Bikes, Burgers, Beer, WIND and more WIND it the best way to sum up the Bunyan's to Bob's ride.
At 8:00 I arrived at Bunyan's, being the first one there I went for a quick spin around the neighborhood. By 8:15 rollers began to arrive and we settled into bar stools to await the 9:00 start time. In the mean time beer was drank, conversation was had and ceiling tiles were signed.
Ceiling Tiles Signed?? Bunyan's has started a tradition of signing their removable ceiling tiles. The Bunyan's to Bob's ride has it's own tile and was signed by all the riders, look for pictures on other blogs, I'm sure it will show up.
At 9:00 we were ready to roll, and roll we did with a brisk wind at our back we quickly made it to the bridge where we lost those crazy mountain bikers. Good time was made. We were easily rolling at about 22-24 mph with the ever increasing wind at our back. We pulled into Ponca and the group I was with decided on a quick pit stop. The small gas station/lumber yard/farm supply store had Orange Crush soda in a glass bottle, we couldn't resist. After downing our Orange Crush we were out the door with thoughts of burgers running through our brains. The last 7 miles into Martinsburg were a bit more of a challenge but only a small taste of the pain we would get to experience on the way home.
We made our way into Martinsburg and rode up to Bob's bar, the bar with no beer. The no beer was probably a good thing as we would need all the water we could partake of for the ride home. Burgers, cheeseballs and fries were ordered. The pyramid of cheeseballs arrived first, one order easily taking care of the 9 people at our table. Next it was the burgers or should I say sides of beef on a bun. The burger itself is right around 6 to 7 inches across the bun it about 3 to 4 inches across, meaning you eat about a pound of beef before you even get to the bun. It really isn't a bun but a beef delivery system. Much food was consumed, we would need every calorie of it as the worst wind I have ridden in for quite some time was soon to greet us.
Rollers left Martinsburg a bit spread out but we all soon grouped up at the gas station in Ponca. A pace line of around 10 rollers left Ponca and headed off to do battle with the wind. A 12 to 14 mph pace was established by Travis K. who would pull us all the way to Newcastle. Thanks again Travis. As I glanced back our pace line was beginning to fall apart the wind was knocking people out left and right. What was a nice long pace line soon dwindled down to 5 rollers. Finally we made Newcastle were we found air conditioning and a wonderfully nice poppy selling lady at the local gas station. Poppies were purchased and the cool air was enjoyed.
After Newcastle our pace line was thinned even more, now the group I was in was down to the kErnEl, the Muscle and myself. We decided to try to hold on to our 12 mph average and made our way out of town. About 2 miles out we heard a loud pop or bang, the Muscle's derailleur had exploded, pieces parts where everywhere. A call was made to Laura, the emergency sag driver, and a Muscle rescue was on the way. The kErnEl and I waited for the rescue wagon and what once was a 10 person pace line was now down to 2.
The kErnEl and I battled the wind together and caught up with Ed F., The Mayor and Evie. They had passed us while we were picking up the pieces of the Muscle's ride. We stopped at the Dakota Street corner to group up, have a drink and ride the last few miles in together. We finally made it back into Vermillion. The beer never tasted so good.
Looking back at the ride the only thing I can think of is.....
WHEN CAN WE DO IT AGAIN