The Five Stages of the Mount Evans Hill Climb

 

Ten years ago, when I was newer to Colorado, I naively signed up for the Mount Evans Hill Climb. I drove the course a few weeks before the race, having no idea what I was getting into. My body betrayed me with an ill-timed cold, which doubled as a convenient reason to bail on the race.

I chalked it up to the cold, but really I was just scared – of the elevation gain, the altitude, the exposure.

Most every summer since then, as the date of Mount Evans approached, I would think really hard about lining up in Idaho Springs, but could never bring myself to do it. Timing, travel, or total lack of training always seemed to be ready excuses.

Until this year, 10 days before the race, when – thanks in part to some encouragement from the Rodeo crew – I finally peer pressured myself into signing up for the 28 mile ascent of the highest paved road in North America.

I made it to the start line this time. And tried to weather the various mental stages of such a singular challenge.

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Oredigger Classic Crit: A few photos and a few words

Yesterday was the kick off of crit season and the second race with riders under the Rodeo banner. (The first was the Carter Lake road race done by Patrick Charles).

The course for the crit was almost as brutal as can be created for crit racing. A short and intense wall led into the start-finish area, followed by a mean climb in to a headwind, followed by a fast s-turn descent through some tight 90 degree corners… followed by that first brutal hill again. The effort profile for the course actually looked like perfectly spaced interval efforts. Sometimes only a few hundred watts and some coasting were required, but a few times per lap the wattage spiked to 500-800 watts for extended periods during the tough bits. The net effect was that the races all but shattered shortly after starting and often became loosely spaced TT efforts for dropped racers. There was nowhere to hide from the course, nowhere to sit in and rest, each racer just had to go go go until the bell.

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Salida RR – State Road Championships

This is a repost from the 2013 season. We are selecting a few member’s blog posts to show here in order to fill out the Rodeo vibe while we get 2014 up and running.

“&^*#$^!!!! NEVER WORK ON YOUR BIKE ON RACE DAY!”

These are the words I muttered to myself on my back patio at 11:07 this last Sunday morning. I had just threaded a new rear shifter cable into it’s housing only to find out that it was about six inches too short to do the job. Turns out it was a front shifter cable! More $@%@! No matter, I had a complete bike in the basement that I could rob another cable from. I promptly removed and installed that cable only to find that it was about 1/4″ too short as well.

“WHAT AM I DOING HERE RIGHT NOW, I’M SUPPOSED TO BE ON MY WAY TO SALIDA”

 

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