Ok, so how do am I supposed to take pictures while i ride? My hands are freezing, pockets are filled with bottles, arm warmers, chapstick, delicious snacks, and deep down inside, my phone in a ziplock. We can't stop for such things, we only stop for approximately one pit stop. I mean I took phenominal pictures in my mind! Riding through Hemet I saw an Ostrich, Beaumont a Hot Air Balloon in the back of a truck, Banning a couch. Which I in fact wanted to sit down on and take a nap.
Sometimes we set lofty goals. Most of the time we fall short. Sunday was not one of those days. Creating roughly 90.48 miles of riding, from Yucaipa-Hemet-Idyllwild-Banning-Yucaipa, we saw the world.
Riding up through the mountains was much more exciting than fearing for my life like I did last week on the back side of Oak Glen, dodging Apple Bobbers and Civil War Reinactments. Heading up the 79 or whatever it was, is super peaceful in comparision. The grade is not as drastic and the ample passing lanes make my life seem slightly more secure. Once you crest into Idyllwild, your stupid if you think you are done climbing. Enter the rollers near the tree line and subarctic climate (I had to put my arm warmers on, THIS is a big deal...) and giant Christmas trees ready for the taking. Lake Perris even looked inviting, from THERE.
When looking back, the most horrific terrible uncomfortable awful part of the ride was descending into Banning. For one reason. I could see Cabazon. And the windmills. And the Casino. It was already past 4 hours on the Garmin, and I know how far those dang windmills are. And why they are there, holy wind. My life was nearly lost 17 times due to massive gusts, leaving my hands literally numb at the bottom. Thankfully, the road wound west, away from Palm Springs. But it still dropped us straight onto the hot desert floor.
This ride was unique in that it was also un-chaperoned. Brian and I are usually flanked with good friends and teammates, but Sunday it panned out be just him and I. worked perfect for a date, we didn't have drive anywhere, spend money, get dressed up, or feel stuffy in any way. We also only spent about 75% of the time together, perfect for a date. I joke, I joke! But seriously, a much needed respite from the chaos that follows us. Riding in silence up huge mountains.
This ride is now my favorite. I hope winter stays away at least one more weekend, so we can go tackle it again.