Day 3: South Beach - Shafer State Park
Distance: 92 miles
We kick off the morning bright and early. Mama Bean wasn’t playing around as he shook us all awake at 6 am sharp. We walk out into the brisk morning air to find that all the gear we were too tired to store away was soaked in the morning dew (Eagle Scout Matt’s raingear). We shook it off because it’s Dawg Saturday and if we made it to the campsite early, there were hopes that we could stream the game. We quickly ate, packed up, and departed the South Beach Campground.
We catch a series of flat stretches and incredibly smooth road. Josh promised that ride would be ‘mostly flat’ and for the first time we were benefiting from this. We were cruising at a really solid pace when we met up with Tony 20 miles into the ride. John’s knees and Cesar’s back starting showing signs of injury as we started up again, so Josh elected to stay back and ride a little slower with them.
We chugged along for another 30 miles or so, eagerly looking for Tony’s car. Josh was the only person with the map so David, Matt, Kyle, and Luis were banking on Tony parking at our next turn. Of course Tony was leisurely driving along the hillsides of Aberdeen as they sped past the correct turn and biked for another mile and a half. Once they realized their error, they had to go back uphill to find the correct turn.
We met for a quick lunch and as we were packing up Cesar presses his tire against the rim and asks the group ‘Wait is this a flat?’ After fixing his nearly completely deflated tire, we asked how long it has been flat. When he responded with ‘since this morning’, it was very apparent why he was dragging behind and straining his back. Cesar took off for the last 40 miles leading the pack and pain free.
When we drew closer to the campsite, we decided that the first person to get their could drink the last of the Elysians from the night before as a reward. David Juergens proceeded to take off at speeds equivalent to Lance Armstrong during the doping era and whipped everyone to the campsite. Matt and Kyle remained at a steady leisurely pace because having banter at the back of the pack seemed better then drinking a beer with inflamed quads.
We pulled into the campsite at 5 pm, leaving us with plenty of time to watch the Husky game. Our dreams were quickly crushed as we realized there was no service at the campsite but then immediately rejuvenated as our beloved driver Tony pulled 6 large Domino's Pizzas out of his car. We capped the rest of the night off by setting up hammocks and digesting our pizza in luxury. We talked, laughed, and shared our optimism for how easy we ‘thought’ the next day was going to be (we are clearly not foreshadowing anything).
With sore muscles and warm hearts,