2017 Hotter ‘N Hell Hundred

Yesterday, I rode in the 2017 Hotter ‘N Hell Hundred at Wichita Falls. For the 11th consecutive year, I completed the 100 mile route. I rode 100.75 miles, to be precise. My official timing chip finish time was 5:21. That was 11th in the 65 to 69 age division, a good time for me. There were a total of 3,358 people who finished the 100 mile route, 81 in my age and gender division.

My “on the bike” time was 5:17. I made two quick stops during the ride. The first was a two minute stop at mile 10 for a train (there’s great traffic control at HHH, but I don’t guess they can do anything about trains). The second stop was another 2 minute stop at mile 90 for my bladder, and to fill a water bottle. It was the nicest weather I’ve ever seen at HHH, cloudy and in the 70′s, with light winds, for the entire ride. I did not get the usual amount of dehydration from the ride, but I pushed the pace enough that my legs were toast at the end, just the same.

Around 10,000 signed up for the ride, but many did not show up. It was easily the smallest number of riders I’ve seen at HHH. It was obviously because of Hurricane Harvey. This, in spite of the fact that the last couple of days of forecasts before the ride were predicting no rain there for Saturday, and sure enough, it didn’t rain. I stayed at the First Christian Church gym again, but didn’t see anyone else I knew there, or even another recumbent bike or trike. I did enjoy a nice dinner Friday evening in Iowa Park, and got to visit with friends there (thanks, Brad!). But, it was still surprising to see so many people back out because of weather, only to then have the best riding weather I’ve ever seen at HHH.

I didn’t take any photos myself this year, so these are borrowed:

Getting ready for the start.

A local radio station announces the start.

There are lots of great signs along the route.

Hell’s Gate at mile 60.

Lots of interesting stuff at Hell’s Gate this year.

Friend Doug in his velomobile.

The route.

My timing chip results.

The medal for finishing.

Athens to Canton 80 Miles

I took off on the F-5 and rode to SH19, turned south to Athens, then rode north all the way to Canton. It’s a new route. Between the county roads getting rougher and rougher, and all the construction and new boulderseal on farm to market roads around here, riding the shoulder of larger highways like State Highway 19 suits me these days. I ended up with 80 miles for the day.

It was a hot one today, and I ended up with quite a bit of heat rash on my legs and back. That’s right; on some really hot days, I manage to get heat rash on my back in the perfect shape of the seat. The older I get, the worse the heat rash seems to get. Ah, the joys of aging.

I’ve been neglecting my blog again. I ended up with 520 miles total for June, not as much as I’d like, but I had 570 miles in July, a nice month. I did 30 mile rides on Monday and Friday of this week, so ended up with 140 miles for the week. I’m finally ahead of the pace I need to be on to make my goal of 5,500 miles for the year. August should be a good mileage month, as I ramp up my Saturday mileage, getting ready for the Hotter ‘N Hell Hundred on August 26th. I’ll try to do 80 mile Saturday rides on both Saturdays between now and then.

Today’s route.