Saturday, February 18, 2012

8,653 feet and then it got dark

It's really not all that lonely at the top. In fact, it's rather swell.
I ride with fear. Not terror, but an uneasy worry that I'll run out of energy and just fall over by the side of the road, unable to continue because I've burned all my matches hammering a hill or trying to hang with faster riders.

So when I took advantage of a rare Friday off by spending the day solo on my bike, I went out slow, and stayed slow. Really slow. I'd hoped to do 100 miles with a little climbing. Unfortunately, even though I started at 8:18 A.M., I ran out of daylight shortly before my goal. I did, however, manage 8,653 feet of climbing and 91 miles.

Riding out of Antioch to get anywhere interesting to ride is a pain that involves too many bike paths and a short jaunt down the freeway on Highway 4 next to the Concord Navel Weapon Station. But after that my ride was a lot more fun. Going up Pig Farm I was passed by a young woman with amazing boots. So amazing that when she stopped at the top I stopped too just to photograph them, or Tricia would never have believed my description. I went on to the Three Bears, rolled through Lafayette and out to Danville to catch South Gate Road and then up to the Diablo Junction. From there I had just enough time to get down North Gate Road to the Pleasant Hill BART station as it got dark. My sweet bride picked my tired ol' self up in Bay Point and drove me home.

What's crazy is that my heart rate was low all day, and even though my legs were tired by the time I got to the Diablo Summit, I still felt pretty good. This, for no good reason, got me thinking about the cutoff times for the Devil Mountain Double (eight hours for the first 100 miles, with similar climbing...) and wondering if... no, never mind. It was just a fleeting question.

1 comment:

  1. Just admit it...The DMD is beckoning you...This annual solo century is really cool btw


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