Wow - Today's ride left me hammered but in a good, I accomplished something sort of way. The last two days have been fun for me as I've had the opportunity to ride with some guys who it seems like I know pretty well because of their blogs, yet with whom I had previously never ridden. Yesterday it was Matt and today it was JE. Unfortunately for JE the ride didn't start off well when he realized - after driving downtown to meet me at my office - that his road shoes were at home. I know the feeling as last year, after driving to Park City and registering for the Deer Valley ICUP, I returned to the car to change only to realize I'd left my mountain shoes at home! Luckily, JE doesn't live too far away and 25 minutes later he was back in the parking lot ready to roll out.
The plan was to ride up Emigration Canyon with a detour through Emigration Oaks. That 2 mile section of road always hurts, regardless of how fit you may (or may not, as was the case today!) be, as it winds its way up, up and up. I don't think it's a coincidence that Bart's house happens to sit right at the highest point of the climb - talk about a killer commute home after work!
After suffering up the climb we descended to the main road where JE started down to meet with a tax professional and I continued on to the Little Mountain summit. At the top I decided to drop down the other side for some extra climbing, flipping a U-turn at the junction with state highway 65. I entertained the idea of continuing towards Big Mountain to see what condition the road was in, but figured I probably should get back to the office. On the way down Emigration I decided to turn off the main road and climb back up into Emigration Oaks. This was the road we had descended earlier and coming down it hadn't seemed too steep. Well, let's just say that my perception of grade isn't very accurate because it kicked my butt! Luckily the climb up this side isn't quite as long and after more suffering I found myself back at Bart's house. I dropped down the other side and enjoyed a nearly continuous downhill run back to work.
Overall I ended up with 2:20. Given tomorrow's forecast, that will probably end up being my long ride for the week. Plus, I'm only 40 minutes shy of my hourly goal for the week so I'll probably just ride with my son in the morning. This was by far the most intense effort of 2008 and while it wasn't exactly scheduled in the top secret training plan, I figured since I decided to skip the St. George ICUP race I needed to replace the suffering I would have enjoyed on the dirt with some of the same on the road.
Oh yeah, I should state for the record that the weather was amazing today. Absolutely fantastic. However, I was surprised by how many riders I saw with bare legs and arms. I admit it was warm (I think the high was 57), but not that warm!
Dec08: Restrictions in both Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons have been lifted. -
7 hours ago