If there was ever a contrast between back-to-back rides, the differences between the 50 States Ride and the Back Roads Century were large. The 50 States Ride took place in a city, with lots of stop signs and traffic lights and cars. The Back Roads Century is in the Virginia countryside, with long stretches of uninterrupted riding and few automobiles. On the day of the 50 States Ride, temperatures were in the low 80s F. It started in the upper 40s and stayed in the mid 60s throughout the Back Roads ride, and it was windy. The 50 States ride had a 7-page cue sheet. The Back Roads metric route (100 km, or 65 miles) was only one side of one page.
There were three things these two rides had in common: 1. Good friends to ride with, 2. good weather, and 3. a good amount of hills.