On Thursday, whaddya know! Ursula, Lynda, and my training plans were exactly the same: 2 1/2 hours at an easy to moderate pace. At 10am and a crisp 32 degrees, we headed out to preview some of Day 2, along with a smattering of trail that we would not ride during camp. I chose gears for today's outing while Lynda was on her SS FS.
We rode Racecourse which had techy, ledgy climbs through washes followed by doubletrack descents with spectacular views of the Pine Valley Mountains.
|Ursula would agree, by no means is this area flat! It is just so wide open that it appears to be.|
The Barrel Cacti Trail was all me! Rocky climbs and descents where it was good to follow the leader as I kept wondering where the heck the trail was. It was just rock drop-off after rock drop-off after rock-drop off. Being able to follow Lynda's line was most beneficial during the "Descent of Death." I was happy to be able to clean it, albeit with big eyes and white knuckles!
|No room for error on the Descent of Death.|
Once you commit on this one, there is no getting off ... voluntarily. I think I surprised Lynda, but Indy ('09 Specialized Era) overcame the forces of gravity and held on to the trail, although I think it a bit of a stretch to call that "trail."
|Zen Trail courtesy of Adam Lisonbee|
The Zen Trail reminded me of the large granite rock section at Conyers. Huge slabs of grippy sandstone. I was climbing grades that would be impossible back home. There were many cairns guiding you over the vast expanse of rock. Momentum was key on this terrain as there were quite a few punchy climbs. Earlier Coach had told me that you should session a section no more than 3 times; after that, you just learn the wrong line. But then she had to tell us about this one particular climb that she tried the weekend before. After 18 tries, she got it! Do as I say, not as I do??
Toward the end of Zen, I was feeling the day's effort. As I suspected and Lynda confirmed, we were going harder than the plan called for. Fortunately, the fun factor out ruled the training plan. I do have one question: how can there be so much POWER in such a little tiny frame? I think Coach's L2 is my L3!
Not knowing what to expect over the next 3 days, 2 of which would be on my SS, I spun my legs out on the way home. Today's effort was 3 hours, 20+ miles, 2500 feet of climbing, mostly upper L2, but with plenty of L5 spikes to give me a good swift kick in the pants!
How cool to be able to access such a vast network of trails right outside your front door!
|Coach and her understudies.|