Friday, November 16, 2012

As we enter the 8th week of the 2012 Cyclocross season, I wanted to pause for a moment and reflect on what has been going on: lots of fun!  Team Eastside Cycles has had a great showing thus far in both the SICX series and the Waffle Cross series.  The courses have been fun and challenging.  I tried to layout a course on paper, enough to get a feel for how tough it can be to even plan the course not to mention setting it up!

I’ve had a great time chatting up everyone at the races and battling it out with the BYRDS.  Maybe I’ve had a good time racing with BYRDS because they’ve only beaten me a handful of times (usual suspects) and have only put me in the tape once or twice…  It seems we don’t get to see this amount of fellow rides at any other time during the year!  In fact, there are so many people at the races, I rarely have time to talk to everyone I’d like to catch up with! 

So a big thank you to everyone coming out every weekend.  It has been great to see you and be a part of the excitement we are all making the cross scene here in Boise.
A few of my highlights of the season so far:
·        Working with Ryan Faber to build up a new cross assault bike
·        Racing CAT2 and getting beaten by a ‘new’ rider in CAT3 at Sandy point (Brad from the Wood River Valley). 
·        Visiting Victor, Idaho for Moose Cross and beating Brad two days in a row – the second day took some doing…but the swag was very much worth the effort and trip!
·        Eating Waffles at Waffle Cross!  Good call on the ‘crystallized’ sugar – or Belgian sugar – whatever – magic.  (much better than choking down a waffle and a PBR during the Waffle race)
·        Racing Kuna and getting Flocked again – but still grabbing the last podium spot.
·        Racing Nampa after a day of broken sleep interlaced with flu like purging but still enjoying the course and trying to keep Jeremy Whitman at bay!  I also had a chance to race with Mark Schafer for most of the race before he crushed me at the finish…
·        Being called up first for Turkey Cross #4 before Brent Gorman or Shawn Mitchell as the series point leader for Pro1/2!  (unless both Brent and Shawn don’t show up or finish, it seems I have a good shot at 3rd for the season…)
·        Both Angela and I holding the series lead for the SICX series at the moment! (Wmns Cat3 and Pro/1/2 respectively)
Looking forward to seeing you all at States and the SICX finale December 1st and 2nd!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Charity Ride 2012

This was the second year we participated in a charity ride. was the 2012 Charity Ride beneficiary.  They are a non-profit organization bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing countries.

Cory Bolen Provided excellent maps for the rides!
Riders donated $15 and then headed out on one of three ride options to suit various desires of difficulty.  Similar to last year, there was a 50mile, a 40mile and a 23mile ride mapped out.

Last year we had about 8-10 people on the 50mile route, this year I opted for the coined "Yam" ride.  The "Russet" was the 40 mile and the "Bourgeois" was the 50mile option.  Themes of the ride names were chosen as a nod to our partner sponsor, Boise Fry Company, who took care of all of us post ride and donated 20% of all of their sales for most the the afternoon to the charity as well!

Green Belt Roll Call!
Nine of us showed up at 10:30 to do the Yam and everyone patiently waited around for me to run into Eastside Cycles to purchase some new water bottle cages for my new Ridley cross bike and inflate Angela's tire again as I was unable locate and fix a leak in her tire before the ride.  (I would have to add air another 3 times during the ride, but it worked until I find time to try and fix it again!)

Yes, it was smokey out there, but it didn't hamper our spirits or hinder our riding did, however decrease our visibility!


Bryan Warnock and Rick Holscher leading up Sidewinder

The group slinkied up Crestline trail and grouped up again before climbing Sidewinder.  The trails were not very busy Saturday!  Seems everyone was hesitant to ride in the smoke.  But as fellow cyclist Dave Byers said in response to "should I ride in this smoke?" he replied: "Ride. Always."  I wonder if he got the information on our charity ride?  Similarly to many others, our Thursday night rides have been a bit lite as of late!

Angela following Jeremy

Still smiling up Fat Tire Traverse!

Enjoying the Tailings Art

Rolling out Rocky Canyon: Fall colors are here!

Happy Rick and Nancy Odel on the last climb of the day

During the ride Rick received a call from his daughter Danny who informed Rick that the basement was flooding!  She was going to use a shop vac to get most of the water up and lay down towels and limit water usage until Rick could call a plumber and finish out the ride!  (Danny is in the 7th grade!) :)
Rick arranging for a plumber on Rock Island
Post ride we all enjoyed ample amounts of fries, gourmet burgers and beer!  It was a pleasure to catch up with the three Red Lantern riders who did the 50mile (altered) route; good seeing you, Jared Rammel, Todd Meir and Ben Biggerstaff.  We did not get a chance to catch up with any of the Russet riders!  Anyone?

