I had a shit ride today.
I rode part of the 60 mile El Tour de Tucson route, but without race flags, the bike routes are very poorly marked. I spent most of my time staring at a map and backtracking after going down bike routes that would just randomly stop (as pictured above). Also, I lost my map halfway through...
Usually, even during a shit ride, I can entertain myself and it ends up being okay... But today was one of those rides that was just shit, zero silver lining. The route sucked, traffic -even on narrow desert foothill roads- was heavy, the winds were brutal. So after 20 miles, I threw in the towel and started to make my way back to where I had parked.
I drove myself to Barrio Brewey to have a beer and hit reset on my bad attitude. I began thinking- what do people usually do when they have a shit ride? Do you just throw in the towel and try again later? Do you push through it? Usually no matter how bad the weather or route or ride, there is some silver-lining to be found. That may be a whole other post….
I have ridden Tucson and enjoyed it in the past, but it was always with people who knew what they were doing - either for El Tour or with native Tucsonans. But when I've gone it alone, it's always been a bust.
When I discussed this with a friend, she said:
Huh, that's weird - Tucson has a huge cycling community...
And she's right! People come from all over the world to train in Oro Valley and up Mt Lemmon… there are great rides and routes - you just have to know where they are. So maybe that is the take-away here is that Tucson can be a great ride, but only if you know what you are doing.
Weather: Sunny, warm, 80F