Thursday, May 12, 2016

Time to Get Real

Last posting I had a bunch of possibilities for this coming year.  Didn't make the lottery for Leadville, and thought I would do the AZ Trail 750.  I practiced hiking up Tumamoc hill here with 40 lbs of bricks in a backpack and thought I might have a chance at actually being able to do the carry the bike on your back through the Grand Canyon piece ( yeah really ! ).

Automatic Closing Gate - AZ Trail Ripsey Segment
AZ Trail at Freeman Road looking North

Then I got out and started riding some more pieces of the AZ Trail.  The AZ Trail is pretty hard, there are sections that have a lot of hike-a-bike in it and a few sections that are pretty rideable. I rode Passage 2 ( more walked than rode ) down in the Canelo Hills and got my butt kicked that day with lots of walking and pushing the bike ... something like 5.5 hours to go 15 miles.  I rode Passage 15 from Freeman Road up to Kelvin and that went a lot better. The piece from Reddington Road over to Molino Basin was fun until you get to West Tank and then it's one big hike fest up the side of a mountain and then walking down the other side, because I suck at real mountain biking and was afraid of dying.

Looking off toward Kearney 
Above West Tank close to Molino Basin
West Tank
After all of that, I decided to leave my full suspension BMC at home and take my trusty Pivot hardtail and was signed up on the tracker to do the 300 mile version. Finally signed up on a Saturday before the race start on Friday and on Monday ended up with a light version of the flu that kept me asleep with a fever for about 3 days. Went out into the garage on Thursday, looked at the bike and said "this ain't gonna happen".

I think I have most of my strength "whatever there is" back from that little episode, and so here it is with less than a month to go and I am looking forward to getting back to Antelope Wells the morning of June 10 and heading back north for TD.  Hoping that the knowledge that I got from last year will allow me to do it a little bit quicker, I would love to knock 5 days off.  The main thing is to finish and get to Banff.

Off to Sonoita on Saturday morning for a single night out and in two weeks do a 2 night out trip and declare myself ready for this.


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