The adventurous morning started with me getting chased by three stray dogs on Wuquan South Road as I was about to cross into Dali District. Fortunately, the dogs were no match for me on the bicycle.
5:15 - we set off from the OK convenience store on the corner of Wenxin South Road and Zhongtou Road.
Heading south on Zhongtou Road toward Wufeng District
Coming off the bridge between Dali and Wufeng districts was a very unusual incident. It is quite common at daybreak to have small, low-flying birds whipping under the bridge. There was a small flock of birds flying just in front of us as we were coming down the ramp from the bridge - surprisingly close. Then suddenly, something bumped up on me just above my right-side chest. I looked back and saw a small bird writhing on the ground. I think it was dead. Nothing I could do coming down the ramp at more than 40 kph, but since I love birds, once I got over the initial shock, I was pretty sad about it.
Still, the workout was on and I was one of three riders who were pushing the pace pretty hard on the morning. In Fenyuan, we were pushing 50 kph and really we were having a great ride. Three of us broke away toward the turn-around and raced for the line, which I won by just half a wheel.
Looking toward the mountains from the turnaround in Changhua City
We took it easy for about 3km after the turnaround to catch our breath and collect everyone who had been dropped over the last few km.
Sign at the turnaround in Changhua
7km marker on route 14 in Changhua
It was here that I decided that the rest period was to end. I pushed up the pace not especially hard, but enough to send the message that the recovery period was over and that it was time to get back to work. The others answered and off we were for the return ride.
Maoluo River in Fenyuan
While we were riding fairly briskly, I took out the camera to snap a shot looking south at the Maoluo River. While we don't do this route for the scenery, there are definately nice aspects to the ride. Not only is traffic relatively light on most of the route, there are some nice scenic spots that can be enjoyed.
Looking toward the mountains from the bridge between Caotun Township and Wufeng District
I took a little bit of a risk to grab this shot. This is an area where the pace usually gets picked up for the last 12 of the ride. And, unfortunately, this is exactly where one of the riders decided to make a push and I quickly fell more than fifty meters behind while getting this shot. It took me about 3 km of hard work to regain the pack. No more pics after this. Hard riding the rest of the way.
We finished the 55km ride in 1 hour 35 minutes - the fastest I have been on this route. We had a great ride and I love riding with these guys. If you want to ride with us, see is at the OK in Dali at 5:15 in the morning.
The Wednesday morning bike route