Saturday, May 23, 2009

6,000 ft. of climbing

This morning I finally made it to the summit of AF canyon on my road bike. I've ridden up past Pine Hollow several times only to find snow still on the road, but with the recent warm weather all of the snow is now gone.

I left the house at 6 AM, which is usually my routine for Saturday morning long rides since I try to get most of my ride done before the family rolls out of bed. I love the ride up AF canyon in the morning as the sun is rising and its nice and quiet. I noticed the river today was especially high, in fact in one spot it only needed another 6 inches and the water would be on the road. Also, just past the turnoff for the Timpooneke campground, they are working on installing a culvert pipe, so the road is torn up and you have to dismount and cross on foot. The road after Pine Hollow is still closed to cars and so they haven't completed cleaning it of all of the rocks, trees and other debris.

It's always a trick deciding on gear for the ride up the canyon because when you leave at 6 AM, it's still a bit chilly. I've found my arm warmers take care of the chill. Once you start climbing up the canyon though, it doesn't take long to work up a good sweat and then the arm warmers come off. The problem though comes back when you hit the higher elevations and lower temperatures, so back to the arm warmers. Then before you descend you absolutely have to put on a hat, change to full finger gloves and at least slip on a light jacket to keep the wind from chilling you to the bone. I end up having these bulging rear pockets in my jersey to carry the extra gear.

Anyhow, I made it to the top of the canyon and took a few pictures and then started to descend down the other side towards Sundance and Provo Canyon. I was a couple of miles down the mountain when I came around a corner and this dude on a mountain bike was all over the road on my side (he was climbing from the Sundance side)! I think he was day dreaming or something but luckily we both saw each other and avoided a collision. It wasn't two minutes later that I came accross two guys on their road bikes climbing away and one of them was on my side of the road. I thought he saw me but I guess not because he didn't even budge. I had to get about 2 ft. from the shoulder in order to pass by him. People need to pay attention! I know when you're climbing you get in a zone because of the pain, but I'm pretty sure that the issue is that these guys weren't expecting anyone on the road as they have a false sense of security with the road still closed to cars.

I decided to see how my legs would hold up climbing Squaw Peak after the AF Canyon climb. Suprisingly, I felt pretty good and did my TT to the 4 mile mark in record time. Nothing felt better than making it to the overlook. I snapped some good pictures and then headed back to Lehi.

So there it is. 6,000 ft. of climbing in one morning.

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