Yam riders:
Eric Zuber
Angela Haener
Rick Holsher
Bryan Warnock
Nancy Odel
Tyler Smith
Logan (Tyler's nephew)
Jeremy (didn't catch your last name!)

It was a pleasure!  Hope to see more of you out next year, as well as the fast approaching Cross Season!


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Multiday Adventure

Just a quick entry to keep some fresh content and exercise my day dreaming…
I’ve always been intrigued by multi day bike travel since Angela bought our first pannier back in 2007 when we were deciding how to experience Ireland.  Since then we have taken three large trips, the largest of which was a 3 week, self supported trip in the rain over 5 countries during which we learned a lot.
Then it was easy to be sucked into the endurance mountain bike events with all of the strong riders on our team and in the valley.  It only seems natural to me what the next adventure step would be: multiday mountain bike travel and; GASP – RACING! 
I wanted to share my thoughts and ideas in order to draw out your experiences and ideas in the hope of creating more adventures together.  Local Multi day trips, signing up together for organized multi day events or creating a local multi day route/event to share with others local and out of state!

From XXC_Mag_#17: Frame Bags for a 400mi race
 A group of friends from Boise (not including myself) are headed down to Moab to do a self supported White Rim tour.  Bob trailers are being gathered, dry runs being made up Rocky Canyon and excitement mounting.  I wish them smooth travels and pleasant memories to be made.  Looking forward to hearing about the trip!
It seems multi day, self supported mountain and/or cross bike racing is growing at a reasonable rate as of late, or perhaps I’m now more aware of events and gear options.  A few of us on the team have been talking about bike packing.  One has even gone so far as outfitting his mountain bike with frame bags and route planning.  I hope to join on a 2-3 day jaunt this Fall if time permits.  I have not committed as far as gear is concerned, as frame bags can get a bit costly.

If you have read this far; Perhaps you too are interested in exploring this world on two wheels under your own effort.  Do you want to learn what it would be like to be self supported on an overnighter MTB trip?  Maybe before the snow flies we can do an overnighter to Mores Campground and back?  Anyone?  Baby steps to multi day adventure! J

Freeload Racks from NZ on a Full Suspension MTB
 Recently fueling my excitement was being exposed to XXC Magazine showcasing Endurance Mountain biking including accounts of Southern California Stage Coach 400, TransIowa, San Juan Hut to Hut, Dirty Kanza 200, and various other multi day adventures stateside and abroad as well as fueling ideas from top endurance athletes such as Amanda Carey.  Needless to say the adventure detector in my brain was pegged. 

It was in this magazine I came across a rack system that I thought to be ingenious.  I had been looking for a front rack for my commuter (bottle opener included) and then thought this rack may fit many uses I’d like to explore at a reasonable cost!  This rack could convert any one of my bikes into a multi day rig, lugged or no.
We do have one experienced multi day endurance racer on our team and I hope by the end of next year we have two or three more!  Two of us at this point have committed to and signed up for a first taste of multi day endurance event; the BrekEpic in August next year.  There are currently 5 Boise riders signed up.  Perhaps one of the closer multi day events(staged or self supported) will also make our calendars, one never knows, but they are in the back of my mind.  And maybe I can plant the seed in yours too?!  Can we gain enough interest to grow this idea into an Eastside Epic?  A yearly event?!
Here is to adventure; share, plan, prepare and execute!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Crestline Trail (McCall) - June 30th

The sign that carried more meaning than just the trail name…

While a good showing of Eastside riders headed for Galena lodge for the Grinder marathon Angela and I headed to McCall for some R&R and a long ride for myself.

Saturday morning greeted me with 45 degrees and clear skies. I mixed up two bottles of Perpetuem and two bottles of nuun and a 5th bottle of straight water to consume early in the ride. Further fueling consisted of Stinger products (two waffles, two gels and two chews!). Angela sent me off well with an egg sandwich to complement the morning’s coffee.

