Cherry Blossoms 2013

April 18, 2013

The day before, Becky, Charlotte and I went down to the tidal basin and walked around, both for exercise, and for sight seeing. It was chilly, early, and empty then, but today it was warm, in the afternoon, and crowded. Strapped on a couple bottles, grabbed a couple gels, and decided to go down to do a couple loops down at Hains Point and see what the Cherry Blossoms might bring. IMG_1189 I continued my luck of seeing odd exotic cars. Come ride with me and you'll see them. Being a nice day, it was again crowded on the W&OD trail, but also fairly empty on the Custis trail. Down at the parking lot at Teddy Roosevelt Island, I had to detour out of the trail: IMG_1190 Rode down to the Jefferson Memorial, where it was a zoo. Lots of people, lots of busses and cars, but conveniently, there was a lot of bicycle parking! IMG_1194 I walked around the memorial, and there were a couple more trees blossoming, but it was still disappointing. IMG_1191 I walked through the gift shop area, and found a long line of people waiting for the bathrooms. I had seen the portalets outside and wondered why they weren't using those? IMG_1192 IMG_1193 I stopped by the portalets, and realized that there was no toilet paper anymore, so not many people were using them. I took a nature break, then popped a gel before getting back on my bike and heading to do some laps. IMG_1195 Playing dodge-a-tourist, I pulled under 395 and started a lap...slowly. With so many people at the tidal basin, the traffic around Hains Point was thick. This was the first time I had to ride on the sidewalk on the top end of the loop, since it was backed up all the way back to the gate. What made it worth it was that though the Cherry Blossoms weren't blooming around the Tidal Basin, they were in force around Hains Point. IMG_1197 IMG_1198 After two loops, I was done with traffic, and decided to head home. I wasn't sure if I wanted to do a complete Arlington loop again, but decided to flog myself up the Rosslyn climb again, but decided to stop by CycleLife finally, since I had spied it when I rode the Vasa ride. I rode down Ohio, around the Lincoln Memorial, around to the Swedish embassy, and onto K street. Alas, Cyclelife was closed (5pm on a Sunday), so I tried to figure out a way to get up to Key bridge... Eventually had to bail out to M street, ride down to the Key bridge, and across. Probably not the smartest thing I've ever done, but with thick traffic, speeds were not a problem. Rode up from Rosslyn, and back up the Custis to the W&OD. Took it all the way to the base of Virginia Lane, and headed home. When I turned onto West, I was about 200 feet short of 2000 feet climbing on the day, so I detoured up around Woodley Place and Welcome Drive, and took a couple hills near the house to just put me over the mark by the time I got home.

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