Bike MS Training, March 15 – 16: The ride must go on…

Well, it was a rough weekend for biking. At least I finally got my Bike MS fundraising page up! In case you missed it, I’m riding the Bike MS: Sam’s Club Round-Up Ride in north Texas during the first weekend of May. The ride goes from Frisco to Fort Worth with an overnight at the Texas Motor Speedway. My in-laws live in Fort Worth, so it will be great to know some spectators again.

The forecast for this past Saturday called for rain, but not until noon. Even as I left that house at 8:30 am, the forecast said rain at noon. I left in a fog / light mist. As I went further north, the fog and mist got worse. By about mile 5 I’d call it light rain. From there, it basically alternated between mist to actual rain for almost the entire ride. I hit one dry spot as I rode over the Mansfield Dam on my Dam Loop route. You don’t get any photos because of safety, I was too busy hanging on to my handle bars. I was drenched when I got home, but at least I rode 52 miles. Later that day, as I enjoyed a lovely sunny afternoon at SXSW, I silently cursed those weather forecasters.

On Sunday, the forecast called for a cold front with blow-you-down winds to roll in. When I woke up, the winds weren’t supposed to start for about 90 minutes. However, 30 minutes later after I finished breakfast and went out on my ride, it was windy. And dreary. At least I only had to ride 20 miles, right? Well, at mile 6 I heard my front wheel hissing… fourth flat in 3 weeks! Just after I changed my rear tire so that I wouldn’t flat anymore this training season… and my front gets a flat. It was hissing, but only slowly losing air. I found the source of hiss, and there was almost no mark on my tire. I pulled out the tube with the slightest puncture and decided to “boot” the tire with a dollar bill so that if there was something on the inside of the tire (even though I couldn’t feel anything) it wouldn’t cause another flat. It was so windy that as I tried to install the new tube, the dollar blew away and I had no idea where it was supposed to go. Oh well. I pumped up the tire and rode on, into a cold and nasty headwind.

Luckily, the new tube held and I eventually turned out of the headwind and took a few photos for you. It was such a relief to turn into the Balcones / Spicewood neighborhood.


The neighborhood has a golf course.


Some of the houses I ride by in this neighborhood are amazing. This one was recently redone:


This one is being renovated and will be on the market soon, choose your paint colors now! (It says that on the sign, if you can see it)


I love the eclectic architecture in this neighborhood. Some houses are obviously different, like this one. On one street, there’s even a house that looks like a castle!


As I came out of the neighborhood onto Jollyville Road, the sky became blue… and I could see how the wind was pushing the clouds out. It was pretty awesome.



This was a really spectacular view, with the sun just on the edge of the cloud line:


On the road that brought me into my neighborhood, the clouds were all spread out.


And luckily I made it home without any more flats. I guess I’ll be changing that front tire too because I would like to avoid flats for the remainder of this training season!

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