March in the Summer

Ok, it's obviously not quite that cool out, but it sure was cooler the last few days.  For someone who has been whining a lot about the heat, and not riding much this was a time to get back to the roots and do some March style miles.

Friday I rode a great gravel route similar to what Trevor and I normally ride in the spring-  out past stagecoach, through the valley, down to Chatfield, up to Dover and then back into Rochester.  Felt really good to get out on the gravel bike.

Yesterday, I left town along with the nonessential.  We took a nice route up to Cannon Falls.  I wouldn't leave there until it was almost dark which left me with an interesting leg down to Red Wing in the dark!  Today I took the Wisconsin side down to the crossing at Wabasha then rode a series of 'cat 4' climbs in the hilliest part of where the Ragnarok goes (basically rode mile 45-65 of that course backwards-  the section with the river bottoms and the two or three largest climbs), then dropped by Spring Creek for some moto on my way to Millville and then onto the gravel back way home from there.

I got a new cell phone last week too-  cell phone pictures...

 Chris, milk cartons
 That was the sweetest wine I've ever tasted...  I forgot the name of their white that was dry enough for me.
 Cougar zone
 Trying to book it toward Red Wing before it got too dark to ride gravel safely on 25s...

 This was where I got the light out, soon thereafter I was on the Cannon Valley Trail as it was very hard to pick good lines
Kelly's stop with cousin
 I navigated all the way around the big lake
Random river where I once completely beached a jet boat on a sand bar...  Three of us were best buddies in high school and were all out with dates.  We left one couple at a nearby beach on the main channel.  The four of us remaining would spend about 4 hours on that sandbar digging with paddles, hoping for a tidal effect.
 THIS is what gravel roads are supposed to be
 yeah, I don't remember taking a bridge during the Ragnarok...  it turns out that you do have to cross the bridge.
 This is quite possibly the highest point on the ragnarok course, sort of hard to tell from the pictures.  It's certainly the top after the two longest climbs.
 Spring Creek Moto

 Someone needs to get them a nicer looking sign
 This was a disaster...  The only part of the day when it was a bit hot and not raining was right before this.  I had also been totally confused about where I was and basically missed a needed gas station stop.  I had no water, luckily I found a bar and then it started to rain.
 This was actually before I found water...
Final home stretch heading back to town up on top of the plains

Next weekend I race in that crit in Des Moines...  Then the following it's either the Ore to Shore or another trip like this (possibly on a mountain bike in northern wisconsin).

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