2009/10/03

Location =  To Sandia Crest and Back  
Distance =  70.28
Time =  6:38:27
Ave. Speed =  10.5
Max. Speed =  36.0
Monthly Dist. =    70.28
Yearly Dist. =  940.55

I seem to have lost some of my enthusiam for writing down my rides. It's been a month since I rode to the crest and I'm just now getting around to putting it up on the website. On the other hand, my schoolwork has been going very well and I am making good progress.

I headed out on this Streak Ride at about 7:30 in the morning. The sun wasn't up over the edge of the mountain yet, and it was a little bit overcast and cool. I had my jacket on and my legwarmers. It was the first day of Balloon Fiesta and as I went around the corner from the house I saw this nice view of the mass ascension. Beautiful!

I headed down to Tramway to begin the long trip around the mountain. I took a break at the start of the big climb to eat a PowerBar and get ready for the ascent. I tried to take it easy as I climbed because I was worried that I might not have the energy for it and I didn't want to bonk.

A couple of months ago I took a picture of the side of the mountain that you pass by, before you get to the ski area. At that time I was impressed with how green it was. I stopped to take of picture of the same mountain as it looks now having changed into it's fall colors.

I continued the climb toward the top just listening to my music and turning the pedals round and round. The clouds all disappeared, the wind wasn't blowing, and all was well with the world. I rested at 10,000 feet for a couple of minutes and then rode the last two and a half miles to the top. It was a brisk 42 degrees up there but I wasn't cold. The parking lot was nearly full which surprised me, but then I realized that it was Balloon Fiesta and thousands of people are visiting from out of town. Many of them decided to drive up the mountain to check out the view.

As I was getting ready to make my descent a guy came up to me and starting asking me how I was able to ride all the way up to the top. He said that he was visiting from New Jersey and he was feeling light-headed just standing at that elevation. It does take some getting used to.

I tucked in my shirt, zipped up my jacket, put on my full-fingered gloves, and began the long descent. I'm still a little bit gun-shy from my recent crash, so I made an extra effort not to go too fast. When I got to the gas station at the bottom there was a very pretty sight. Three Dodge Vipers lined up in a row. Nice!

The temperature was in the low 70s at the bottom so I put away the full-fingered gloves and my jacket. There was a little bit of wind through Cedar Crest but Tijeras Canyon was smooth sailing. I made it home safely and Streak Ride #58 is a thing of the past.



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