Just over a week ago I was supposed to ride in the Connecticut Challenge - a 75mile ride through south eastern CT to raise money in support of Cancer. Unfortunately, days before the ride I became sick with a Stomach virus so was unable to participate.
However, given the very generous $$$s I had been pledged by my sponsors I committed to doing a solo ride the following weekend while we spent a relaxing weekend in New Hampshire with some friends.
We were staying at our friend's house on Sunset Lake, just south west of the largest lake in New Hampshire - Lake Winnipesaukee; so it seemed like an obvious choice to carve a route around the lake. My estimates had one loop of the lake close to the distance I was planning to ride and getting lost wouldn't be a problem as long as I kept the lake to me left at all times!
Waking up saturday morning I discovered the most beautiful right on our doorstep and couldn't resist going for a swim. I figured making the day a triathlon would add to the fun and the added swim would compensate for any lost miles if the ride turned out a little short :)
Who could resist this?
Following a mile swim I then embarked on the voyage around the lake. Foolishly I had not checked out the route between the house and Lake Winnipesaukee before I set off and 2 miles in I encountered a VERY long and fast descent down to the Lake shore. Hmmm...that 2mile delight was waiting for me in the opposite direction upon my completion of the loop - better make sure I get adequate nutrition!
The route as traced by my GPS watch:
Quite hilly! (Note: particularly high points at beginning and end of ride and lack of anything remotely flat in between!)
The ride proved to be very enjoyable. It was very picturesque with fantastic views of the lake and surrounding mountains and for the most part the roads were smooth.
The 2 mile climb at the end proved to be quite a beast but I didn't let it get the better of me. However, just as i crested the peak a cramp kicked into my left calf and I almost fell off my bike as the leg spasmed as I tried to unclip from my pedals. Although the remainder of the ride was more or less downhill this calf pull put an end to any hopes of completing the run with a triathlon and I had to settle for a 70.5 mile bike and 1mile swim instead.
Lake Winnipesaukee from the high point of the ride:
Thanks to all who generously made a donation and I hope the 71.5 mile swim/bike combo is an adequate alternative the the 75mile CT challenge. (I think I did at least emphasize the "challenge" despite being in the wrong state!)
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