This year’s Chilly Hilly (Map, Tick sheet) had even better weather than last year’s (10°F warmer), and none of the forecast rain. I took the first, “bikes only” ferry at 7:45. I’d love to know how many people were there, but it certainly was in the high hundreds. The inside of the ferry was packed with people, and the cacophony of voices was numbing.
The queue to the men’s room was easily 20 people long throughout the 35 minute ride. There’s also no food service because Sodexho Marriott terminated its contract the end of last year.
The route was the same as last year’s, which is good because my HRM is acting up, possibly because of a low battery on the transmitter. If you want the profile, use last year’s. I have a cycle computer, so I do know that my average speed was better than last year’s. I was hoping to meet Fran and Tom, but it’s hard to do with the throngs of people milling about. Doug W, one of my ex-coworkers didn’t show.
There were a few kids selling lemonade and pastries at tables offset from the side of the road. Most of the time I couldn’t read their signs, and didn’t know they were selling something until I passed. The ride’s so crowded that sudden movements are … dangerous. If you’re parents of one of those kids, my suggestion for next year: use a thick black marker, big letters, and short words like “FOOD.”
Half of the comments I received about my bike were jokes about the small wheels. This is the first event of the year, but I can tell there’s going to be a lot of repeats. A few of them were really funny and I ought to write them down.