Sunday, Kevin, Erin and I rode the 32 miles and 2,400 feet of elevation gain that defines the Chilly Hilly on Bainbridge Island. We rode to the ride. The Seattle ferry terminal is seven miles from our homes. We bundled up and enjoyed calm roads to the ferry.
The 8:45 AM ferry was dedicated to bikes. We rode onto the ferry and laid them flat for the short trip. Here we warmed up, checked our number bibs and used the restroom before docking where the actual ride started. The atmosphere aboard the ferry was very light, fun, and party like. I did not see any of my Crush Kids Cancer group but the passenger deck was packed.
The ride was very crowded for the first ten miles. Riders were very courteous throughout the route. We often occupied the full width of the lane or road. Locals cheered us on and set up cookie stands at their driveways. I stopped for one and was not allowed to pay. The homemade chocolate chip macadamia nut cookie really hit the spot. We rode without a single mechanical or incident. In fact, the only injury I know of involved a tree trimmer and his chain saw thirty feet up a tree. He was calm enough to alert his coworkers of an injury, and he did not fall out of the tree. I hope he is ok.
After the ride we enjoyed a brew before heading down to the return ferry. There were so many bikes we did not fit on the first one. After a forty minute wait, we made the second. Our total ride was 48 miles and over 3,000 feet of climbing. This was Kevin's second Chilly Hilly and he really shined on the ascents. Erin, riding her first organized ride can proudly say she did not drive to the ride and never walked her bike up any of the cat 5 hills. What a great ride, thanks friends.