Monday, April 14, 2014

Dry Run: Long Commute Home (Route 1)

I'm not a serious rider and usually do my transportation riding close to home, but I got it into my head that I would attempt the 15+ miles from work to home. Last summer I would do the multi-modal commute on the Brompton to cover the ~3.25 miles between the Metro and work, but I had never done the full commute. I actually envisioned doing this next year after the Betty is built up, but D pointed out that Bromptons are capable of handling the distance even when loaded down with gear--people have even toured with them. So, with D's support, some advice from a committed long-distance bike commuter colleague, and the promise of a nice weekend, I decided I would attempt a "dry run" (terminology per my colleague).

The ride was also a good opportunity to try out the Cellet phone mount for my bike that D got me last Christmas, and the Map My Ride app. Before, if I didn't want to take the route that Google gave me, I would have to print out a map that I could refer to it on my ride. Now that I have the phone mount and the app, I could pre-set my route and then follow it on the app as I rode. It's not quite turn-by-turn directions, but it's a much better setup than what I had before (through I do love printed maps).
At my starting point, fully equipped for my dry run
I had planned on riding only one way of the commute, and my colleague wisely advised me to take the Metro up to work, then ride my bike from the Maryland side and down to DC. Good thing too, because although I survived the day's roughly 20 miles of riding (a lot for me), my legs were dead tired by the end of it. A day later, neither my legs nor my backside were noticeably sore, though I suspect I caught a cold. Overall, I'm glad I did the dry run, even though I don't know that I'll be doing the full commute on a regular basis anytime soon. 

Below the cut, my "ride" notes and my "route" notes for the two parts of my ride.