Saturday, June 1, 2013

Midnight Moonlight Madness

Last night (Friday), I found myself at 8:00 having no plans for the evening.  But I wanted some!  It was a beautiful, clear night, so I decided to hop on my bike, fire up the new randonneuring-friendly lighting system, and set out for remote pastures.

What a blast!  I think all avid cyclists owe it to themselves to try a nighttime ride at some point.  I wound up covering 85 miles or so, from my front door out to Sugarloaf and back, while enjoying (in a safe way) a new audiobook.

I headed out around 8:30, and got home just before 2:00 a.m.  It couldn't have been much more pleasant: no cars on the roads, no bikes on the roads.  Heck, no one on the roads but me and nocturnal wildlife.  I probably saw two dozen deer, several raccoons, and a few cats, all with eyes illuminated by my (quite wonderful) Exposure Joystick helmet light.

There's something liberating about freeing oneself from the dictates of prescribed training rides, group-ride pacing, wattages, heart rate zones, and all of that -- just head out and go.  When the only sounds are the soft whirring of one's tires, it's easy to remember why cycling is such a joy.  Even familiar routes look quite different at night, and the stars come out to play far from the city lights.

I definitely need to do this again soon.  If you love driving at night on the open road, this is way better.


  1. I was tempted to make fun of you for this, but that actually does sound awesome. Although I'm not sure about the whole cycling while audio-booking. I will be trying this soon, though. After the kids are in bed. And after I figure out if my headlamp will recharge after years of nonuse. Sounds totally phenomenal.

  2. Yeah, it's pretty cool. Just go overkill on the lighting front. Cycling at night can be stressful or joyous, and the distinction is largely driven by whether you can see where you're going in a meaningful way and have enough in reserve to be sure you'll get home. Let me know if you want specific recommendations!

  3. So can we sign you up for a 24+ hr race soon??? LOVE riding at night :-)

  4. There are definitely some 24-hour races in my future. Imma gun win.

  5. Dear Damon,

    My name is Kenrick Smith and I am a triathlete trying to work my way up the ranks of the triathlon world. I am chronicling my story race by race, event by event on my website. I have been racing now for three years and have had some pretty remarkable experiences along the way. I have been sharing these experiences with anyone who is interested in hearing about them. I have decided that I want to help fellow triathletes/runners get their own personal race stories out there for others to utilize for inspiration, motivation, to see what a certain race might entail, see what certain racers use for equipment or nutrition while racing, etc. I am putting together a platform/website that will help fellow triathletes branch out even more in the industry while helping others along the way. I am reaching out to triathletes from around the country to see if they'd be interested in joining the platform by providing race reports of their own experiences. I am looking to gather from various experience levels and disciplines. I am leaving it up to the racer to be as detailed as they want to make it and how in depth they want to get into the race during their report. Each racer is more than welcome to plug any companies or personal blogs/website that helped them along the way. My hope is that through platform you will benefit through increased exposure and traffic to your website/blog and products you associate with. I feel your writing style and your athletic experience in the sport of triathlon would be a major asset to this website and athletes all over the country. I am looking at launching this towards the end of summer, and will constantly be updating it with new race reports. I want to thank you in advance and hope you consider becoming a contributor.

    Best Regards,
    Kenrick Smith