Yesterday, Dad and I went on a ride for a guy in Goochland who was found dead on the side of the road. No one knows what happened, so the money from the ride is being used to fund a reward for details. The ride went from Crozier to Zion Crossroads to Buckingham and back to Crozier. There were 22 bikes, only a few of which had two people on them. There was one BMW and at least two Hondas. The rest were Harleys. This first picture is of the bikes lined up before we headed out (actually, so is the last picture, but that one is from the back, obviously).
Our first leg was from Crozier to Zion Crossroads. We went out to 250 and rode that the whole way to the Crossroads. The interstate might have been faster, but we weren’t out for speed and I think it’d be hard to keep a group that large together on the interstate. Besides, it was a pretty day for a ride! It took about an hour to get there, by which point, my back was starting to feel tight. I was glad for the rest, but glad to be back on the bike about 10 minutes later for the second leg of the trip.
The second leg went from Zion Crossroads down into Buckingham County on 15. I was on the shoulder side of the lane when we crossed the bridge over the James River, so I got to sneak a few glances of the river as we crossed. It seemed to be pretty high, but I may have just been creating that feeling, as I’m not as familiar with the James River as the bodies of water nearer Charlottesville. We stopped in Buckingham County and, even though I think I could have made it back with the gas I had, I topped off to make sure there weren’t any problems. We had about 10 minutes again and the tension was back in my muscles.
The third leg was from Buckingham back to Crozier. There wasn’t a whole lot to comment about on the roads on the ride other than that they were really pretty. They weren’t too challenging, which I appreciated, as I haven’t been on my bike in about three months (long story). The one part I was worried about was when I saw a sign that said “grooved pavement ahead.” I ran into that once on 250 when they were resurfacing the road and I was so uncomfortable I said that if I could help it, that was something I would avoid in the future. Fortunately for me, grooved road in this case just means that it was a little bumpy. On our way back across the James, I was on the inside part of the lane, so I didn’t get quite as good a look at the river as I did on the way out.
When we got back to Crozier, the sponsors of the ride fed us: hamburgers and hot dogs. I have to say that after a ride, a hamburger slathered with ketchup and mustard is the best thing on the planet. It just seems to hit the spot for some reason. We hung around for a while after the ride was over, but we were one of the first to leave.
The thing that I was most pleased about with the ride was how comfortable I was on my bike. I was a little afraid that having been off my bike for so long would make things difficult, but it wasn’t actually too bad. I had some rocky starts, but the corners (which can be really frustrating sometimes) didn’t work too much against me. I managed to keep up with the pack most of the time and didn’t really feel like I was holding people up most of the time. I asked Dad after the ride if he could compare it to the ride we did in November and he said I did much better. I guess I didn’t write about that one. After the ride was over, he told me that I ought to try to get more comfortable riding closer to other people to keep the group more together. I didn’t really think I did that much better with that, but I did try. I sometimes got distracted by my thoughts and just started following at my normal distance. Then, I’d realize that I was further behind than I ought to be and hurried to catch up.
Overall, the ride on yesterday was a lot of fun. The roads were pretty, the weather was amazing, the group was small and well-managed. I’m not sure what more you could ask for!