So I started doing the MEC rides around Ottawa last fall after a nice nudge from my buddy Dion. They’re fun, no fuss and best of all, very affordable. And in this case, free!
This one was officially cancelled due to weather and low registration I think. The staff still wanted to get out I think so they gave the option to do a shorter ride for the few of us who still wanted to get out. All 8 of us were grateful.
The weather held out for the most part but it was a bit chilly and windy in spots. But no rain so it was an enjoyable morning.
The ride was mostly on country gravel roads. It made for some slick corners with my road set-up but it was nice to get out on roads with little to no traffic.
It was a pretty easy pace for most of the ride as they had looked at keeping a pack speed of about 25km/hr. One of the speedsters kept on trying to push the pace but he was good for most of the ride.
I did get a flat about 1/3 of the way out. It wasn’t so bad as one of the MEC guys fixed it in less than 5 minutes. And we were off again! It also helped we had a SAG wagon so it wouldn’t haven’t been terrible in bad conditions.
We did the 65k ride in about 2:20 and then got back to the start for some coffee and donuts. Who doesn’t love empty carbs after a nice bout of exercise? Haha… I did thge ride fat fasted so I allowed myself one donut. It wasn’t bad!
I’m really starting to appreciate the MEC approach to events. Keep them simple and low cost so just about anyone can come out and enjoy them. And guess where I’ll be getting my next batch of supplies? You guessed it: MEC.
I’m not a huge fan of group rides in general but I highly recommend these if you simply want to get out with new peeps or want to check out new scenery and roads. I hope to see some of you at the 2017 Century Ride, I promise some fun roads and fun people!