Wednesday, November 14, 2012

2012 Coffeeneuring Challenge

As soon as I read about the 2nd Annual Coffeeneuring Challenge I knew I had to give this a try.  7 different coffee shop rides in 6 weeks? Thata's my kinda challenge! I wanted to avoid going to Starbucks, and since my usual days off are Sundays and Tuesdays I needed to find local coffee shops that weren't closed on Sundays.  I enjoyed finding a couple of new coffee spots, as well as hitting some of my usual places.

Day#1: Aversboro Coffee
Sunday, October 7th I started the Coffeneuring challenge with a visit to my favorite local shop here in Garner, NC- Aversboro Coffee, at 1401 Aversboro Rd. I'd invited others to join me for a 40-50 mile ride, but the weather was looking iffy.  I got a café mocha and waited a little while for anyone to show.  Soon it was apparent that 1) we were about to have a big thunderstorm and 2) no one was coming.  I quickly rode home and waited out the storm.  A couple of hours later it was all clear so I went for a solo 45 mile ride on the LeMond, finishing once again at Aversboro Coffee for a small coffee and a brownie, just to make sure it counted!

Day#2: It's A Grind
My second coffeneuring outing was Sunday, October 14th.  I met Geof for a casual ride in Cary on the condition that somewhere along the way we'd stop for coffee. I'd been building an early eighties Italian Ciocc, and I wanted to take it for a spin.  He led me on a 45 mile ride and we stopped at an It's A Grind at 2000 Boulderstone Way in Cary, NC. I got a small iced coffee, and a brownie from some high schoolers outside having a bake sale for charity. 

Day#3: The Coffee Mill
I skipped the next Sunday to ride the NCBC Fall Rally so I went for a coffeeneuring ride on my other day off, Tuesday October 23rd.  Luckily the rules allow for those of us whose jobs don't have the typical Saturday & Sunday weekend.  For this trip I rode solo down to Clayton, NC to check out a shop there called The Coffee Mill at 105 S. Lombard St.  The shop is attached to The Flipside restaurant, so along with my café mocha I ordered some lunch- a very good burger and fries. I'll probably do this run again, since it gets me a nice 25 mile workout and a good lunch too!

Day#4: Godino's Bakery
I'd been riding the Ciocc quite a bit and really enjoying the bike, but it still needed a couple of key parts: I needed to replace the Kalloy seatpost with a Campagnolo one, and the rear wheel skewer was a Shimano- I needed to get a matching pair of period correct Campy skewers.  Cycles deOro in Greensboro was having it's annual Tweed Ride and swap meet on Sunday, October 28th so I decided to drive over, look for some vintage parts, and show off the bike a bit. I met up with some friends earlier in the morning before the Tweed Ride for a tour of my old haunts in Greensboro and a visit to Godino's Bakery at 1007 Hwy 150W for a cup of coffee and a muffin.  It was a nice 16 mile ride, some roads, some greenways, casual pace and lots of fun.

Day#5: Benelux Café
I traded days off with a coworker so he could close on a house, so this week I had Thursday November 1st off.  I did a quick solo ride to downtown Raleigh and back for a stop at another favorite coffee shop- Benelux Café at 309 Blake St. in Historic City Market.  I had a medium coffee and got in almost 15 miles on the carbon bike.

Day#6: Cup A Joe
Sunday November 4th was a busy day for me, but I wanted to squeeze in a photo shoot of the Ciocc and a coffeeneuring ride.  I started at City Market, and took pics of the bike on the cobbled streets, then I rode through downtown to Cup A Joe at 3100 Hillsborough St. near the NCSU campus. I ran into Jon Turner there, he'd just finished pacing the City of Oaks Marathon.  I just had a regular cuppa joe, and we talked about bikes and endurance events before I rode back to City Market to head home.  It was a short ride- less than 6 miles!  For good measure I had an espresso at Benelux before driving home.

Day #7: The Morning Times
My final coffeeneuring run was on Tuesday, November 6th- my usual day off.  It was cool and overcast, threatening rain. I spent most of the day working on projects at home, then squeezed in a ride late in the afternoon. I rode the NYCBikes commuter to downtown Raleigh to visit The Morning Times, 10 E Hargett St. and have an excellent latte. Just a 15 mile ride, with the last half in the dark.

That does it for the Coffeeneuring Challenge- it was harder than I thought it would be, but I found some new shops to frequent and ingested large quantities of caffeine. I got to ride with some great friends and also had a few solo outings. Most of all I enjoyed not having a schedule to keep- the rides started whenever they started and I never rushed anywhere or tried to reach some goal of speed or distance.  The caffeine dictated the pace...


  1. I think I now understand your Nov-10 OEO ride: too much coffee the previous month, combined with not enough on the 10th.


  2. Well done! You're right... I've also found that it's not as easy as it initially looks.
    May I consider this your official submission? Hope you like the premium; they were designed by a Seattle randonneur.

    1. Yes, please consider this my submission- I sent a link in an email, did it get through? Thanks, this was really fun!

    2. No, link did not go through, but this works. I have you down... first North Carolina coffeeneur in the challenge's two years!