Sunday, October 2, 2016
Re-uniting With The Alps Of Florida
For the first time since I returned to Florida, I had a reunion with my ol' Clermoint pal -- a 41-mile ride carved out of the popular Horrible Hundred ride.
It was 1,900 feet of climbing -- WITH a snapped rear derailleur cable that put me in the shittiest gear to climb. Good thing my Vegas/Nevada mountain climbing past came in handy to muscle up the hills of Buckhill and Sugarloaf Mountain.
Debbie, again, accompanied me for the roller-coaster journey outside Clermont in Lake County, which began with a nice serene jaunt along Lake Minneola.
But after three miles, we began ascending off the pretty lake and began the rolling hills outside Clermont.
I have crafted a wonderful route, that changes every few miles from country roads cutting through old citrus groves, to hilly rollers meandering on the edge of new developments to Florida's classic hill climbs such as Sugarloaf.
At the top of Sugarloaf Mountain Road lives a kind and thoughtful former Air Force man named Harry who I interviewed for past Alps of Florida travel stories who rolls out two orange water coolers to thirsty cyclists.
And there he was today, in action. I have talked to Harry on the phone for interviews but never met the gentleman in person.
This area is also known for its triathlete and bike races -- and one was happening today.
One of the steeper roads -- at least it was relatively a short distance -- was Blue Jay Road that leads riders back into the Clermont area.