Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Century Cycles Night Ride - 08/07/10

So, you call yourself a cyclist?  Well, what do you think about riding at night?  And I'm not talking about casually tooling around your brightly lit neighborhood, but rather, cruising along the pitch black trails of a national park with about 150 other cyclists to boot?  Sound like fun? Well, that's what you can expect on one of the many Night Rides organized by Century Cycles in Peninsula, Ohio.  These rides typically take place every other weekend during the Summer and into the early Fall.  They start promptly at 8:00pm and are short rides of no more than 15 miles total.  Of course, the best part of the ride takes place after the Sun sets!
Typical crowd size for our Night Rides.

This past weekend was exceptionally fun as I got to ride with some of the younger guys from the Century Cycles store I work at in Medina. 
Russ, from the Medina store, sportin' the frat boy look.
"I AM SPARTA!!!"  Well, ummm, with a smile.

Chris, also from the Medina store, with girlfriend Mary.
Right out of the gate, we blew past most of the riders and charged to the front of the line, all the while challenging each other with breakaways and fixed gear spin-outs.  Unfortunately, my 44 year old legs started to show their age as I was eventually 'dropped' unceremoniously by those same young whipper-snappers just a couple of miles from the halfway point!!

On the return leg, the Sun had finally settled below the horizon, and only the dancing head and taillights of 150 riders illuminated the inky black trail ahead.  This time, I ground down on the pedals and raced towards the finish, determined to get the better of those pesky younglings (Star Wars reference there).  As I passed other cyclists riding "bumper to bumper", it reminded me of the traffic lines filing out of the Jake after an Indians game...well, back when the Indians were, you know, good. 


Speaking of those dancing headlights, we were fortunate enough to have some representatives from NiteRider, the company that actually makes several high-end headlights for biking, handing out light kits for our cyclists to test on the trail.

Again, as these rides are relatively short, we finished around 9:30pm.  Of course, all good night rides must end with alcohol, so the whole gang tromped over to the Winking Lizard across from the Century Cycles store for beer, wings, and great company.  Unfortunately, I had to bow out of the post-ride festivities this time, but I assure you, they had a blast inside all the same.  Occasionally, someone will even bring a classic cult movie like 'Godzilla vs something' or, in the case of this evening, "Monty Python and the Holy Grail"!

So, if you get the chance, be sure to join us on one of the remaining Night Rides.  For a list of dates, check out our website at

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