I'm NOT doing the Oregon Randonneurs Edens' Gate 400 tomorrow. Here's the thing: I live just a couple of miles from the southernmost edge of the course - where it turns North onto Coburg Road. Last time I did this ride (in the spring), I drove 85 miles to the start, got in a great ride that started and ended in the urban jungle, and drove home again. I really wanted to ride the couple of miles off-course just to let Cog (my intrepid dog) have an early dinner - but we'd had headwinds and I was running late, and there were people to catch, and.... When I saw the ride come 'round again I really wanted to do it, but thought to myself: "There MUST be a better way!".
And I was right. I'm taking a page from my STP playbook and doing the "U-Turn 400", instead. For those of you who don't know, I "crewed" STP for David Bradley, who was riding to raise funds for sarcoma awareness (and here's a link to his writeup of the event). For that event, the strategy was for me to sag the vehicle forward, ride backwards on the course until I met David, and "escort" him to the van. Since I was totally committed to being the Most Worthless Sag Driver Ever (as in, David was only going to need me if he couldn't do it, so I was damned glad to be not needed), I'd ride ahead with him, making a second "U-turn" after ten miles or so and then heading back to get the van.
So - that's what I'm going to do tomorrow. I'm going to start, from home, at the appointed (ungodly, probably 5AM but I haven't actually dared to look, yet) hour, heading north to Marcola, Sweet Home, and probably somewhere around Larwood, where I should encounter oncoming (southbound) randos.
I'll turn around and ride with them (hey, if I stick with the first group I may score a meatloaf sandwich at the Mohawk store this time 'round!), and probably do my second U-turn in Albany, or maybe go a little further if I'm feeling really energetic.
That plan should give me somewhere close to 400, save me a lot of time, and make Cog a little happier.