Friday, October 3, 2008

Cycle North Carolina - Day 6

CNC Day 6
Laurel Hill to White Lake
21.1 mph average speed
29.4 mph maximum speed
3:38.46 total ride time
77.14 miles
less than 500 feet of climbing

Doug (in blue) and Tim (in white) at a rest stop on en route to White Lake

The century loop, solo at a "touring pace"
17.1 mph average speed
21.7 mph maximum speed
1:27:18total ride time
24.93 miles

Several cyclists commented that all of the stop overs should have been like White Lake. At White Lake there were food vendors, a wine vendor, free beer, aerial demonstrations, a bluegrass band, dancing, ice cream, canoes (not many takers after six days of riding). The indoor camping at the FFA Center was in 15 person cabins. My indoor camping buddies and I were able to vet everyone to create a no snoring cabin.

The best part of the route was a stop at Lu Mil vineyard. They had a tasting at the rest stop there but I stuck with the jams and jellies. I am not a big fan of Muscadine wines.

The route was 77 miles with a rest stop at the FFA Center and then another 25 mile loop if you wanted to do the century option. Most people stopped after the first 77 miles because, after all, we were there. I felt funny about stopping because the century was a goal of mine. I went to the luggage truck and claimed a spot in our No Snoring cabin. Then Doug asked if I was doing the century. I said no but then I put my bike shoes back on and did it. Earlier in the day I told Doug that I might do the century at a taking it easy touring type pace and I went ahead and did that. One of the volunteers at a rest stop told us how beautiful the century route was and how much we would like it. I beg to differ.

The century route was a little bit unnerving. It started out with signs that said "100" and after three or four of these signs, the "100" was not on them anymore. I saw almost no cyclists and I never saw a SAG vehicle. After a while I started to worry that I was on the Day 7 route. I was in a very rural wooded area with no cars or cyclists. I decided that at mile 20 of the century route, I needed to find a way to call if I did not feel like I was headed back towards White Lake. By this time, my hands were getting numb because the road was rough and I was getting a lot of vibration. By mile 21, I felt like I was headed in the right direction and I did make it back to camp. For those who did not do the century, the photo below shows what you missed.

When I got back, there were at least half a dozen food vendors set up so I had a snack from one of the Relay for Life tables. After cleaning up, I enjoyed the DJ and visited with CNC friends. We watched the aerial show and had a Carolina BBQ dinner. Then a bluegrass group -- The Boys from Carolina -- played and several people started to dance. Judith wanted to go out on the pontoon boat and I went with her. It was good timing too, since we were on the lake as the sun set.

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