|Pilgrims Checking in at Spirit Rock|
|Sukho on his Bridgestone XO-2|
|folks at Cheese Factory|
|Drafting behind the Tandem|
|Two Rock Church|
|Sae Tae Win II lunch stop|
We chatted and rode north on another stretch of the West County Trail to Forestville, then rolled toward Russian River on River and Wholer Road. We crossed the river and turned east on Westside Road toward Healdsburg. As we chatted I found out that Rachel actually goes to the same Gym (Ironworks) as I do and attends the same spin classes. We stopped on Middleton Farm and rested some, then continued toward Cloverdale. West Dry Creek Road is one of my favorite roads in Sonoma County, and after cross the river on Lambert Bridge, we turned north on Dry Creek Road. It was approximately 2:45 at this point, and it was definitely getting hotter, but still quite bearable even with my long-sleeve base layer.
|Shadow Panda on River Road|
|Riding on HWY 101|
|Sunset View on Old River Road|
|Sequoia at CTTB|
At the end of the day, my tally was 114 miles. I have never missed participating in this event since its inception, and my experience varied from year to year. Some years I wasn't physically ready and suffered some. Some years in extreme heat I dragged myself to the end of the day on both days. In the last couple of years I have been in good shape, and the relatively cool weather helped me to have physically pleasant two days on the bike. But every year I have always felt the great and warm energy from everyone participating in this year's event. This year especially I felt Lauren's great enthusiasm and warm, caring energy permeated the whole event on this first day. It was a beautiful day!