Monday, June 4, 2012

BRAG Day 2.......

It stormed in the night last night, and I felt sorry for those poor schmucks in tents. We used to BE those poor schmucks in tents. The tent would leak, we would wake up in wet clothes, pack up a wet tent, get on wet bikes, and stay wet all day long. I did have a wet bike this morning, in spite of my best efforts to cover it up. I also locked it to the RV, but it was on the ground this morning. Those must have been some powerful winds.

It was raining slightly when we left camp this morning, and I thought we would be in store for a miserable day. It was never bad enough to put on the jacket I took with me, though, and it was actually nice for the temperatures to be cooler than usual. There were many, many, many hills, but we knew there would be. The only demoralizing thing was the fact that the route map said there would be a 3.3 mile climb. I crept up the hill and finally arrived at Rest Stop #2, glad the horrendous climb was behind me, only to be informed by other (sadistic) riders that the aforementioned climb hadn't occurred yet. I only said one bad word, though. In reality, the 3.3 mile climb wasn't nearly as bad as the one we had done earlier, which Rozmo said was around a 2-mile climb.

They put the RVs in a gravel parking lot far, far away from the main activities, but we lucked up and found an electrical outlet. Any night we can plug the RV in without having to run the generator is a bonus. Every minute that generator is on, I picture little dollar signs floating out of the exhaust pipe. (The generator runs off the same gasoline the RV uses. You know, the stuff approaching $4.00 a gallon? Yeah, that.)

A lot of BRAG locations offer a shuttle service to take riders to restaurants and hotels, and some of them are very efficient. Some of them are not. I don't know how many people they expected in this particular location, but they provided two shuttle vans, each one holding about 10 people. There are 900 people on this ride. Need I say more? We finally managed to get a shuttle TO town (the van said "Inmate Work Detail" on it, I kid you not), where we had Chinese food for dinner, but the shuttle was taking its sweet time coming back. A local lady with a special needs son offered to take us back to the recreation center. It is always very gratifying when things like that happen on BRAG, and it's pretty common that they occur. Some of the local folks are very welcoming and go out of their way to help us out (as in this lady), and some of them just wonder where the heck all those idiots on bicycles came from.

Tomorrow we will be in the Atlanta metro area, where we will trade mountains for traffic. I think I prefer the mountains myself. But we will be near the home of one of my high school friends, and we hope to have dinner with her. If I go call her right now and remind her that we will be there.

I didn't take many pictures today, mostly due to the rain and the gloomy weather and the fact that we were either struggling uphill or flying downhill, neither of which is very conducive to picture-taking. I will try to post my best BRAG photos when I get home this weekend.

For now, here is a visual of our route today.

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