Pythagorean Theorem

Trip Start Jun 04, 2011
Trip End Jul 26, 2011

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Flag of United States  , Missouri
Sunday, July 3, 2011

Flooded rivers made the equation for today's ride roughly:

Extra Distance = (a+b) - sqrt(a^2 + b^2)

That is to say, if you look on the map of St. Joseph on the upper right of this post and locate the town of Atchison to the Southwest (across the river in Kansas), you will notice a highway (59) that runs almost straight between the two cities. Let us call this path "c", the hypotenuse of today's riding right triangle. As we all know, the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Suppose, however, the bridge at Atchison is flooded; one must then find an alternate route. Ours was K-7 to 36, the (more or less) right triangle that runs North from Atchison, "a" (K-7) and then East into St. Joseph "b" (36). Needles to say, we were all a little bummed when we found out we had a change of plans. It had been a long day to that point and we weren't looking forward to any added distance.

The ride started in the rain. Lots and lots of warm but not hot rain. Thunder and lighting too. Under almost all circumstances, riding in this morning's weather would have been terrible - the worst thing imaginable. Sitting in my house in Westerville or my apartment at school, there is almost nothing that could motivate me to go out and ride in conditions like this morning's. However, on this ride I don't have a choice. I committed a long time ago to riding every day, rain or shine, and today was just one of those days. We moved slow, very slow, but we just kept moving forward. It stormed on us for a few hours; I was completely saturated and covered in road grime from the riders in front of me and the cars passing beside me. To make matters worse, we also had a headwind. 

We were able to tell ourselves for a while that we were happy to have any weather that wasn't pure heat like the day before. Eventually, we realized it we weren't. We stopped at the Dairy Queen in Atchison while the trip leaders figured out an alternate route. We may have been there for an hour or so, the faster riders were waiting there longer. Fortunately, the rain blew away and the sun came out while we were waiting

The remaining 40 miles or so from Atchison to St. Joseph were very, very pretty. We considered them bonus Kansas miles, and they may have been the prettiest. The rain made the air very clear and the colors very crisp. On K-7 there were lush green crops as far as the eye could see in every direction. The weather was in the 70s and it was sunny. It went from the worst of riding to great riding in the same day. There are always new challenges, and new surprises, on this trip.

Distance: 95.36 mi - 2,176.48 total
Time: 07:11:41 - 147:34:54 total
Elevation Gain: 3,550 - 72,759 total
Av. Speed: 13.3 mph - 14.7 overall
Av. HR: 113 bpm - 128 overall
Calories: 5,476 - 143,831 total

Flat Tire Count:
Scott - 7
Stephen - 3
Mark - 1

Rest Day:

We did nothing today. Literally nothing. We cleaned our bikes and bottles, chains and clothes. We walked to Panera, will walk to Applebees and ate breakfast at the hotel. And also, Scott dyed his nonexistent mustache and looks like a complete idiot. He did a terrible job with the dye and it has stained the ugliest sloppy rectangle onto the skin of his upper lip.

Flat Tire Count:
Scott - 7
Stephen - 3
Mark - 2
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theconcernedmom on

I love you Scotty!

Linda Huling on

Love the photo, "Done Hiding"! Congratulations to all three of you!!! What an accomplishment. When do you ride through Marysville, Ohio?

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