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Overlooking the Columbia River at Rest Stop #2

This year I had a couple of my riding buddies from Utah come out to join me on this event, Lasse and Craig from Cedar City. This years ride followed Marine Drive along the Columbia River before turning onto the Columbia River Historic Highway. We chose the 80 mile route this year and avoided some of the major climbing but we still had a pretty stiff hill to conquer on Louden Road (at 12% plus). Descending on Larch Mountain Road brought us to our spectacular rest stop and viewpoint shown above, after which we descended back to the Sandy River. A little more route finding brought us to the Springwater Corridor we followed back through town. The weather started a little cool but warmed to the mid-70’s by noon. Winds were pretty light but always seemed in our face whichever way we turned.

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Not every bike has achieved it’s finest expression right out of the box, and so it is with my Bianchi L’Eroica. After several hundred miles of time in the saddle (including Eroica Hispania) I have come up with a few changes that I will make. Not that any of it will improve the performance of the bike, which is already great at this point, but just to add some style points. After all, can a classic bike ever really be too classic?

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This is my seventh participation in the Grand Tour double century and it’s various distances. I have done the 125 mile distance once, the 300 mile distance twice and the 200 mile distance four times now. It is an enjoyable route in-spite of the many traffic lights and heavy traffic in some sections.

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Clear sailing on the wonderful Hwy 1 bike path near Mussel Shoals

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This is the second year that Eroica Hispania has been held. The La Rioja wine region of Spain and the village of Cenicero is home to the event. I signed up for it last year but as it turned out I was unable to attend. This year however was a different story and we were able to make the trip. This post will be mostly a photo essay of the event with some commentary thrown in here and there. I’ll let the pictures do the talking!

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This is me about 2 hours into the event. Photo taken by event photographer Paolo.

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May 21, 2016

This year is my 13th participation in this event which apparently makes it my favorite double century! I first did this ride in the late 1980’s before it was part of the California Triple Crown series. This year was one of my better Davis rides, in spite of the weather.

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The second rest stop at Capell Valley Fire Station (mile 57)

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Another great Oregon Randonneurs event, this time with the added benefit of wonderful weather! OR puts together some of the best routes anywhere and this one was no exception!

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My 2015 Bianchi L’Eroica

I originally discussed this bike in a post last year after I first heard about it, Preview of the Bianchi L’Eroica. I determined that I wanted to get one as soon as they became available and put my local bike shop onto the job of tracking one down. After a few months of phone calls and inquiries my Bianchi arrived in January of 2016. It appears to be the 17th bike in production based on the serial number, and is certainly among the first to arrive in the US.

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