|oh, right, the bridge is out|
We set off at a warmish pace but I was able to persuade Kevin to cool it a bit. I've done a couple of Terry Hershey runs lately but I'm not in shape at all, and was hoping for a very gentlemanly ride. I was expecting the various NWCC speed groups to pass and they did, a surprisingly large number of riders.
All was going well up to the 15 mile mark, when a rider going in the other direction shouted that the bridge was out. I thanked her but was a bit confused as I couldn't remember any bridges on the route. We made the turn onto Laneview and saw three more riders who had clearly turned around. They also said that the bridge was out. Thanks, but what frickin' bridge?? Kevin suggested we ride for another 5 minutes and then decide if we need to turn.
We made it as far as the intersection and saw a large orange sign stating that the bridge was out. Suddenly I remembered that there was indeed a bridge over a creek ahead! Somewhat sheepishly we turned around and headed back. We talked about routes but ultimately all we could do was retrace our steps and then head for the gas station.
As we got closer I was beginning to tire and was glad to slot in behind Kevin, who was looking very strong. We arrived at the Exxon with Kevin's computer showing 33 miles (normally 25!). We had a good break before setting off again, right behind another group of three. We kept pace with them for a while, although Kevin was as strong as ever on the climbs and pretty much blew the group to pieces.
We made the turn onto Business 290 and I was really in trouble. I got behind Kevin and let him do all the work, but I was pretty much spent and very glad to get back to Hockley. I asked for a short breather and we took 5 in the shade of a disused gas station. Finally back at Zube and I was feeling pretty rough. Nothing that a beer, a cheese omelette (thanks Susan!) and a nap couldn't fix, though.