This ride had a number of dumb elements to it.
First of all, you may remember that Tom H has set a task of hitting all of the high points in every NJ county this summer. Today he scheduled the ride to hit the high points of Atlantic, Camden, and Gloucester counties, and cumulatively, they don't add up to 600'. The elevation for the entire ride was less than 1000'. Not easy to do with over 55 miles of distance!
We met at the Muschal school in Bordentown, and then had to drive over an hour to the real start in Hammonton:
From there, we rode a few miles to the high point of Atlantic County. Impressive!
Then back down the same road, to hit the high point of Gloucester:
Possibly because the terrain is so flat, many of the roads are straight. There were some curves on this ride, but we needed to be warned about 'em. On to Gloucester's high point, in the front yard of a church:
Then. although we were less than halfway along (by a lot), we stopped at a Wawa, because Tom could find it and we didn't know what we'd find further along. Laura tried to give away her muffin bottom, but got no takers, until she said, "It's really not a ride until someone takes my bottom." Ahem.
Then, along the demanding climb to the high point of Camden, Tom's saddlebag fell off. The ensuing report sounded when it jammed Dave's wheel; he slid a bit, and his tire was so worn that the tire wore right through, and the road tore up the tube.
Some gash, eh? Did you also notice that the entire circumference of the tire is worn to the fabric? Dave swears the tire looked good when he inspected it this morning. The wear must have been due to those grueling hills.
Laura and Dave tried to patch it up with a boot and duct tape...
... but it was never going to work. Dave started to hobble down the hill, while the rest of us visited the high point of Camden, in a housing development.
After that, we rolled back down the hill the way we came (there was a lot of that today) where we saw Dave. He agreed to wait until we could get back to the cars (about eighteen miles away) and go back and pick him up. We had headwinds on the way back, but that last eighteen miles was the highest pace of the ride. I came back with Laura, while Jack, Joe, and Tom went to pick up Dave.