06 May 2013

More Golden Week(end)!

After a Saturday rest day, Jerome and I went on another Golden Week ride on Sunday.  Given anticipated heavy traffic and the spectacular weather, it was time, again, to ride the rindos (forest roads), climbing hills on asphalt behind closed gates.
First ride on the Canyon in a couple weeks.  ... It is nice to be on a carbon framed racer with deep rim wheels once in awhile!

View to NE from Iriyama Pass -- between Wada and Itsukaichi
We made good time out to Itsukaichi, and chatted at the 7-11 there with 2 riders we had passed on the last leg (primarily by being a bit more aggressive at traffic signals, not because of any real difference in speed).  Once we mentioned that we ride Brevets, they immediately volunteered that they were preparing for Tokyo-Itoigawa, one proudly mentioned that he ride with Nalshima whose Kondo-san is Japan's fastest brevet rider and toppled Andy W. last year as Tokyo-Itoigawa champion.  They each had done Toito at least 15 times.

The Koinobori on west side of Wada -- listless in the breeze on Children's Day.
We stop to admire the koinobori.
Ready to continue the descent.
We rode Bonbori Rindo over Iriyama Pass, then Daigo Rindo up Wada Pass, down the back of Wada on Jimba Kaido, then up and over Hime Valley - Bijo Valley on its closed rindo, then back over Otarumi Pass on Route 20.  The rindos were wonderful -- only one car and one motorcycle during the entire time on Bonbori Rindo and Daigo Rindo.   We did not push the pace much until the last part of the ride -- but still got in excellent exercise with our four climbs.  Bijo Valley's road was strewn with rocks on the Southern descent, and each of Jerome and I experienced one flat tube.
On the last rindo, signs to Hime-tani, Fujino Station (via Jimba hotsprings), etc.
Golden Week traffic ... on the closed roads
We stopped for lunch of ramen and gyoza at the top of Otarumi Pass ... on what must be their busiest day of the year.  It was a long wait, but well worth it.

Another spectacular ride -- 4 passes and nearly 2000 meters of climbing, mostly on closed roads, and back home by 4PM, despite delays due to the flat tires and lunch.

No comments: