gap and took 421 south into Boone,  with a headwind on a 4 lane hwy,  not the most pleasant way to end the day.  Rolling in to the hotel, I'm not sure what I looked like, but I had some difficulty getting complete thoughts out, and the clerk must have wondered about me.

After a shower and some rest, I walked across the street for 2 tacos, an enchilada, rice, beans and chips with some Ben and Jerry's for dessert.

Lights out at 8:15 pm,  I slept hard until 6am.

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