S24O

Sorry for the terrible delay, but I'm finally getting around to posting about the S24O that Marcus and I did in June (!).  We did an S24O (Sub-24-hour-Overnight).  We rode from our houses to meet-up at Minnehaha Falls, had lunch at Sea Salt (where we were surprised by a bonus platter of calamari - can't let any of that go to waste!), and from thence to Afton State Park.

This was the route, more or less.  I say "more or less" because I got us kind of lost in St Paul, and we ended-up running into Holman Field ... Anyway, it wasn't a bad trip, except for the low-speed low-side wreck in Lilydale due to really slippery mud washed over the trail.  With the additional wandering around in South St Paul, it was about 40 miles from my house to the Park.  As we got closer to the park, the terrain got hillier and the ups were harder on us tired old men.  But we made it to the park around 5pm.  And the road inside the park is pretty hilly too ...

The camp site was nice, and the views were great.  We had a nice campfire, and ate freeze-dried food.  After hogging down all the fried goodness at Sea Salt, my gut was pretty bad.  But, Marcus the Prepared had a Pepcid in his kit and it worked wonders!  I gotta remember the Pepcid in the first aid kit!  I forgot the s'mores fixins again, so we had to rely on Marcus' stash of scotch for the evening's entertainment.  I had packed pretty light and was only using a tarp for shelter.  And I was packing so light that I didn't have a pillow (that's the cool way of saying that I forgot it ...).  I set the Tarp up with the bike as a support for one end.  It worked OK, but I had the tarp too close to the ground and the condensation was like rain inside the tarp.  Ugh.  Coupled with the not-so-flat ground and no pillow, the night was actually awful.  I think Marcus was pretty snug/smug in his hammock.

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

The morning was cool and pleasant, and we had breakfast, and broke camp quickly, thinking that we were going to stop for coffee someplace along the way.  We kind of forgot that "along the way" meant Woodbury for a long ways - a desolate suburban wasteland of golf courses, giant high school sports complexes, and row upon row of basically identical tract mansions.  The first coffee we found was downtown St. Paul.  Argh!  Well, we had coffee, and made it home by 1pm.  All in all a good trip and a good first effort at S24O/touring/etc., and I'll definitely do it again.

Gear-wise, I had the bike (of course) a rack and panniers, a Revelate frame bag, and a Maxpedition bag strapped to the aerobars in the front.  I got the weight down pretty well (although I wish I'd had a pillow) and it was pretty evenly balanced, front-to-back.  Marcus had everything in the back in panniers and on the rack, so he was a little rear-heavy.

 

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

 

From BikeCamping_Afton2011

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