Tuesday, September 2, 2008
1 September 2008 - Happy Labor Day!
Rather than being lazy on Labor Day (as one should!) I got up early and met my brother for a long ride. It was awesome! The morning was cool, traffic was nonexistent, and my legs felt great. We began about 10 miles or so east of Camden and did a loop to Hartsville and back. Nothing to brag about, averaged 15.6 mph, but it felt good.
Cool note (at least I think so): about 16 miles from finishing up, we stopped on a bridge in a swamp to take a breather. I've got this thing about water so I crossed the road to look around. About 15 feet below the bridge a water moccasin was just floating there as if he (or she, I didn't ask) hadn't a care in the world. In its own environment, this deadly terrible thing that was better off wearing tire tracks (after all, "the only good snake is a dead snake!") was a fascinating creature of God, surely with a reason and purpose. It looked almost poetic as it swam off gracefully, never acknowledging our presence. Okay, end of note.
I was entered in the 2008 Assault on Mt. Mitchell and for the rider I am, I feel I did well. I made it all the way to the campground in Marion before I threw my bike in the ditch! Just kidding, but I did have to bail in Marion. I have ridden the 14.xx miles up Hwy. 80 from Marion to the Parkway, and suffered. I knew with Spartanburg 74 hilly miles behind me, I was not ready to assault anything, let alone a mountain. So, rather than throwing my bike in a ditch I turned in it to one of the incredible volunteers (what a group of servant-hearted people!) and hopped a bus for the top of Mitchell so I could see my brother cross the finish line in a hair over 9 hours (on his first attempt at Mitchell!). Another buddy of mine I ride with on occasion made it in 11 hours, but hey, anybody who finishes this ride is an awesome rider.
So, why did I say all that? Because I am training for the 2009 Assault on Mt. Mitchell on May 18, 2009 and I AM GOING TO THE TOP, on my bike, NOT A BUS! I don't have to be first, don't want to be last, I just want to finish. My plan for the coming months involve lots of miles and dropping some weight. It's difficult to be a fat mountain climber.