Location =  To Sandia Crest and Back  
Distance =  70.05
Time =  6:47:53
Ave. Speed =  10.3
Max. Speed =  40.0
Monthly Dist. =    137.58
Yearly Dist. =  860.19

Today was my birthday and I wanted to take my bruised and battered body for a ride up to Sandia Crest, but at first my body didn't want to cooperate. Usually I try to leave the house by 7:00 a.m., but this morning my aches and pains were telling me that I should stay in bed. My body and I had a long discussion about how we needed to get back up on the horse after the crash and that September was halfway over and we needed to keep the streak alive for another month. The weather was looking beautiful and there's no telling what it's going to be like over the next two weeks. Storms are predicted to be moving in. After much debate I finally left the house at around 8:30. Better late than never.

I began heading down Tramway and I noticed right away that my shoulder was hurting a lot. I was starting to think that bailing out on this ride might be the smartest course of action. I rode a couple more miles to see if it would feel better. After a while I got thirsty for my first drink of water but when I looked for the tube of my camelback I couldn't find it. That's when I realized that it was stuck under the strap of my backpack and digging into my shoulder. Extracting it from its position allowed for great relief to my aching shoulder. Now I could concentrate on the task at hand which was to keep those pedals turning. I found the pedaling to be therapeutic and it did not cause me to suffer. In fact, my body only seemed to hurt when I stopped so I resolved to just keep on going.

I took a break at the bottom of the big climb and scarfed down a PowerBar. As I began the ascent I knew that I would need another break before reaching the top, so I debated with myself whether I should take it at the Capulin Snow Play area which would leave about five miles to go, or at the 10K trailhead which would leave 2.5 miles to go. I ended up stopping at Capulin because I was worried that at 10,000 feet it might be cold.

I pulled into the gift shop at the top just as some clouds were trying to form themselves into something that could produce rain. I didn't want to find out if they would be successful at doing that so in a couple of minutes I began the long descent. I was very careful to keep my speed under control because I was in no mood to have a repeat of my last ride. I made it safely down to the gas station where I filled up on water. One nice thing about making these rides to the crest during the week is that there is a lot less traffic than on the weekends.

The ride back to the house was uneventful, just how I needed it to be. The day was beautiful with lots of sun in the morning and then partly cloudy skies after that. The temperature at the top of the mountain was 50 degrees, and it was in the mid 80s back in town. It was almost cold enough at the top to make me put a jacket on, but not quite. I know that I am going to need it next month.

One oddity about this ride was that it was my fastest time of the year. I guess the crash didn't hurt my legs any. Also, being in Moab for a couple of days probably helped.

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