This is the day I feared most of our entire 59 day adventure across the country. For starters, it is not only long at 186 km, but was believed to be over 3,400 m of climbing. The last Ironman I did had the same stats and I not only knew what to expect, but don't think I've gone longer then 66km in a ride this spring. I knew I could be in trouble ... but experience counts for a lot! I had done this before and I knew that if I went slow enough, ate well, and stayed hydrated I could do it. What I wasn't expecting was for the muscle memory to kick in so soon.
We started out as a group on a beautiful road, meandering by dairy and produce farms.
We took a small detour to Agassiz where the boys had decided to stop for a second breakfast and Donna and I, dubbing ourselves the rabbits headed out and giving the guys something to chase. I did grab a home made cinnamon bun though that was devoured on the way to Hope.
We had a bit of a headwind going in to Hope, but worked well together to keep our speed steady and head pivoting from side to side to admire the beauty all around us. The mountains, streams, water falls were stunning. We got caught in Hope, not a bad thing as we all made some wrong turns, but it got sorted out and we started up the first climb of the day and in to our first heat of the trip.
There wasn't a lot of stopping to explore today as the challenge of the route was daunting, but with the climbs breaking people up we all rode at our own speed. The guys would regroup and I would later catch up to them as they stopped in Manning Park for ice cream. This was around the 100 km mark and I was starting to feel stronger, and faster, and more like my fit self.
In the end I summited Sunday Summit with Chris and the two of us worked together until 14 km to go, and then Chris found is turbo button and my legs started to tire. As we descended in to Princeton I noticed a pub, hoping they would sell off sales, no luck, but the hotel was a short ride away and celebrations were had.
There is little more rewarding then ending a ride with a beer and good friends!
Total: 191 km, 2,401m