Saturday, June 30, 2018

Heat Wave and Hilly

Cree says:

Today was, again, a day of improvement and getting more comfortable and knowledgeable about preserving energy (+ all the positive self-talk in the world)! The roads however, while 60% of them were great, the other 40% need some TLC by means of new paving; what I'm trying to say is that when we pulled into the hotel for the night I hit my handlebar and exclaimed "I'm tired of being thrown around by these roads". So much tired passion Creean, so much. 

Random thoughts of the day: 
- Damn Lance, I understand the roids 
- Damn, if i were the other (clean) racers, I would be SO mad at Lance
- Why are we on a 5 mile trail made of sand and racquetball size rocks?
- The people we are meeting along the way are so freaking nice! and way encouraging.
- I'm fishtailing. Stop, regroup. I'm falling, I'm currently falling!!! (into dirt, all good, just bruised)
- Cool! I've never had a tan from gloves before
- If I eat one more bug I'm going to loose it 
- Is there a pool around here?
- I've never cussed this much before.

He says:

Another big test today with hills (3,000 feet of climbing) and the heat ( 90 deg). We got off to a good start at 6AM and knocked out 25 miles before the heat kicked in. We went to Havard (CT) today, then cruised through Northborough and Westborough ( wish is actually south of Northborough) After some breakfast and liquid refill in Westborough, had a NOT enjoyable 5 mile ride on some rough pavement getting ready for a new road. Then climbed and road through Whitenville, Douglas, Thompson and into Putnam.  

Switching over to Google maps for the next 10 days or so. The ACA maps we have are taking us up a little too far north where there is a lot of elevation changes to deal with. Going to swing through lower Connecticut to get a little shorter route to make our days a little easier. We've been spending too much time on the bike these first 3 days.

Ended up in a desolate spot tonight so we had to order in Domino's. Cheesy Bread, Medium Pizza, Salad ( for Creean), Buffalo Chicken sandwich and Blondie Brownies.  Hella intake after today's ride.


Stats - 59 miles (187 total)
Calories - 3,001 (9,113 total)
Time - 8:15 (26:30 total)
Total Climb - 2,828 feet (6,872 total)
Ayer MA - Putnam CT
Room 106
Dominos Takeout (Pizza, sandwich, cheesy bread, salad, Blondie)

Rolling tree lined hills of MA

First walk of the day up Sawyer Hill

Break after the monster walk up the hill

Northborough scenery

Bad Ass Bikers

We didn't accept the detour and went across the bridge anyway
Yes, Creean we have to dip the tires somewhere

Connecticut and as far as you know that marker in the background WAS the Tristate Marker for MA, RI, and CT. Also the very ROUGH off roading trail.

Race night in Thompson CT

Required rest stop to not overheat.

Rolling in to Putnam with a Peacock welcome!

Today's route

Friday, June 29, 2018

We are moving along.

Cree says:

Well, today was so much better (don’t worry, it was still very defeating in some measures lol). This morning (thank goodness) came with very few sore muscles and a positive attitude. As the day moved on I felt A LOT more comfortable on the bike, got my shifting to work for me better, and had a few times were I was genuinely like “oh yeahhh, I could do this all day” (yes, even that feeling was during an incline). Hoping for more paths like that one! 

However, the rolling hills of NH/MA are a beast. The sharp incline, pivot, sharp incline had my legs locked and pulled over to the side of the road most of the time. 

I’m still feeling *relatively* motivated and ready for the coming days, just bummed our pace is much slower that originally thought! 

Shout out: If I didn’t know before, Dad is an incredible teacher, cyclist, and leader!! Thank goodness for him!

He Says:

Way better riding in the sunshine and dry weather today.  The shorter distance also helped. Like Creean said, the rolling hills are killer on the legs. Nothing like out west where you ride the same road for 40-50 miles flat out.  Mostly expected, but this Atlantic Route is big challenge to navigate.  There are a lot of turn points along the way that we end up stopping to check to make sure we are headed in the right direction.  Starting to get a little better on re-routing to easier roads ( aka state highways) where the terrain is flatter. The traffic is heavier but the side of the road is much wider. 

