Here I was, one mile from the summit of my ride at Monarch Pass, and the wind that has been punishing me for the past 5 miles decides to turn around. Yup, it’s at my back and I know it is Mom and Dad.
Today was a great ride, and for those keeping score at home, I am now winning 2-0! The Rockies have been tough, and I took it to them again today. An 84 mile ride, with over 5,000 feet of climbing and I reached the highest point of the entire ride at 11,312 feet.
We started early because there was a chance of rain, with some winds from 20 to 30 MPH expected in the afternoon. So the first 45 miles went really well. David and I are in a good rhythm, he knows when to expect me in and we got the first 45 miles down before noon. I even was on WIP again before the ride, talking with Angelo Cataldi and the team.
After 45 miles, the road turns up. And I mean there is a steep hill for the next 16.3 miles. It was primarily from 5% to 7% and that is something I trained for six months to handle. But throw in some wind and then add some hail! Really, Rockies, you think a little hail is going to stop me? Well, thankfully it WAS a little hail, for less than five minutes. But what the hail?
No worries, up I went and getting closer to the summit, pedal by pedal. And then, with a mile to go, the wind was at my back and I got to the summit. David and I shared a hug (we are not huggers) and then enjoyed some Oreo fudge.
The rest was all downhill. Well, the next nine miles were anyhow, 5% to 10% grade and I used my brakes the entire time. Another 15ish miles and today’s ride was done. Great day, great ride and in the evening a fine dinner in Gunnison, CO.
Tomorrow, SAGger V9, my brother Patrick, his father-in-law and Pat’s son Tommy Matthews (arguably the coolest name in the world) will be coming in to help me over hte next four days. The ride will be a little shorter tomorrow, and we are expecting some eh weather.
We are currently 2187 miles into the ride and over 60% of the way done. Just think, in 22 days, we will cross The Golden Gate Bridge to complete Ride Hard. Breathe Easy.
Enjoy the pictures of the magnificent Colorado Rockies who are now 0-2 versus this guy.