The Spring Classics are in full swing and my favorite one-day race, Paris-Roubaix, is now just five days away. There are few places where you can still ride on cobblestones—even in northern France, some of the roads used for Paris-Roubaix are closed at all other times of year. While on vacation two weeks ago, I had the unexpected experience of descending a steep hill on cobbled 35th Street NW in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington DC:
The photo above, taken in June 2011, is from Google’s “Street View” mapping feature. Conditions were not as nice when I visited. Two weeks ago that smooth gutter was partially blocked by debris. I had to venture onto the cobbles, and I am a good rider on bad roads, but I would have preferred to ride the gutter all the way down.