Still we are in very beautiful country, maybe about 60 miles or so inland where the trees/forest are dense. I can't help but wonder how people settled in the area 400-500 years ago with all the vegetation. It's challenging enough with a map winding around the area, let alone years and years ago.

We rolled through the cute little town of Exeter where we stayed last night. There was a small river running through it and a nice town square.  Then on through Kingston which had about a mile long park running between 2 roads that were about 200 yards from each other. Very different and I don't recall seeing anything like that before.  On in to Derry NH for lunch and a 45 minute work stop.  Town had more of an agriculture feel to it with grain stores and such.  Then down into Hudson and Nashua on a route detour to get us some easy riding for 6-7 miles.  Crossed into Massachusetts and crossed the Merrimack River. Then some tough riding through the country for the last 15 miles.

Tiny's Diner in Ayer MA for dinner. I went all in on pasta AND mashed potatoes.  Creean with the Hot Turkey. Both $12 portions where more like $25 anywhere else.


Stats - 58 miles (128 total)
Calories - 2,862 (6,112 total)
Time - 7:45 (18:15 total)
Total Climb - 2,208 feet (4,044 total)
Room 134
Exeter NH - Ayer MA
Tiny's Dinner ( Hot Turkey and Spaghetti)

Again, hard to get pictures while riding ;(

Getting ready to head out

Quick re-fill on liquids

At least we had this new road to ourselves most of the way

State 3 in 3 days

Merrimack River crossing

How we really feel

It's not a bike tour without walking

Finally got on a rail trail to finish off the last 5 miles

Safe and sound and ready to shower!!

Today's route.

Thursday, June 28, 2018


Cree says:

Starting from the end of the day, when we got to the hotel 

specifically, the bathtub to take our socks off
yes, in the tub because of X1000 pieces of dirt 
yes, this dirt hatred runs in the family
All I could do was look down and say “good job legs!”. Sweet, sweet delusion. 
Riding that far ,70miles, (in that time frame) for the first time is the hardest physical activity I’ve ever done. I know. Shocker right? 

The song “everything is awesome” from the LEGO movie came into my mind right off the bat (thanks for that mind!), but really except for the phenomenal landscape, not so awesome says my neck, back, head, etc. 

Honestly though, my morale is still humming along with that tune because, again, what an experience. I’m excited and full of electrolytes going into day 2!

Dad joke of the day (on a back trail) “Are those the Red Coats up there? Yep.. they are on our team (dad had a red coat on)” 

He says:

Memory is short, but there may have been only 1 ride 7 years ago that was more challenging than today.  When you are thinking 63 miles and maybe 6 hours of riding, that turns into 70 miles ( must have mis-calculated something) and 10.5 hours of riding.... that's soul sucking.  We  basically had pouring rain for 8 hours on day 1 ( I rode  5 weeks, CA - FL without a drop of rain last time). We had 12 miles of riding on an old dirt path ( wet and soft and you get the picture). Who knew Maine had so many rolling hills. 

On the other hand, Creean was just AMAZING for her first real day out there. She has no quit in her and she had every chance to throw in the towel.  What a trooper.

The scenery was stunning today along the coast of Maine, it's just too bad visibility was about 500 yards and we had to have our head down most of the way just trying to keep it going.  After we meandered through Portland, we found our way on to an old rail road bed trail ( not blacktopped) that went through low laying marshlands.  We were off and on coastal highway 1 and 1A where the traffic was somewhat heavy but plenty of road space.
Kennebunk, Wells ( founded 1643), and York Harbour are all quaint Ocean side towns with very nice little old homes. Portsmouth, I'm sure was nice, but we were both happy the rain finally stopped, on busy highways and way focused on the road.

Meandered through rural Hew Hampshire the last 18 miles or so in to Exeter and so relieved the day was over.

The sort of bad news was picture taking was not good when it's raining so hard so little to show the beauty of it all here. ( also, probably lost my simple digital camera today due to water).

Stats - 70 miles 
Calories - 3,250
Time - 10:30
Total Climb - 1,836 feet
Portland ME - Exeter NH
Room 212
TL Juan's Mexican

Starting off with all smiles 7:00 AM

No traffic and slow moving trails.

