Outdoor adventures, mostly gravel rides, but not always

Flying Wheels++

The Cascade Bicycle Club Flying Wheels course with the addition of two transport stages along 520

By the Numbers

139 miles
6695 feet
Moving Time

A group from Seattle I had toured around BI a year ago had been planning a ride of the Flying Wheels 100M route for a few months, being pushed off by a number of factors. Finally this weekend, albeit without perfect weather, we were able to ride the course. To mix it up, we opted to ride it backwards and, with inspiration from Jan from BQ, I rode two transport stages as well.

The ride from Colman Dock to Marymoor was uneventful and I was really happy to have ridden it recently so I knew the route and didn’t stress making it to Marymoor on time.

During the ride I felt my rear tire was a bit low on air and fortunately happened upon a group from Fount Cycling Guild getting ready for a ride of their own. I was able to borrow a pump and get the rear tire back to the 38PSI I was accustomed to feeling. I was a little envious of all their high-end, fast looking machines; I imagine they were flying when in the peloton.

After meeting Mike & Demian and a little prep we were off. The century ride per Mike’s write up:

We departed from Marymoor at 8:15am this morning. We rode the FW100 in reverse, a big CCW loop. This took us S along the E shore of Lake Sammamish past Snoqualmie falls (twice) and Fall City, then N through Carnation to Cathcart, then S through Maltby, Paradise Valley and E Redmond, then back to Lake Sammamish and Marymoor. The route has some nice scenic parts, and other parts along main thoroughfares where cars are zooming past at 60 mph and there ain’t much room on the side.

I ride alone so frequently it took some time acclimating myself to riding with others. I loved sitting on wheels but when I wasn’t I was, I learned later, pulling a too hard lol. It was good to mix up my riding style and I rode harder than I might have on my own knowing I could sit on if necessary. One downside of group riding: fewer (no!) photographs from the ride.

As for the route itself, I prefer quieter roads with fewer cars whizzing by with almost no shoulder. I’m also no fan of riding in the city I learned. I get antsy for new roads to ride off the peninsula but more often than not I find myself longing for my local farm roads or riding through the mountains.

Speaking of quiet, my front rotor must be slightly bent because it was squealing all day unless I was riding above ~10MPH. It was driving me nuts and needs to serviced before I next ride.

One of the highlights of the day was finishing the century ride on a velodrome just like Paris-Roubaix! I had never been on a velodrome before and after a few moments of anxiety on the bank I settled in and really enjoyed the experience – definitely something I want to try again.

I felt strong throughout the day until I hit 24th Avenue in Seattle heading up the hill to Madison. I finally started to feel the fatigue and was really looking forward to rolling down to the ferry.

By the time I got home I was wiped out. I had a few bites to eat and went to bed.


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