PREDICTION FOR THIS MORNING WAS RAIN.  I went to bed happy.  Weather doesn't usually bother me.  The only question I had was... 

... was changing to an oval 32 from a round 34 wise?

I have experienced many bad days on Columbine, today's climb.  It tops out at 12,500', and the top is very steep and somewhat rocky.  I've never cleaned it...

... I've always had to dismount.

We started with a burst, racing a half mile up the jeep road with the aim of getting to the rocky single track early.

It hurt.

Within 10 minutes we were on the climb.  Groups of 3-6 riders were working up the straight, barren road.  

A left turn, and into the trees. 

Aspens and pines.

No more groups.

Single riders.

Slowly passing and being passed.

Being from sea level, I still can't get my h.r. up over 160 without going into oxygen debt.  When I do get near 160, I'm panting like a dog.

The good news is the overnight rain left the climb packed and fast...

... and the weather was perfect.

Standing up on a climb like this and having traction to put down power is a unique opportunity.  

It felt good.

And that new oval ring felt terrific, no adjustment period at all.

Rounding the final turn in the trees, the road gets very rocky.  One lineish.  I could see solo riders up the final exposed 2 miles.  

Just ahead a rider dismounts.  

I know that feeling, so I think.  But, actually, this poor cat busted his chain.  I grind on.

It's slow going.

I think back to the Crusher In The Tushar earlier in the month.  Like then, I swear there is now way I'm getting off this bike.  

No cramps today.

About a half mile from the top is a straight section.  It's very difficult.  I've been slowly catching the cat in front.  He's been walking and riding as the terrain steepens.  If I can just get up this last section...

... yes, cleaned it all.

Now for the fun stuff, ripping all the way back to the start.

The traction was so good.

Coming back up the last single track I felt really good.  The recovery strategies are working.

Nothing changed in the standings.  13th overall on the day, 12th with both stages, 3rd in my age group.  

It's raining again, tomorrow will be great.


If it does rain during stage 3...

... no big deal.

Because the KOM jacket was made for climbing mountains.

It's extremely light.

A breathable membrane that repels water and wind.

Use promo code: 




8 hrs 
Stretch & HyperVolt

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