Emerald Bike Ride (May 28, 2017)

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emerald_bike_ride_coverConditions: Road Bike Trip
Gear: Nothing Special
Map: n/a
Area: Seattle, WA
Reference: n/a
Stats: 25.38mi, 1424' gain (round trip)

I had been thinking about doing this ride all year. I don't know what took me so long to sign up. I did manage to register online before the deadline and I'm glad I did.

I was up early. I wanted to 1) beat the heat, 2) make sure I could get garage parking nearby, and 3) beat the crowds. I think I succeeded. The alarm went off at 3:30am (ouch), I didn't have much to pack, I just needed to get the bike loaded on the back of the car. After a quick breakfast (no time for coffee) I was on the road southbound by 4:30am (ouch...again).

I arrived at the start line. Roads were closed so finding the exact method to get to the Safeco Field Garage were a bit hit or miss. I finally figured it out, paid my entrance fee ($10) and found a spot. One last gear check, and I headed around the corner to the start line.

At 5am the area was already buzzing with people. I registered late enough that I had to pick up my rider's packet on site. I did that and headed off to the start line.

Somehow I managed to forget to charge my phone overnight. I was only able to snap off three photos and the phone went dead. Rats. Now what was I going to do without a camera? Then it hit me...I had one on my head. Steve had loaned me his GoPro! I waited to turn it on. The instructions said about 2.5hrs on a fully charged battery. I figured my ride would be about 2.5 hours. A few minutes before the 6am start I turned it on. There were a couple of speakers and then we were off!

I did get close enough to the front of the line that I got caught on the Cascade Bike Club video that was posted to Instagram. Sweet!

The road headed north on main arterials, then jumped onto the I-5 northbound express lanes. Those were completely dedicated to riders. We continued north to the U-District, back onto the surface streets for a bit, a ride over the Montlake Bridge, and then time to get onto 520 eastbound (again...eastbound was closed to cars).up  We got off 520 at 84th and at about 12.2 miles hit the 1/2 way food stop (port-o-poties, water, snacks) and then wound our way over surface streets through Medina and then Bellevue before picking up the westbound express lanes on I-90 (closed to cars) where we rode over the northern part of Mercer Island and then the big floating bridge span over Lake Washington. Right before hitting floating bridge section the battery in the GoPro died. Darned. The route finished up back where we started (south of Safeco Field).

I didn't have a watch on me but I think I finished a few minutes after 8am. So that's about 2 hours for 25 miles. Not stellar. Not bad either.

I didn't linger for the after ride party. I was looking forward to just getting home.

A huge thanks goes out to Cascade Bike Club. This was a great ride, well planned. we supported. You did well. Also, a big thanks to all the local law enforcement. They men and women were stationed at nearly every single intersection and did a wonderful job. I tried to say thanks to each group as I passed but I know I missed some.
Emerald Bike Ride Slideshow

emerald_bike_ride_map cue_sheet front cue_sheet_back
(click on map to view a larger version)

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Copyright Janet M. Putz
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