With threatening monsoon we took the chance and braved the elements and our gamble paid off. The sun peaked through a number of times and we only got really wet the last 4 miles along the east side of Lake Sammamish. The roads and trails were all really wet, I haven't been that dirty after a road ride yet. The rear break pads were rubbing on the rim because they were so loaded with road grime and mud. My friend Tiffany had mud all over her face from drafting my rear tire.
I tried out the rear fender for the first time today, it was great to not feel like I wet my pants after the ride. It was also really easy to put on, took all off two minutes. I will have to adjust it a bit for next time, there was some rubbing on the tire, but nothing major. My favorite part of the ride was pedaling past Duthie Hill. It's amazing the affect dirt jumping has on me, I saw the big 6+ inch bikes and I got all tingly, my heart races and I get pumped with adrenaline just thinking about it. Dirt and air will always be my true love, but the spinning is great too. Anything on two wheels, like I have always said, makes me happy.
I felt great after the ride and still do. I made sure to drink every 20-30 minutes and eat every 45-60 minutes. This was plenty to keep me going. My legs feel fine and were starting to get heavy up hills near the end, but no issue on the flats. My back still gets stuck afterwards. I did a lot of stretching so it's not as bad as usual. I am also still getting the pinching in my lower neck, between my shoulder blades. I thought the shorter stem would help with that, but it hasn't. I will try seat placement next, see if that helps. If not, I may have to seek a professional opinion. $$
Fun ride overall, I would suggest it to anyone. The only down side was in a few spots there was no bike lane and very minimal shoulder, but still doable. Thanks Tiff for a great ride and for keeping us from getting lost.