Heading north out of the Northwest passage campground we stayed at, crossing the inlet to Payette Lake, turn south for 50ft before heading left and swinging north on a gated road still within Idaho State Department of Lands property. Angela and I discovered these roads the night before while out for a walk. They are in excellent shape and gated, so no traffic! The roads are barely distinguishable from the contour lines on the McCall Mtb map, but they are there and worth taking! (best trail/road of the day). This service road paralleled the road to Upper Payette lake on the opposite side of the river for about 5 miles. Crestline trailhead is about 3-4 miles East and up from the bottom of the valley from the first road the crosses the river as you head north after leaving Payette Lake.

Passing one small lake on the way north I flushed out a herd of Elk (you can just make out two of them in the above photo). Other than that it is was brisk and quiet broken only by the occasionall roaring creek spewing ice cold, clear mountain water. This road section was over far too early and it was absolutely obvious when I had crossed over from IDL to Forest service roads. (muddy, rutted, giant water bars, downed trees; less maintained roads).
Overall the roads were great and provided views across the valley and you climb to the Crestline trailhead; somewhere in the 1,500-2,000ft climb range.

I was having a great time and feeling strong.  Finally I came across the first obstacle to climb over (vs going around).

Then the first drift that was easy to ride over:

And then I arrived at the trailhead.  I could not stay long as the mosquitoes where horrendous; only enough time to check cell service and send Angela an update “made it to trailhead; still peeing; 16miles to go!” You have to give your crew enough info to know you’re doing good and taking care of yourself! :)

The first ½ mile of trail only had two downed trees and meandered through an old burn area with gradual climbing.  I tested out the Maxxis Ikon tires and found their limit in the mud as I pushed my bike in a few inclined, muddy sections.

The trail occasionally spilled out into beautiful meadows surrounded by the remaining, standing burned trees in shallow marshes.

I started to keep the camera in the pocket as I practiced my cross re-mounts on a dozen downed trees before coming to the first significant creek crossing.

Luckily; all the downed trees provide options for you to cross without getting wet!  Shortly thereafter I encountered my first snow drift.  Up until now I was not thinking much about lingering snows or downed trees, but that would soon change.

But I was drawn deeper and deeper into the side country as I road picturesque single track...

The trail descends into two basins which proved to be very slow going.  There were close to 75 or so downed trees, varying in diameter from scraggly branches to home wreckers.  Some you could break some, trim branches and go over or under and others you had to put your bike on top, climb up, lower the bike and then jump down.  Not knowing the trail, a few times I had to cross some significant trees to find out there was a switch back and I had to cross the same tree(s) again.  

I was starting to get tired.  No more cross mounting for this guy.  I reverted to “scootering” my bike from downed tree to downed tree (right foot on left pedal, not straddling bike).
This was going to be a long day; and I had better get cell service again so Angela knows I will need more time before she should be legitimately worried (look for a moto guy to go ride the trail!).
I had only crossed the first drainage and was headed for the second which included a steep pitch that I suspected was a 1/2mile hike a bike over a ridge before descending into the Xterra course.  I laughed aloud to myself thinking of what Greg McRoberts had mentioned to me “Might find some snow out there, however.  You'd be amazed how much snow there still is up high”.  Yeah sure, I had seen and crossed some snow, but compared to the downed trees, snow was not the issue…until:

Now I had a decision to make.  I was only 5-6miles of trail in, and had 6-7miles left.  I suspected the other side of the ridge (facing south) would be clear as it was prior to this section.  There were sooooo many downed trees I had gone through, and it would take a few hours to backtrack; and that would mean backtracking.  I studied the map, collectively, for about a ½ hour as I contemplated my situation.  No time to be brazen.  You’re alone, far from help and on a time line.  But what would it hurt to go as far as I felt comfortable (within the bounds mentioned).  I pushed on, reached the snowline and started hiking with bike on board.  Within 30ft I had my first incident.

I had crossed too close to a rock (rocks are warmer, melt the snow on them, but not directly above them; leaving a shallow layer above a hole) and I sunk down, slipped and took the impact on the knee cap.  This is the kind of thing that happens when you push just a bit too far or too fast.  I had to verbally remind myself that “you’ve got to be more careful!”  I must be getting older.  I’m starting to parent myself.  Apparently I listened; as I’m currently writing with only the one small scab I received (outside of the dozen punctures and small abrasion from normal wear and tear).

I have never before picked a mountain bike route to avoid avalanche danger.  There were still sizable cornices on the ridge and I was climbing the leeward side.  Having picked the safest route up and across the face with exit strategies and safe zones identified, I filled two of my empty bottles with snow in hopes that I’d have more water later for my delayed adventure and pushed on.

