Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Harvest Century (9/28/14)

My season of cycling wrapped up this past weekend with one last event. In fact, the Harvest Century is touted as "The Last Organized Ride of the Year!"

Earlier this summer, I convinced Dad to train along with me with the 45-mile route as our goal. Dad has some arthritis in his low back that makes walking and running fairly painful. But cycling feels great, and this was good motivation for him to keep moving throughout the summer. 

Sunday finally arrived, and it was time to ride! The event started and ended in downtown Hillsboro. After picking up our bibs and T-shirts (free to the first 500 registrants!), we grabbed a little granola for second breakfast. I topped mine with soymilk while Dad opted for the yogurt. Yay for free food!
Mom and Eryn saw us off at the starting line before heading to Seattle to catch the last home Mariners game:
The first rest stop was just 12 miles in. This was Dad's first organized bike ride (other than Bridge Pedal, which is a whole different animal), and I kept telling him about all the food. He was starting to catch on when he saw the spread laid out for us on this private farm:
The route was fairly flat with just 1,200 feet of elevation gain in 45 miles. The only bigger hills were between the two rest stops. So 13 miles later, we'd tackled all the big hills and it was time to eat again!

The second stop was at Montinore Vineyards, a gorgeous spot on top of a hill:
While you can't tell in the photo, we could see Mount St. Helens across the way:
Each ride we've done has been unique, including the food. This one had tiny baked potatoes covered in butter and salt. YUM!
The obligatory picture with the vines:
And Dad with his bike:
And my sweet road bike, which I've yet to name. Suggestions??
One thing I thought was so cool about this ride was the course markings:
It was so well marked, and these little guys made me smile each time I saw one :)

Action shot:
And finally, approaching the finish:
This one included lunch at the end - and it was quite a spread!

Green salad, potato salad, corn on the cob, chips, cake, chocolate milk, apple cider and sausages with all the toppings. I was so happy that they had veggie sausages, too!! 
In all, we rode 47 miles (including getting to and from the car) at a 12.6 mph average:
Pretty good!

This was a great event - good price, well supported, great food, beautiful course. Plus, I always love adventuring with my dad :)

Next year the 75, Dad?? :)

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