OK…Today was officially billed as “make it…or break it day”! Meaning that if you made it thru the last 3 days of ultra-high mileage, difficult climbing and winds…you would, most likely, make it to the end!!! Well…I am happy to report…I made it! Yesterday was supposed to be the hardest day…but today was much harder. The winds, the early morning climb out of Albuquerque, the fatigue from yesterday, another 40+ miles on the interstate…and my nagging altitude headache (today topped out at over 8000 feet), were all conspiring against me! It was a tough mental day for everyone. You can see by the profile we did some serious climbing again today. The first big climbs were on backroads…the last were on the interstate. The problem with the interstate climbs is they are usually several miles long. They seem to go on forever…with your legs screaming in pain. I love the sound of an 18 wheeler approaching because I know there will be this huge rush of air that acts as a tailwind to help push you up the hill.
I rode solo for a good bit today. Everyone was pretty fatigued from Sunday’s ride and it was hard to get a consensus on how everyone wanted to approach today. Rob and Judd were ready for a recovery day, so was I! We rolled out together but soon separated on the climb out of town. I enjoyed the solo stretch between the hills and the interstate. Just me and the bike! At lunch, Judd decided to wait for our ride leader, Mike. That was the end of the planned “recovery ride”. Those two were hammering! I tried to hang on…they finally slowed in sympathy! Mike has been leading these tours for 15 years. He’s a great cyclist and has a ton of funny stories about life on the road. He, Judd and I rode into Las Vegas together and had dinner at the Rialto. That will be the plan from here on out. By the time you get to the hotel and take a shower, you just don’t feel like going out to eat…and eating is what you need most after these miles. You can see by the pics…I love to eat! Tomorrow, we are off to Tucumcari…more climbing…yipppeee!!! dd
: Me…about to take my first 12 mile withdrawal from the First Gravitational Bank of New Mexico. 48 mph on the way down…it took about 20 minutes. My legs were cramping from not peddling!
Today's ride profile. Climbing, followed by more climbing, followed by another 40+ miles battling headwinds on the interstate!
The other Dave climbing out of Albuquerque. He summers in Canada and winters in New Smyrna Beach, Fla. Hope to see him on some of our “Roadies” rides next fall!
I rode alone for a good bit of the morning (after the big climb out of Albuquerque). After yesterday, we all needed a little quite time. It was such a beautiful morning with very little traffic...I enjoyed the time alone.