Do What You Can With What You Have

Once again, I learned not to believe the cue sheets or the elevation profiles. Today’s described the route as “a relatively easy section.” The elevation profile showed “soft” hills that looked like they had easy pitches. Instead, there were numerous 7, 8, 9, and 10% hills and some were very long. I used the lowest gear I had on my bike and when the pitch still increased, I just kept going. I did what I could with what I had. On a delightful downhill, I saw a sign that said “Do What You Can With What You Have.” Hmmmm.

At least, doing today’s hills reminded me that I will be able to do tomorrow’s ride over five mountains. Here is a video of one descent and ascent on today’s ride.

The other reason I knew I would be able to do tomorrow’s hills is that I already did them back on April 17. The segment that goes from Cumberland to Hancock MD over Martin Mountain, Polish Mountain, Green Ridge, Town Hill, and Sideling Hill is described in the RAAM cue sheets as the hardest segment of the entire route based on elevation gain per mile. This segment wasn’t far from home and I figured that if I could do it, I should be able to do the RAAM route. Once I succeeded in April and Susie enjoyed sagging it, the decision was made to do this cross-country route.

Today’s fall scenery in western Maryland was some of the prettiest I have seen on this entire ride, not that I’m biased or anything as a Maryland native! Here’s a video of a piece of it. 

Susie has friends in Cumberland and they arranged a surprise welcome in City Hall Park at 3 PM. We came in right on time!

Members of the Cumberland government
Susie and me with our Cumberland friends

Ride details

Start location: McHenry MD

End location: Cumberland MD

Distance: 48.3 miles

Cumulative distance: 2839.1 miles

Elevation gain: 4094.5 feet (Cumulative elevation gain is now over 100,000 feet!)

Strava track:


19 thoughts on “Do What You Can With What You Have

  1. Lynn,

    Your videos are excellent – high resolution and stable. What video camera are you using and perhaps you could post a photo of how it is mounted on your bike.

    Take care,


    1. Thank you, Bob! I use a Sony Action Cam. The case is screwed onto a pair of metal bars that are attached to my aerobars. I’ll try to post a photo at some point.
      I am having a small problem with it that you may have noticed. The microphone picks up vibrations and the ride sounds noisier than I experience it.


  2. Wow. You are so close to home. Hope your hardest day goes easily, and all the rest of the trip is an amazing joy ride. Can’t wait for your return.


  3. Lynn, I love this! Saw the write-up in the Cumberland paper today and found your blog. I live just a couple miles from where you started your descent/ascent video. I’m a 64yo female endurance cyclist. I’ve ridden that road (Rte.40) many times and know every tree and crack in the asphalt that your camera picked up. Kudos to you for undertaking this- – you’re close enough to taste it now!


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