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2008 Tour de Kale Denton North Carolina cycle + inline skate event

MikeB's picture

Woooo-Weeeee,  the multitude of colors in Blake's Tour de Kale Speed Map reminds me how steep some climbs were and on a few of the descents as well.  Why is it the ascents were twice as frequent as the descents - I still don't get that.

After reading his quick paragraph I had to chime in:

Ya right, you couldn't keep up with me.....likely story.  I fell for your evil plan - hook, line and sinker:   "oh, MikeB, you've trained with some fast No.Raleigh skaters.....we're probably holding you up, I'm sure your fast, don't let us keep you."

All the while knowing it was my first organized event and we were in the 1st five miles so legs were fresh.  So sure, after the 3rd time you mentioned it - I bought it; picked up the pace; and never looked back.  Until the 2nd rest stop that is.

This is where my tank was running close to "E" with 10 of the 37 miles to go....10 miles that seemed to be mostly unforgiving inclines.  I now know you knew I didn't know you knew this to be the case, ya know?

So I'm on E and you & eebee come blissfully to the rest stop, fresh as a spring daisies, grab a drink and Jelly sammiches from the sweet volunteers, and roll on.  I hung with you for maybe a mile.....maybe, but the legs couldn't keep the pace so much needed drafting was unavailable.  With every hill you got smaller and smaller until finally, as I crested another hill, you two were nowhere to be seen - just left me there, like some discarded unwanted puppy whimpering roadside for a friendly face to stop and pick me up.

I trudged on though, determined to finish.  And with 100 yard to go, my legs completely locked up.  Not once, not twice but 3 times.  That's never happened before and would prefer it not ever again.  That stretch was the worst for me.  (your evil plan now fulfilled ;-) 

All in all though it was a great event.  I very much enjoyed it and will do it again.  But won't go out so fast next time.  The earlier miles were the best, and what a rush to reel in cyclists one by one and kinda freak them out skating passed them.

To cap off the skate to waiting volunteer arms armed with cold wet towels and bottled water, then a BBQ plate and a raffle prize - well that was pretty cool.  And I wear my TdK t-shirt all the time.  I'm darn proud of 37 miles.

Ya, it's true.... my skates and I were not on speaking terms the entire trip home and for the next few days, but we've made up since then.


eebee's picture

I'm so glad you came out to the event!

Funny report MikeB! I dunno about '...fresh as spring daisies...', more like wilted ones that have been mangled into a daisy chain. I was out of it at that rest stop, and was in 'hanging in there' mode trying to get back to Denton Farmpark! The heart-rate monitor saw to it that my legs weren't cramping, but my brain was totally fried. Yes! It is a rush to skate past cyclists in the beginning and reel them in one by one, but I haven't yet gotten to the point of not bonking as a result of that :-) Looking forward to skating with you again sometime. Maybe we can all coordinate rotations or something and catch a draft or two!
MikeB's picture

Looking foward to more skates

Getting back to Denton Farmpark was a total victory!

Skating with RSN again would be so much fun, and Lord knows I could use a drafting rotation.  With that last mile I felt like I was in a pen full of pit-bulls and I was wearing Milk Bone underwear.  :0)

roadskater's picture

Gone in 60 Seconds, No Fresh Daisies Anywhere

Yes it was funny early on when rotating. We started out by making a half circle around the Denton Farm Park, essentially. I was still goofing off taking photos, and by the time I took pics of the back entrance of Denton Farm Park it was way past time to rotate. When MikeB's very first time up front came, he was gone in 60 seconds! We never expected to see him again until perhaps lunchtime if we could make it there in time to catch him before rolling out in his car. But we went on with our tortoise technique and figured we'd survive the miles and heat and have a good day, despite feeling a bit unworthy of course. This was so much the case that neither of us even noticed MikeB at the rest stop, where food and drink were of intense focus. Despite his having been there when we arrived, it was several minutes before we noticed him and I remember thinking he probably wouldn't be able to go as slow as us if we restarted together. In fact, there was a hill right after that stop and amazingly enough, I needed to go off the road for a few seconds even on that first climb after a stop (of course, standing around and talking to new people are not exactly rest for me, as animated as I can be around new folk). You can see a notch in our route right after the red spot for the rest stop (use the drop down to pick one of the topo map options and you'll be able to zoom in further than the grey terrain option...btw the NEXRAD drop down shows the rain currently in that area, which might be handy next year). Once we get dropped we sort of get into our tortoise "steady as she goes" (convert from Kirk to Spock) mode and do our own thing, figuring we'd better go our steady way and get there whenever we can. We always expect to be dropped again so we don't try to leave the same time as others who've already shown they'll leave us...once a day is enough methinks. Sometimes the turtle way works out faster, but usually not. It's just more enjoyable overall (over the years especially) and perhaps a bit safer, but not in every way. On this day, I just knew I needed to keep going so my cramps wouldn't appear, and get out of the sun when we could. Later I got a full dose of cramps on one of the rides north of Greensboro, the Red, White & Blue show'n'go, where we did 9 extra miles due to a missing road sign. We really enjoyed the lunchtime with MikeB and Northinsouth (and jr) and lots of cyclists in a great mood, plus some local guys who'd been around for decades in this place and love it well. More than anything this is an event where you know who will be benefitted each year, and can read their stories. And it's true that there's very little traffic because it seems everyone nearby is involved in volunteering for this great cause. Thanks for coming, MikeB, and get yourself over here for some of these free training rides. You don't have to do the Tour to do them...but you may decide you want to.
MikeB's picture

I'm adopting your Turtle Philosophy

If only the downhills were longer and the uphills shorter, then the rabbit philosophy would have been ideal. But, oh well, after 30 miles, uphills are a B!%@#. I have completely learned my lesson and now will be know as Yertle the skating turtle. I'll even stay in my shell and only come out at rest stops to do my Dana Carvey impersonation: "turtle....turtle.." I certainly look forward to next year and other events with the RSN army.
roadskater's picture

You'll Also Find Faster Turtles

Hey MikeB. It's not for everybody and we know that. We've lately had more people out skating, and we were keeping together somewhat, but it's clear the speed variations are widening and the larger pack will be smaller packs. One of these other faster packs might be just the ticket, or perhaps our speed will work well for you. Either way we really enjoyed seeing you at the Tour de Kale and hope you'll come over to one of the training rides at least, and maybe the tour. Are you planning to do the TarWheels ride in Hillsborough this coming weekend? There's a training ride in Winston-Salem this weekend too, and in recent years it's been a good one. I plan to be there, and expect that eebee will too if I got that right.
MikeB's picture

dogs are faster than turtles

so far my training has been solo - leave my driveway and hit the country roads for a couple hours. The 1st mile is really nasty gatorback but then much better pavement begins. Cars aren't too much an issue, but dogs can be a different story. Most show no interest, but a few have decided to explicitely let me know where their property line begins with one deciding to escort me from the area. That was rather interesting. Besides carrying my on-board Road Rash kit, maybe I should add a few Scooby Snacks and keep them at the ready, just to divert attention if need be.

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