I am not sure how long it took to climb to the ridge, but I made it; had cell service and a nice view of Payette, far below.  I was able to send Angela a picture (proof of life) and inform here that I had made it half way and to expect delays.  She was on the beach swimming with Kaiya while I was jogging my bike across snow fields in the blinding sun.  You’ve got to love mountain lake towns! J

Crossing over the ridge I found another snow field I had to cross.  Finding the obstacle humorous at that point, I had to text Angela the picture before I conferred with the map on how to proceed.  This section actually went rather fast.  Aiding me in my route were little rock cairns poking out of the snow indicating I was actually on the trail or had found it again!

I could not help but wonder how a fat bike would have fared if I had one.  Though carrying it would not have been very pleasant.  Besides, adding another pony to the stable always calls into question the necessity of all the bikes currently sitting idle waiting for some TLC!
Once I approached the south side of the pass the snow cleared revealing a rocky ridge to descend into the final lake before the Xterra course.  It was here that I started noticing saw dust!  The trail was cleared!  I was FLYING!  Making great time!  The last 5 miles of the trail were going to be 10X faster than the last 10!  I had service and relayed the information to Angela at the beach.  We had planned to meet at the trail head and then grab lunch in town. 

I love the smell of saw dust.  And I swear, one of the larger trees that someone cleared smelled like a bourbon barrel…it was beer-thirty.

I descended to the Xterra loop, crossed the outlet of Blackwell Lake and there were 8 day hikers there to greet me.  I was dressed in the Bob’s kit – white/blue and defiled with sweat, blood, mud and charcoal from all the downed trees.  I’m sure I was a sight; one that would dissuade anyone from picking up the sport of mountain biking…

The final few miles went by relatively fast with two punchy climbs out of the Xterra loop followed by the new section they bladed in.  I’m tempted to come up to the Xterra triathlon to see all those poor participants covered in the black, loose soil that will inevitably cover them from head to toe before their 6mile run.  Ehh-gads.  No thanks.  That course was dangerous moon dust when I did it years ago.  Now it is dangerously loose dirt hidden in the partial sun/shaded woods on a good pitch.  No thanks. Not for a race! 

A text miscommunication between Angela and I left me to finish the ride along the lake and back to the Northwest passage campground.  The road miles (5?) went by fast and allowed me to get some miles in without getting off the bike and dragging it under a downed tree or over a snow field, which, I think, would be better endurance training than a hike-a-bike over a snowed in mountain pass.

Aside from the loose/dusty descent on the Xterra loop, I’d highly recommend this trail as I did it, but later in the season when it is cleared of snow and trees!  Finish the route by taking the west side of the Xterra loop vs going by Blackwell Lake.  I’m just not a fan of ‘new’ ATV trails… perhaps it will settle in a year or two, perhaps not.  Let me know!


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Mt. Ogden 100k - 8.18.12 (Eric Zuber)

You may lose the race, but don’t lose the lesson…
Mt. Ogden 100k Re-cap; August 18th
I will preface this recap by summarizing where I was in preparation for this race; underprepared.  Two weeks or so prior to this race Boise was shrouded in smoke where you could not see the foothills from downtown.  For fear of respiratory effects and lack of motivation; I did not ride in the smoke.  Between the HC100 on July 21st and this race, I had taken a moderately hard 6hr ride in the heat to Bogus and back, at least 50miles, and a great crew and I did an extended weekend in Bend, OR for some leisurely riding.  While I had ridden between races, a few more training rides would have been in order.
Again, Angela helped ensure that I ate and hydrated well the week leading up to the race.  I probably tailed off on the hydration the two days before as during the course of two 3hr drives we never had to use a rest stop; first indication of coming up short of preparation goals.  We knew it was going to in the mid 90s and hydration was going to be key.
Leading up to the race I also did not take time to study the map and ask for additional information if needed.  A nice map was provided, but it lacked aid station information and mileage.  I prefer to ride with bottles to monitor intake and keep weight off my back and need to know if I can manage between stations with two bottles ~2hrs, or if I need to take additional water.  I realized the lack of information provided the night before the race as I studied the map and tried to match up an e-mail describing the stations and trail names (which were not on the map).  Seemed geared to locals like the Point-2-Point race in Park City.  Hammer Nutrition was sponsoring the endurance race, but only Gel and HEED were mentioned; not Perpetuem, the endurance product Hammer makes which I use.  I had made up two bottles of Perpetuem and figured I could get by with other foods with the lack of race protein support.  Turns out, while packing, the little I had planned to bring, I didn’t.  No protein for sustained endurance.  I was disappointed in Hammer’s support; but I didn’t bring what I needed.  Lesson 1: bring what you want; regardless of aid support provided.  To make up for my short comings, Angela made some PBJs; Sans Crust ala’ Ron Miller and had some chopped sweet potatoes all of us HC100 racers will remember should I be able to eat when I came through at about 40miles in as we started the second lap.  I was going to go for it; normal fueling or no.