Still smiling

She really would rather be signing up for this activity after today

McD's stop # 2 for the day

Rolling along and still smiling in Kennebunk

We made it to the Atlantic, but we are dipping tires another day

York Harbor, ME.  The Harbor Master waved to us!

Safe and sound at 5:30

Washing away ALL the sand from as much as we can.

Today's Route ( Garmin cut out in the rain and missed the opening 15 miles from Portland ;(

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

DMB July 20th or bust!

Cree says:

Crazy day, crazy day. Dad and I traveled across the country (myself way to sick for comfort) and found out how beautiful Maine is, we realized we are going to bike through 4 states in a ripe 4 days, and Germany got booted from the World Cup (personal heartbreak, oh well, go Mexico!). Upon getting to our hotel, we put our bikes together; I mean dad completed this assembly because he reinforces to me everyday that he is a jack of all traits. However, his weakness is being dirty so it was wonderful to watch him put chains on and get covered in black grease, squirming with delight. Overall, the moral is high in this 1/2 of the camp. I may be sick and tomorrows forecast may be 100% rain, but what an experience and to do it with the one and only John Albert. Kapowwww. 

He says:

(just a little blog on the pics for bigger views)

Off and running on our 3 week adventure to DMB in Raleigh, NC on July 20th.

Heck of a long travel day to get across the country. Left the house at 3 AM and got to the hotel at 3PM so a fun 10 hour day of travel.

Bikes and all though made it in 1 piece. First sign we saw when we got on I-70 alerted us that it’s “ride your bike to work week”.  Yeah, we’re riding our bike to work so to speak.  Unfortunately though, there have been 8 Colorado bikers die already this year, so please share the road! Especially if you are driving in ME, NH, CT, NY , NJ, PA, MD, DC, VA, and NC in the coming weeks.

Creean was a trooper today getting across the country.  We have to get her through this little sickness she picked up on Monday. Hopefully she will come around tomorrow and hopefully sea level helps as well. Fun day Thursday to get started anywhere from 50-90% chance of rain all day. So we’ll be looking to dodge the weather as much as possible.  It took 5 weeks the last trip to see a drop of rain so clearly some payback for this adventure.

And then… we had to put bikes together. Creean’s was easy as can be. Mine not so much. Chain got all tangled up and the back derailuer was taken off making the whole but the back tire on in 5 minutes taking 4 hours and an undisclosed amount of money.  HUGE shout out to Peter and Karyn at Port City Bikes in downtown Portland ME , for staying open an extra hour. I would have not gotten my bike put back together if it weren’t for a last minute cab ride and expert help.  THANKS SO MUCH!  Enjoy the pictures and you can’t imagine how freaked out I was with basically ALL of my chain lubrication going on to my hands. 

Finally all settled in and ready to get ready for a bike trip tomorrow. Pretty bummed the night didn’t turn out where we both got a test ride in and a nice easy dinner for tomorrow, but 9:30 PM and just getting into prep work for the day tomorrow.

Stats - 2,000 miles 
Calories - 500 ish
Time - 10:45
Total Climb - 80,000 feet
Room 112
Delivery Pizza ( sucked)

Not necessarily all that awake at 4:00AM, but way ready to go!

 First look at Maine

Successful arrival of ALL of us!

Cramming it in a taxi

Easy enough, lets get our bikes together

 Disgusting!! and the cry for help

Peter and Karyn saves the day!!

Oh crap... I've got a busted rim to figure out along the way too! I'm sure this will create an side track story before its over or I can find one!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

We are ready to go!!

T-minus 12 hours til our 3AM wake up call to fly to Portland ME. 
We have got it all ready to go and planned as good as we can.

Creean got all of her practice rides in at Dick's the other day.

The outdoor practice rides are in (probably not enough of them).

The route is set ( but adjustable).

The bikes are boxed (and ready for takeoff).

The bags are packed (and as light as can be).

Official street clothes are in ( in case people can't tell we are together).
And last but not least, our cover shot is all set.