“I had the day off from work and the weatherman was predicting record high temps, so I decided to knock out a dirty metric century on the 2015 Salsa Fargo that I had just purchased. I installed the new Shimano XT M8020 pedals, a Brooks Cambium Carved C17, three Salsa water bottle cages, my bags and Garmin.
I waited until 0900 before leaving so the temps could warm up a little. The weather forecast predicted winds from the SW, so I headed that direction so they would push me home. I cut through town on the bike trail and then hit the gravel road heading south. I noticed fresh bicycle tracks that appeared to be the same Clement MSO tread pattern that I was riding. I followed the tracks over the gentle rollers until I turned west a few miles north of Traer, Iowa; I found out later that I was a few hours behind Guitar Ted. The headwind had been a steady 10+ mph all morning. It was almost noon when I arrived in Traer, and I stopped to drink a bottle of Tailwind Endurance Fuel and the rest of the water in my other bottle. I stopped at a convenience store and purchased a liter of water and a package of almonds. I topped off both water bottles and added my other package of Endurance Fuel to one of them. I then headed west for a few miles before turning north for the ride home.
I missed my turn and ended up on a section of sealcoat before checking my phone a realizing that I was a mile further west than I wanted to be
Once I was back on the gravel, the tailwind was picking up and pushing me home as planned. The traffic had been nonexistent all morning, but as I neared home, I started seeing a few vehicles. I crossed one of the blacktop roads frequented by road cyclist and saw a few groups out riding, and I also saw a guy on his fat bike riding on the gravel road. I hit the metro area before 1400 and was planning on going home via the bike trail through the state park, but the snow was too deep and slushy, so I had to take city streets the rest of the way. I arrived home by 1500 with about 69 miles on the Garmin. Not bad for my first ride of the year.