We lined up.  Pros first; there were a lot of them ~20.  Getting the top 20 would have been nice, but looked difficult to start. (Yes, I was aiming high)  Behind the Pro Men ~10 pro women lined up.  My goal was not to be ‘chicked’.  I must state that measuring my performance by not getting beat by a girl goes into more depth than the simple fact of being beat by a girl.  Women racers are strong.  It seems if I’m having a good day, I can stay ahead of them.  I can finish behind the lead pro men and in front of the lead pro women.  A good place for a solid ‘expert’ category mountain biker.
Shotgun start: Literally.  Aimed, perhaps with a live load to rain down on the lodge as the pros rode off and the experts lined up next.  One minute later we were off as well.  Neutral roll out around the parking lot before we hit the first double track ascent with approximately 12miles of climbing of about 3,500-4,000ft.  I was the first in my group to hit dirt.  I sighted the pro women directly ahead and started passing.  I picked off all but one pro woman and even got two pro men before undulating single track filed us up.  I was top 20.
I managed to pass about 4 other male pros and that remaining pro woman and tried to settle in for the remainder of the first climb.  While passing one pro I was told to “take it easy, turbo”; to his credit was probably sound advice.  We climbed, climbed, and climbed some more.  I was starting to think I had gone out too hot; considering I was already dreading climbing this section a second time!  I was in a good position to monitor my placement, however.  I was first expert.  About 2 miles from the top of the climb after a few pros had passed me back two guys passed me that I vaguely recalled from our neutral roll-out.  I was dropping to 3rd of 4th expert.  No problem, long race right?!

We started our decent.  There was a good gap between me and the next guy forward and aft.  This was great.  I could see the trail, pick my line and not suck dust (some of the trails were VERY dusty).  For a few miles I was doing great.  Soon my hands started to get fatigued.  I pulled over to let out some pressure in my front tire and continued.  Much better.  I finished the decent and was a little over 11 mintues behind the lead pro group.

The second climb.  I was told by a gal that this climb was mellow and lead to some nice descents that you could rail.  This was a section that we’d only do once during the race.  Looking back, she was right.  It was a mellow climb, but I was starting to fade already.  I managed to finish this shorter climb ~3miles, while maintaining my position before descending. 

The descending was fast with speed-checking switchbacks.  I was recovering a bit from the climbs hoping in time the gel and chews I had eaten would get my energy back in check.  At about this time I heard something unfamiliar from my drive train.  It almost sounded like HC100 last year when my chain went over and around my rear derailleur pulley, but the vibrations were felt all through the bike up to my rear shifter mech.  I pulled over to check it out and that is when a pack of 3 riders caught me in a raging storm of dust.  I found nothing visibly wrong with my derailleur and got back in line to finish the descent.  It was a slow, dusty, confidence crushingly slog behind three riders, but I figured I’d  coast and try to rest.  The derailleur problem subsided momentarily allowing me to continue a ‘race’ effort.  Soon after there was a junction where the 25 and 50k course came in which caused some confusion for the 3 riders ahead of me.  One called out to go left, and I rolled past them and was able to gap them again in the finial mile of descent to the lowest part of the course.  Upon shifting down to climb out of this sun baked, low shrub, high grassland, Boise like section of the course the rear derailleur problem surfaced again.  Pulling over and conceding 5 more positions, I could find nothing wrong with the derailleur so I continued on with its sporadic grinding.
A few miles later we came to another aid station with technical support.  I fueled up (no protein) and let the mechanics find my problem: seized rear derailleur pulley.  They freed it, lubed it and sent me on my way.  We started climbing back to the resort start/finish aid station.  I really started to feel my hot start.  I had to pull over a few times to consume some water and let my throbbing head return to a normal state.  After each time I pulled over I started feeling like a new man; but that only lasted about 5-10 minutes.  I lost a few more spots before I finally reached the ~3mile pavement section leading directly to the start/finish.  The sun was out, I was dry, it was hot; bad combo.  This is where the lead pro woman passed me back.  I held her wheel.  For 37seconds.  Not a concern anymore, I needed a second wind.  I passed and chatted with a racer with the plate #1.  He explained it was an alphabetical thing; not that he won this race last year.  He was pretty sure he would pull out when he reached the end of this climb in one more mile. Neither one of us was looking forward to that that first climb again.  He pulled out.  I pulled over.

