THE 4200' CLIMB WE DID SATURDAY REINFORCED A TRUTH.  The lookout was high, high above.  It was tiny.  White.  Barely distinguishable.  Within 5 minutes, nothing had changed.  After 10 minutes I could see the hotel where we started looming large.  Shortly thereafter, I realized how important it would be to control my mind...

... because things weren't changing.

The hotel still seemed close, and the lookout far away.

I hadn't prepared mentally for this kind of climb at all. 

For 45 minutes we ground out the miles.  Some pitches were 20%, and the average was just under 10%.  We stopped talking.  Andy would ride ahead on the very steepest sections, I'd work my way back to him when the climb backed off.

All the while, the hotel still appeared large and the lookout nothing more than a small white box.

This is what I call clawing the climb.

Staying on top of the pedals, maintaining a sustainable pace, never slowing down. 

Clawing our way up the climb vs cracking and letting the mountain claw our souls.

Suddenly, the perspective changed.  

The hotel now seemed minuscule and the lookout a giant white beacon towering above the pine trees.  The grave grasp of the hotel was released and the magnetic pull of the lookout unleashed.

15 minutes later we stopped at the summit.  The view was clear and beautiful and worth every clawing pedal stroke.

I love that feeling of clawing and clawing until where I started is far, far away and the destination seems inevitable...

... which is why I often wear this shirt.

To inspire people to get outside, put their phones away, connect with the physical world.

If you're of the same mindset, use promo code: CLAW

... and save 20%


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