Trans-Ohio Tour Safely and Successfully Complete!

The Trans-Ohio Tour was this past weekend, and it went great!

We dealt with a few mechanical problems, but there were zero injuries and no major problems.

Day 1:  We rode 88 miles from Richmond, Indiana to West Jefferson, Ohio in 5 hours 30 minutes.  It was a 90 degree day out on the open road.  The day was long and hot, but we made it through.

I found that I really hit my stride at about 79 miles and felt like I could have ridden forever (or delirium was setting in), but I’m glad we stopped where we did.

Thanks to Tom and Karen Pauquette of the Grove City Vineyard for feeding us on Friday night!

Day 2: 75 miles from West Jefferson, Ohio to Zanesville, Ohio.  This 5 hour 4 minute day was wet.

Fortunately, we never encountered any hard rains, but it sprinkled steadily for the first 4 hours.  We always seemed to be there a few minutes behind the hard rain, which meant plenty of tire spray and sopping wet feet.

In addition to the antagonizing rain, it wasn’t the easiest course.  The second half of Licking County and most of Muskingum County has some substantial hills.  Not the biggest we encountered on the trip, but definitely some of the steepest.

Grandma Rita’s house outside of Zanesville was a welcome sight when we finally made it.  Dinner was pizza and spaghetti at Adornetto’s.

Day 3:  This was a 75 mile, 5 hour 20 minute adventure through Eastern Ohio, and my favorite day.  Once you get past Cambridge, the scenery is amazing and the quaint small towns like New Concord, Salesville, Quaker City and Bethesda are fantastic.

The course was complex because U.S. 40 actually combines with I-70 for about 25 miles, which meant we needed to find an alternate route.  It was nice to make some turns for a change, and we didn’t get lost, but we did end up on 4 miles of gravel, dirt, broken concrete closed road between Quaker City and Barnesville.  We ended up walking over several parts that our skinny road tires couldn’t handle.

Finally we got back to Route 40, and stopped at the Fastlane Cafe, a docile sort of biker bar with really bad cheese pizza that tasted delicious after 55 miles of hills.

Then we climbed, and climbed.  There were 7 more giant hills past where I thought I couldn’t take any more, but we powered through.  Then the reward came.  The last 6 miles were downhill.

Not only were they downhill, but 6 miles out we crested a mountain and then began a terrifying, steep mile and a half descent.  Riding the brakes the whole way down, we averaged about 32 mph.  In hindsight, I wish we would have opened it up, but not knowing what was around the next twist, caution was probably the smart move.  This was the most amazing downhill I’ve ever ridden.

We reaped the rewards of all of our climbing, and graciously pedaled it in and over the Ohio River to Wheeling Island!

This was a fantastic trip and a truly rewarding, but thoroughly testing experience.  Congratulations to Jonathan Youngman and Wes Black, who both put forth tremendous effort, your dedication to The Water Cycle Project is fantastic.

We spent 16 hours on a bicycle seat, pounding through the monotonous flats, steep hills and curving ascents of Ohio as a demonstration of our love for the people of India.  Please consider honoring this demonstration by making a donation to The Water Cycle Project today.  Even a small amount will change lives forever.  :-)  Click here to give.

Final Stats:
Total Distance: 238.13 miles
Total Time: 15 hours 54 minutes 45 seconds

Stay tuned for pictures!