I’ve been researching my route for my Saturday adventure. It has been in my mind for a long time that I want to ride the 35 miles to the sanctuary, and I think I’m finally ready. Sorrow’s encouragement / excitement happened to be just what I needed to push me over the edge from dreaming to planning. Ready or not, I’m doing it this Saturday. I’ll have an extra day to recover thanks to the long weekend, and a shorter week following to bike to and from work. Even if I’m wiped out from the adventure, I should be able to get through the following week’s commuting.

I found enough routes on sites like Bikely that I’m now comfortable with how I’ll get there.

Here’s the map of my planned route:

map to sanctuary

map to sanctuary

And here’s why it is only after 10 months of biking 120 hilly miles/week that I think I might be ready:

elevation graph for trip to the sanctuary

elevation graph for trip to the sanctuary

By the time I get home, I’ll have climbed 4600 ft (and thankfully descended 4600 ft as well), in addition to my normal Saturday workout of hauling buckets of water and poop!

Still contemplating how I will bring my camera (the big one, not the p&s) and whether I’ll need muck boots. Whether I should bring a full change of clothes, and how much food. A lot of food, I’m thinking.

35 hilly miles. I’m budgeting 3 hours, thanks to the hills! And that’s just one way…

The neat aspect about planning this trip, and looking at it on a map, I really get a feeling of going somewhere on the bike. Utility cycling is what appeals to me, is what gets me excited. It is wonderful to feel fit, to know that my body can power me just about anywhere I want to go, but what trips my heart in excitement is having transported myself from place A to place B on my bike. Even now, after these 10 months of bike commuting, I feel a little ping of excitement every time I arrive at work or at home from my commute. “I did that!” a little part of me sings.

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