Dean put out the call early this week for a running of his Tarheel 200 Permanent. With temperatures forecast to rise into the mid 70's in the middle of November, well that was just too hard to turn down. Since this was the last real "free" weekend around my household, I jumped at the chance.
With a 7am start, it meant we had the potential to finish before dark. 8 riders signed on for the fun: Dean, Tom, Mary, John, Janice, Andy, Geof a myself. We were greeted with temps in the low 50's for the start and thick patchy fog. We all stayed pretty closely together through the first two controls. The fog finally burned off by the time we rolled into Steadman.
Shortly after Steadman, Tom, Mary, John, Geof and I broke away for a brisk run into the turn around. On the final turn to the turn around, we lost Tom -- we weren't quite sure what happened. Mary road back to check on Tom. While hanging around the parking lot, a driver told us he'd seen a rider go down just a mile or two back. Must be Tom. Doesn't sound good
John, Geof and I had a bit to eat at the control and began the return trip. Just a little bit down the road, we saw everybody else, Tom was up and riding and yelled out he'd had a flat. Not sure if he went down or not, but we all hope he's OK.
The three of us stayed together for the rest of the afternoon, rolling in to the finish a few minutes before 5pm. Finished with sunglasses on.
Altogether, an absolutely wonderful day in the saddle. Given the weather we had on the last Lake Loop, this was like riding in heaven.
Happy trails, everyone!