It's the longest day of the year, so with all of those hours of daylight maybe we should start the ride hours before the sun comes up?  Thanks, Mettle.

An alarm set for 2:15a isn't ideal for a guy like me, but I ducked out of this ride last year blaming work (knowing it was laziness that kept me from going), but with the weather we've had recently there was no way I was missing it again.

Mettle Cycling organized this shindig, led it out, shot the photos, and provided the swag. We should all throw them a bone for putting this together.

A group of more than 20 convened on the NE side of Portland and wheels were rolling at 3:30a, right on time.  The bike viewing was rad: Ira Ryan, Tony Pereira, Moots, Stoemper, Spooky, Land Shark.  

Of course, flat #1 landed around mile 2, but what can you do?

Get another flat.

Fortunately everyone was well prepared, but that put us behind schedule.  Sunrise was at 5:22a, we gave ourselves just under 2 hours to cover the 25 miles, a number of those getting out of the city and about 1400' of climbing.

The pace picked up once out of the city with a core group of dudes pulling everyone along at a nice clip.  I sat back knowing we had a climb to the end, not because I wanted to contest that climb of course, rather because I wanted to ensure I didn't pop and made it in time to see the sunrise.  The front of the group dropped the hammer at the base and I watched them ride away as I paced myself up watching the clock.....

Since we only write stories with happy endings I'll save the drama and say I made it in plenty of time to witness an unreal sunrise.  5:22a doesn't seem so early when you're watching the sunrise over The Gorge was worth it all.  The company, bikes, and weather were all gravy.

So here's were all of that goes: with this ride organized by Mettle, and all of the above shots taken by them, it only make sense that we do what we can to help you capture your rides like we did.  We've teamed up with Mettle to give away a Camera Strap, some Embrocation Socks, and an Embrocation hat.  Want to win?  Sign up below, we'll pick and notify the winner on 6/26.