Sunday, September 10, 2006

St. Paul Classic Bike Tour

Today, despite rain, chilly temperatures, and wind Shawn, Brian, Shawn's friend Matt, and I rode the 30-mile St. Paul Classic Bike Tour. The weather was reminiscent of last weekend's trip to the Renaissance Festival except colder and windier. I still had a good time, even considering the uncooperative weather.

I knew it was supposed to be cold today, but I had checked as recently as last night and the forecast wasn't calling for any rain until late in the day, if at all. So when I was getting rained on in the driveway while putting the bike on the car at 5:50am this morning, I knew we were in trouble. It didn't warm up at all, and rained/misted virtually the entire time we were on the ride. Not as heavily as it did last month when Shawn and I went riding in Minneapolis, but heavily enough to get us fairly wet at times.

The ride itself was a piece of cake. What little riding I have been doing lately has all been longer rides, so the 30-mile distance was no problem at all. Similarly, since I spent quite a bit of time this year riding hilly routes for the sole-sake of working on my climbing, none of the hills on the St. Paul Bike Classic were a problem.

I'm not sure if the weather kept the crowds away, but just like last year we didn't have any problem finding parking or get caught up in messy pack riding (except for the very start, of course). Once we got a couple miles into the course the riders spread out nicely and we had plenty of room to ourselves.

I managed to guess correctly on what apparel to wear, and finally got to use the new long-sleeved jersey I got for my birthday. It worked really well, because even though it is lightweight, the inside is lined with a material that doesn't let the wind rip through, so I stayed pretty warm. My windpants were also plenty warm (and nicely rain resistant), but since they weren't tapered they occasionally would rub against my chain.

Despite the weather, it was a pretty fun time. Everyone got along well, and we were able to stay together for the majority of the ride. The route was a lot of fun, and having it closed to traffic makes it that much better. I had a good time.

Brian was all smiles before the ride started.

Brian, Matt (in the background) and Shawn at the 24 mile point.

Como Lake, and the overcast sky.

Me, Brian, and Matt


Scooter said...

Why is it so wet at Como - I don't remember it being that wet. What time did you start? We left around 7:40 and it was actually drying up a bit near there.

I looked for you at the beginning of the ride and the stops, but didn't see you lurking around.

They said there were 300 more pre-registrations than last year, so it definitely didn't get smaller.

Steve Eck said...

We started right at 7:30, and were done by 10:00 including the stops.

It wasn't necessarily coming down any harder at Como Park, but it had been misting for 24 miles of the ride. Although, I'm not sure all the wet areas on Brian were rain.... :)