I arrived just before 10 AM to find the parking lot full! I was in the process of turning around to leave when I spied an open slot and quickly pulled in. A moment later several other hapless drivers came by wanting to know if I was leaving. Nope! Just getting started!
I decided to forego the usual ride to the South Shore Cultural Center and instead began my way north towards the Loop. Fishermen were out on the banks of the harbor. I nodded as I passed noting that one of them had brought his bicycle.
The usual bevy of runners, walkers and roadies was out in force and except for the extreme lack of sun bathers on each of the beaches I passed you would have thought it was still summer. But instead this was to be the first full day of Fall for 2010.
My legs were a bit stiff and my butt was sore. I rode along hoping that after a few miles things would ease up a bit. I had eaten a very sparse breakfast and didn’t want to force things by over-hydrating. But on a windy day that is not likely so I am thinking I did not hydrate enough.
The miles passed quickly and before long I was passing through the Loop and making my way up to the northern terminus for the Lakefront Trail. I was amazed at how many of the riders, walkers and joggers were in their 20s and 30s! Where do they find the time to workout during the week? Are they between jobs? Perhaps.
At the terminus I stopped to use the washroom. On my way out a lady was walking her dog towards the water fountain where I had been filling my bottles. The poor pooch was overwhelmed by how strange I and the bike looked and did his very best to hide behind her.
A fellow recumbent rider was just passing and he helped calm down the doggie. I left as quickly as possible so as not to cause the dog any other emotional distress. Back on the trail I began to feel the effects of a rather strong wind from the southwest.
I stopped once again at the beach near 61st Street and spotted my third recumbent of the day. It was a lady who had ridden with us on the Labor Day Ride. She has an EZ-1 which frankly scoots along at a very rapid pace.
By the time I had crossed 55th Street my knees were yelling in pain. Riders were stopping all over the place to get out of the wind. I pressed on. I was concerned that were I to stop my knees would stiffen to the point that I could not continue, so pedaling on was the only real option.
Back at the van I stowed the bike and changed back into my street shoes and went in search of some luncheon. I was probably as thirsty as I was hungry. A great ride!
Distance: 33.8 miles
Time: 3h 53m 59s