Monday, May 19, 2008

Hells Canyon And Filling The Pack At Hood

I had a free weekend from racing to start the month, so Charlene and I went jet boating with my family up the Snake River/Hells Canyon. It'd been at least 11 years since I'd done it before and it was great! The canyon gets better and better as you go up.
We also got to go on a couple good bike rides, one good dirt bike ride, an 11 mile hike down the old railroad tracks from Troy to Kendrick, and meet up with some of my old classmates for some beers. All-in-all, a good way to spend five days away!

As soon as we got back, the George's Time Trial Stage Race started and the Bob's guys rocked it! JRose won the overall. Results are on Spondoro.com.
The local race was followed immediately by a Mothers Day hike. We found a new place to hike out in the Owyhees that I'm going to have to go back to to see more of! This was the turn around point for us, an impressive waterfall with spring run off along Squaw Creek.
With only a two day break from racing, the Bob's team started the (likely) hardest race of the entire year! The Mt Hood Cycling Classic, a six day, six stage race that started in Portland this year. I hung in to finish it, but it was the closest I've ever been to being eliminated due to tough courses and tough racers.
Here's a pic of Bob's womens teammate Sarah Barber starting the first stage in downtown Portland, a prologue of only 1.7 miles. The men's winner averaged 37.1 mph!!! I averaged 34.2 mph to tie my own teammate Kevin Rowe at 2 minutes and 59.45 seconds... yes, that's fifty nine point four five seconds. Good enough for 77th out of 146.

The second road race, at 99.8 miles with 11,000 feet of climbing seemed a little daunting to be doing with some of America's best professional racers, but that was the plan. Eventually we ended up here:

Once reaching this point, I could hardly move anymore. On the way up the finishing climb to the Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Hill, it was a weird sensation to be overheating from exertion when there was 10 feet of snow in every direction you looked.

On another note, 1.21 gigawatts wasn't enough. Rory Southerland pulled five minutes out of me in the 18.5 mile time trial! Luckily, he did substantial damage to the rest of the pro's out there too, so I don't feel quit as bad about things.

One last thing... Tad Hamilton and Eric Rumps RULE, even if they did get lost on the way to the start of the second road race and didn't make it into the follow caravan until almost half way. Without their rockin' assistance (director sportifs) all week long, there is not one tiny chance that I (or likely JRose for that matter) would have made it to the point where that picture of Hood was taken.

Six days of fun away and now it's good to be back!

Oh yeah, can't forget to include the part that proves that I can't possibly be 28 years old.
On the way over to Portland, we stopped for gas and a burger in Boardman, OR, where we found all sorts of fun.
First, a tuckered out gas pumper that doesn't mind where he sleeps.

Second, a sign that was all too easily adjusted... can you pick out the adjustments?

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