04/08/06

Location =  San Antonito to Sandia Crest  
Distance =  40.63
Time =  3:19:20
Ave. Speed =  12.2
Max. Speed =  40.0
Monthly Dist. =    191.34
Yearly Dist. =  814.30

Don drove us around the mountain to the "Y", where we parked for a training ride up to the crest. Our plan was to climb to the top, then ride down, and climb back up to the ski area.

There is a reason behind all of this training. About a month ago, I let Don talk me into signing up for a road bike race. It's called the Iron Horse Classic, and it involves trying to beat a train, travelling from Durango to Silverton, in Colorado. It's about 50 miles, and 8500 feet of climbing. I think it goes over two passes, above 11,000 feet. You can check it out at Iron Horse Classic

Don and I started our climb at a pretty fast clip, but I faded after about 4.5 miles. I made it to the top in 1:43:00, which is a pretty fast time for me, and I felt fairly strong, doing it. Not riding the 22 miles from home to the bottom of the mountain, may have had something to do with it. It was only moderately cold at the top, probably around 40, but we didn't stick around for very long. Of course, N.D. waited 9 minutes, just for me to arrive.

We rode down to the car, had a gatorade, and then climbed up to the ski area, which is a little less than halfway to the top. Our goal is to climb all the way up to the crest, twice. That will be a pretty good simulation of what we will be facing in Colorado.

On the second descent to the car, a man jumped into the middle of the road waving a big stick. He clearly wanted to ask me something. He asked if I knew whether Sulphur Canyon was above, or below us. I didn't know, but I told him that we were about 3 miles from the highway, so he said, then it must be up, and off he went. About a mile further down the road, I passed Sulphur Canyon. I hope he made it back to his car without going too far out of his way.

It was a beautiful sunny day, with temps in the 40s to the 60s. I saw a hawk circling around at the bottom of the mountain, just before I made it back to the car.



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