After MG and I talked ourselves into a brand new 600K permanent this summer, we didn’t plan on helping break the champagne on another new permanent. But this weekend we found ourselves ignoring the forecast for occasional rain to join Maile Neel, Paul Donaldson, Crista Borras and Chuck Wood on the first running of Crista’s new The Devil’s Daughter 206K RUSA permanent.
Crista warned us about the estimated 10,000 feet of ascent on this little ride, which featured four major climbs. The big tough mother of the day was up CR12 to Lost River State Park in Lost River, W.V. Steep switchbacks forced us to stand on the pedals in our 26×34 granny gear, rotating the cranks one turn at a time like a cog railway car.
We slipped from rain to clouds to sun and back again all day as soft showers rolled through the region. Somehow it was always dry when we stopped to eat and then rained after we started riding again! The route took us through mostly deserted back roads and gave us majestic views of the West Virginia side of the Shenandoah Valley. When the sun came out we enjoyed the first colors of autumn.
We thought we were home free on the last section when a huge rainbow appeared ahead, a sure sign of more rain. We finished in drizzle, 12 hours after we started, elated to have conquered this mighty ride.
My GPS tracking gave us more than 14,000 feet of climbing, though my Garmin Vista HCx tends to run high. Chuck’s came out closer to 12,000. Either way, we got our $3 worth out of this permanent. For the adventurous, this ride is highly recommended. Thanks Crista!