This has been kind of an off-the-bicycle-year for Kathi and me. It's been a busy summer for Kathi and I got a new motorcycle, so, well, I guess that explains that. But we both like Lories Lakeside Century Ride so much that we went again this year in spite of a lack of miles. To read my previous review of Lories' Lakeshore Century, click here.

Kathi and I started out and rode together to the first sag, located on the shores of Lake Michigan. It was a cool morning, but not cool enough to wear tights when we started at 9:30. The sky was crystal clear and Chicago was perfectly visible across the lake. Kathi headed back on the 28 mile route while I pushed on to Michigan City.

     

But first I stopped to grab a flyer for one of those houses near the sag on East Lake Front Drive. I always wondered how much those cost. Well this one has 6-bedrooms, 3.5 bath, three season room, vaulted ceilings, double sided wood burning fireplace, new roof and carpet, blah blah blah. Private beach access point. Turn key. Only one point two nine mill. I'm gonna get right on that!

Since I haven't been riding so much, I planned to ride to Michigan City and head back from there. As I got nearer to Michigan City I decided to go off route and check out the Blue Chip Casino. No, from the outside... I've never been much of a gambler. My mother is probably shaking her head about this because she always had fun going to Foxwoods, Atlantic City or even Vegas. There were plenty of cars in the parking lot even at this early hour, though I suspect that once you're inside you can't tell if it's 12 noon or 12 midnight.

 From there I headed over to the lakefront park and “boardwalk”. The weather was much different that morning than the day before. On Friday the lake looked more like the Atlantic Ocean near Rockport, with lots of wind and large waves breaking at the beach. There were even rip current warnings, though we did spot one surfer coming out near the lighthouse. But on this morning there were more fishermen than surfers. I rode my bike out to the lighthouse, and close to something that I can only assume to be a dredging boat. Before I left the beach one of the fishermen told me that he had caught some salmon. I had no idea there were salmon there.

   

After I left the park I decided that with the southwest wind and my lack of miles that I should head back and forgo New Buffalo. I was able to jump in with Team Mexico from there until we got back to the sag at the lake. They were a nice, friendly group, apparently well known at the sag and start. I was even able to help a bit with the echelon, which was fun.

Back at the sag I only briefly stopped and then continued on my way back. I stopped to help someone whose chain dropped off the front and was rewarded with a stopped train a half mile past that. I back-tracked the outbound route cut a few miles, got briefly lost ( I ride with 3RVS normally... we always get lost ) and found, and got back to the church in fine shape. 

Kathi was just sitting down for the post ride lunch so my timing was pretty good. This year's lunch included a delicious pulled pork BBQ sandwich, some vegan thing if you didn't want that, potato salad, regular salad, and some delicious grilled corn on the cob (in the husk). The guy who was peeling the corn and dipping it in the butter told me he thought he was getting a pretty easy job... until he did a couple hundred of these ;) And, of course, three different flavors of ice cream to choose from. The mint chocolate chip was delicious. Kathi took advantage of the free massage.

It was another great time at Lories, and thanks to Helen and Jim we were able to spend a second night in town and not have to hurry back. After we got cleaned up we went to Porter and had an excellent steak and ribs at Wagoner's. They have a killer beer selection, and Kathi says the mojitos are excellent too! You need to get there early because it does get busy. A movie at Chesterton wrapped up an excellent day.

Thanks again to Helen, Jim and all the organizers for putting on a great ride!