Angela was there at the start/finish aid station again to make sure I had everything I needed.  Aid volunteers came to me to see what I needed as well (similar to park city P2P race support!)  I gave them two bottle to fill, handed off my bike to get the rear pulley lubed and was also brought an ice pack to put down my back by another aid volunteer!  I ate potatoes but couldn’t stand thinking of eating the PBJ – probably should have.  I washed my face and put back on my helmet to see 3 more woman pros pass by.  I audibly grumbled in frustration and Angela just said I wouldn’t make up those spots by standing here! 
Leaving the start/finish aid for my second lap I felt better, but not recharged.  My energy was waning as I started the dreaded ascent again.  I was mixing it up with a few other rides on the way up, back and forth.  Someone would bobble on a rocky section and I’d make it, but be slower on the not so steep sections and they would pass back.  I probably was losing a spot here and there.  And then the cramping started firing in my inner quads followed by my main quads.  I tried to exaggerate my full leg extensions to work out the cramping, seemed to work during the HC100, but I didn’t win this round.  I had to pull over before I fell over.  I assumed the squat position to keep my quads from binding up.  It has been about 3 years since this has happened to me.  I couldn’t stand up.  In about 5 minutes I was ready to continue.  During this first cramping session I lost 4 spots and another woman pro passed.  I backed way off, but the cramping didn’t follow suit.  I had to stop about 3 more times before making the summit and had also run out of water.   Things were looking dire.
Descending again went well and I made up a spot or two.  I came back down towards the resort parking lots where we had camped and came across Angela again.  This time all I could take was a kiss.  Thinking back, that was probably a lot for a grungy, dusty, sweaty and tired guy to ask, but I got it without hesitation. J
More descending to the lowest part of the course again (bypassing that ~3mile climb on the first lap).  I made up some more spots and then the derailleur wanted to voice its opposition again.  Knowing the problem now, I dug out the chain lube I was carrying and freed up the pulley while also soaking my glove – good for eating things.  I had to lube the pulley one last time before finishing the race.  Climbing out of the lowest part of the course was also my lowest moment.  Most of the trail was dry and sun exposed with continual gradual climbing.  I stopped just after the aid station, as the climbing began, to pee (no kidding) but had to kneel as I could not stand.  I drank some more and had a picnic with some chews while three more guys and the last pro woman to pass me trudged by.  I probably stopped 5 more times before hitting the final pavement, giving up an equal number of spots.  I did gain one spot back as I lightly slapped a guy on the thigh and said “You’re it!” and gave my last 4 hard-ish pumps to gap him by a few bike lengths.  He was not in for chasing, though the results show he was a mere 2 seconds behind me!  I would have thought at least 30; Timing.
In the end, I finished.  The showers didn’t show up, so a few of us used a hose and Angela was happy to rinse me down with frigid water that took my breath away, but left me cleaner and refreshed so I could try and put this race behind me.  After writing this; I’m pretty sure the bulk of the event is now past and I can focus on what’s to come.  “Oh Danny Boy; the cow bells, the cow bells are calling….from glen to glen to mountain side”…..
Z: 5th place Male (25-34): 6:50:02, 1:40:39 behind 1st pro.
42/74 100k Finishers
Familiar Lessons:
Lesson 1: Bring what you will want/need
Lesson 2: Again and again; hydrate, if you’re not using the loo every 1 ½ hours, you’re not hydrated
Lesson 3: Know your performance/body, if something is wrong; fuel, or back off your effort.
Lesson 4: Know the course days before hand to give time to question organizers (distances, elevation profiles, aid locations - pre-ride if you can).
Angela added this one for me:
Lesson 5: Don't blow your wad too soon... if a pro tells you to “take it easy, turbo”;  it's best to listen and sit back a little!
(waiting for all photos to post, hoping for one to purchase! :) )