Tag Archives: The Deerfield Dirt-Road Randonnee

The Deerfield Dirt-Road Randonnee aka D2R2 2016

23 Aug

We left the house Wednesday night after work and drove up to South Deerfield Massachusetts to stay in an eclectic hair studio/house AirBnb with the Arrow crew. We left the house a bit after 6:30pm and got in before 11pm, ate some food, crushed a couple beers, and got some rest.

Thursdays Strava route: 66mi | 4,400ft | 4h30m
https://www.strava.com/activities/684831305

Thursday morning we grabbed some breakfast at a diner then went to ride. Dan L. had some awesome routes ready and this one didn’t disappoint. 65 miles of totally off the beaten track gravel/dirt roads up into Vermont. At some point we hit the ‘town’ were we had planned to fill up bottles and realized there was nothing there other than a historic sign and a closed post office. We kept trucking but eventually got to the point of rationing that last bit of water until we found a house at the top of a wicked dirt climb with the coldest pump water Ive ever had PLUS a sweet orange cat. We then cruised through Greenfield and hit the Co-op were I finally was able to live out one of my goals of eating an entire pint of coconut ice cream during a ride. It was amazing. We rode home, cleaned up, and went back to Greenfield to crush food at The Peoples Pint. The food and beers were delish.

Friday’s Strava route: 48mi | 2,800ft | 3h10m
https://www.strava.com/activities/684831247

Friday morning we woke up a bit earlier and went out for another splorin’ trip. This route had more dirt goodness and a bit more rocky jeep-track through the state parks. Not much to say other than awesome roads, awesome scenery, and cool NOT SUPER HUMID weather. Our lunch stop was at the Leverett Village Co-Op that Dan had hit before and it was amazing. It seems to be kinda in the middle of know where right off the awesome sounding Rattlesnake Gutter Road. I bought way too much food including a loaf of bread and crushed as much as I could and stuck the rest into our various bike bags. We then settled into a good rhythm and cruised the 10miles back home. We hung out outside and drank for the remainder of the day. We cruised to the D2R2 camp ground/start to hang out/drink/grab our numbers before getting to bed before it was too too late.

Saturday D2R2 180k Strava Route: 110mi | 12,800ft | 8h45m
https://www.strava.com/activities/684831286

We woke up around 4:45am Saturday morning, got ourselves semi-awake and rode 3ish miles to the start of the ride. We were doing the 180k which went off between 6:00-6:30am. We grabbed some breakfast, used the port-o-potties and cruised out at 6:20am. This was my first pay-event ever… I realized ive never done a supported ride so I didn’t really know what to expect. Im pretty accustomed to riding and planning gas station stops so having water/food stops along the was, well really nice. It made the planning super easy because other than having the route you didn’t have to do anything other than pedal.

There was 6 in our group (Lauren opted for the 100k) and the plan was to ride together all day, take in some nice scenery, and do a good amount of talking/singing/bs-ing up as many hills as possible. In true fashion it was probably 3miles in and we were already crushing up some of the hills faster than my legs wanted that early into the ride. Oooof! The day started off cool with a good amount of shade under the tree canopy. Our spirits were high and the ever popular song from The Merrymen dubbed ‘Feeling Hot Hot Hot’ was blaring at a critical volume from most of our mouths. I also realized at this time that I didn’t know any of the lyrics other than ole ole, ole ole & feeling hot hot hot… it was alright. It was all we needed.

After a short amount of miles we hit the first rocky gravel accent. This is when I realized that unlike most of my other riding this one would be different. There were a good amount of people around us, people on all sorts of bikes with various different skill-sets. On our way up not only did one have to choose a good line through the super steep rocks/loose-stuff but also dodge/swerve/avoid riders who would randomly tip over in front of you. I also quickly realized that people who did stop whether it was from a mechanical or to catch their breath wouldn’t always be super considerate and move from ‘the line’. At many of these moments I was very happy to have my 34×32 granny gear. My knees have been loving me ever since.

The days profile was almost 100% saw-tooth with very few sections of flat. There was also no super long (over 25minute) climbs which makes the amount of climbing for the day even more impressive. Everything was punchy, some more so than others with only once section being 30% gravel for 50ft or so. The rest stops were very well placed and I never felt like I needed to conserve water to make it to the next stop. I will say having lunch right at the base of a semi-long climb was kinda ehhhh BUT im sure it was because that’s where all the different routes were suppose to converge & meet (but didn’t due to a bridge being out this year.)

The rest of the ride just seemed to float along. We all kept each other entertain/potentially annoyed up and over each steep kicker. Everything was a bit of a blur from then on. We then hit the 2nd to last water station on out way to Patten Hill which is road that turns into gravel and is ~2miles long with an avg of 9% grade. Brutal in its own right but way more intense when you are 95miles in and have slews of people trying to figure out a way to get up it in front of you. This was a notable climb and now I understand why people remember it. The good news is there was a stand at the top wish water/food/watermelon!

After the rest stop you enjoy a descent that starts a bit rocky on some jeep track and then descend farther into some more flowy dirt. You end up at the bottom with 100 miles in your legs at 10miles to go. Note to future self: The next 10 miles arent flat. Dont think the climbing is over and you will have a good time. After a few more kickers here and there we finally made it down by the river and rolled into the finish, all 6 of us together and in one piece.

We only had a few mechanical for the day. i think 3 flats, one due to a cut sidewall. and unfortunately Shaina broke 1 spoke on her front wheel and 2on her rear… luckily the super out of true rims were disc.

We grabbed a beer, some food, and a seltzer and bs’d for a while. After we filled our gullets we rode back to the airbnb and crushed a few too many IPAs, and I had a birthday shot cup of Fireball.

Another awesome weekend of buds, beers & bikes!

Bike setup:
Lynksey Cooper CX – Hydro Disc
50/34 x 11/32t gearing
37c Continental Travel Contact Tires
Rock Geist Half Frame Bag

New i9 / velocity wheels built right before this trip:

Western Mass Day1

Thursday —————————————————————————–

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Friday —————————————————————————–

Western Mass day2

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Saturday / D2R2 —————————————————————————–

Western Mass day3 / D2R2

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Sundays drive = bfast + ice cream downashore —————————————————————-

Western Mass day3 / D2R2

Western Mass day3 / D2R2

Cookmans Creamery…

Western Mass day3 / D2R2