The first day of RSVP is a cruel, hard mistress. She likes to remind me that it has been a month since STP and taking a few rides off as reward for a job well done is not a good idea. Like STP, RSVP has some long, grinding, flats but she is also graced with some lumpy terrain. RSVP is more of a challenge, but the scenery is much more rewarding in my opinion. The start was warm and gray and the construction on the Burke Gilman trail meant that we started climbing almost immediately. We were met with a cool mist on the Centennial Trail. It dampened the spirits, but not our resolve to march on to the finish. The result of this solemn day of riding is that I heard few CYCLEBUTTCRACK comments from my fellow riders, but every now and then someone would smile as they passed or would chuckle as I passed them. It was then that I remembered that I am the face and all four cheeks of CYCLEBUTTCRACK. That is an important responsibility. We rode on a gray day, but we were blessed with a rare tailwind on the Skagit Flats and the blue skies finally shown through as I rolled into Bellingham. The cherry on top was a brutal climb to Western Washington University at mile 105. A beautiful and exhausting day!