This year, several of us from work and a friend from a previous job rode the AZ MS150. Since our riding and fitness levels vary, we rode in small groups rather than forcing everyone to ride in a large one.
The first day of the AZ MS150 started out a bit on the cold side, but was otherwise perfect riding weather. Starting from Cesar Chaves High School (Baseline & approximately 40th Avenue), we took our time, stopping for a moment at each SAG stop, and still managed to arrive at the Gila Bend High School in Gila Bend about an hour earlier than in years past.
After pitching our tents and showering at the school, we had an opportunity to check out the Desert Shrimp Festival that also happened to be at Gila Bend that weekend. The MS team provided all of us riders with an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner while we listened to SRP’s Second Shift Band.
Sunday morning, we were up early, packed up camp and had breakfast provided by the “Pancake Guys” … unfortunately, I can’t remember their real name, but they’re a couple of guys from Iowa that produced hundreds (thousands?) of pancakes on a couple of custom made, 8-foot griddles. The hard part was trying to catch your cakes when they were flipped several feet into the air to you.
Unfortunately, Sunday’s ride was not like Saturday’s, we had to contend with a nasty wind out of the Northeast — against us almost the entire way. Needless to say, this made the ride back very tiring, although we were able to join a couple of pace lines which helped ease the force of the wind. It took two hours longer to make it back to Cesar Chaves than it did to go to Gila Bend the day before.
All in all, it was a good ride. I think my riding partner and I exceeded our personal best, especially considering the nearly total lack of training we did beforehand.