This was our seventh Horrible Hundred.
The Horrible Hundred is an annual ride put on by the Florida Freewheelers, a ride up and down the best hills of the Lake Wales Ridge. (The Lake Wales Ridge is what remains of a string of islands that existed eons ago.)
The weather was perfect. It was going to be a fun day. We pedaled away from our motel heading for the start. We were right on schedule. Then Al turned his head and said, "Guess what we forgot in the room. Our ride wristbands."
We pedaled back to the motel at full speed, got our stuff, and headed back. We'd missed the start. But the route ran around the lake then headed east toward the first big climb, North Ridge. The lake loop part didn't have much interest for us. We decided to skip it and join the route where it turned east on Pitt. What with our biking back and forth to our motel, we'll have done the same number of miles as the lake loop anyway. A perfect solution for us.
That was the start of a great ride. We decided to ride alone. The problem with riding in a group is that you can't look around and enjoy the scenery. You have to concentrate on the person in front you or risk an accident. Drafting makes the ride easier, but less interesting. So we kept to ourselves and happily went up and down the hills.
Each year it seems a bit easier. Even Sugarloaf.
And that's a very good thing.