Tuesday, June 11, 2013
That was the nature of my ride Sunday, steady state, on the gas 99% of the time. A loop I do a couple times a year links up the Ashuelot, Fort Hill and Cheshire dirt rail trails with some hilly gravel roads into a 50 mile loop. In the first 90 minutes, there is about 50ft of climbing. The sometimes soft rail bed and self-created wind resistance are your motivators for power. With no descents, there are no let-ups, save for a few road crossings you'd best exercise caution at.
The 2200ft of climbing happens on 10 miles of mostly gravel roads between Brattleboro, VT and Keene, NH, late in the ride. I usually ensure my legs are wobbly by then for maximum effect. The route is perfect for a 'cross bike. Occasionally I bring a 29er hardtail though, as I can explore interesting side options. After a deluge over the weekend, I couldn't subject my almost new Trek Cronus to the mud I'd no doubt would encounter. My Superfly hardtail is way past due for drivetrain replacement, so why not get one more messy ride out of it? The cassette, rings and chain have been sitting on the bench for a while now awaiting swap-out.
I completed the loop in record time for any kind of bike I've taken there and in less than ideal conditions. I felt it too. Wrecked. I went into the Keene Shaw's supermarket to pick up a sandwich and maybe some chocolate milk. In the natural beverages cooler where the iced tea was, I noticed Mountain Dew. Huh? Closer inspection revealed glass bottles with retro labeling. That's odd, I thought. Then I read the ingredients label. No High Fructose Corn Syrup, only sugar! Sporadically, Pepsico has market a "Throwback" version of Mountain Dew made with sugar, not HFCS. I grew up on the stuff in the 1970's before HFCS found its way into everything. I'm not one of the subscribers that HFCS is inherently more evil than sugar. All simple sugar is evil except in limited situations. What I do like though, is sugar sweetened Mountain Dew. It tastes different, better. Cleaner finish to it, not as heavy of a syrupy feel to it. It was kind of expensive, and I certainly don't need a case of that around the house, so I bought only one bottle and savored it on my way home. Nice treat to cap off a satisfying ride.