Wednesday, May 24, 2017

And away we ride!

The Fantastic Four ready to roll: Dana, Autumn, Roger and Kathy 
Well, we made it through day one of our mini adventure.  If, as they say, 'what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger,' then we should be a good bit stronger now!

Stuck like bugs to our rear wheels on the downhills
I think that the day's ride was basically a cakewalk for our daughter, Dana. She is fit and strong and an excellent bike handler. She makes maximum use of the tandem heading downhill and then has no trouble sprinting up the hill. For me, though - not so much. At 66 miles and about 6,000' of climbing, it was the most difficult, longest duration and toughest ride I have done since October. 

But it was beautiful!  Oh, man - the mountains still have great snow cover and the creeks are full . . . Our temps today were great and we had a nice little cloud cover to keep the sun off us. It was just a sparkling day in the saddle. And, we did get through it in one piece. So that's something. 
The road to Paradise
We started by climbing up the Old Sherwin Grade. It's an alternative to the highway, and has some great stretches through the community of Paradise, along Lower Rock Creek, through pines and aspens - and always climbing.  Well, almost always.  About 700 feet from the summit, you descend maybe 250-300 feet, which means you have a bit more left to climb when you thought you were almost done!

Breakfast was at Tom's Place, at the top of Sherwin Summit, and then we headed for our second climb of the day, Deadman Pass. From there, it's a jolly descent down to Lee Vining.  That stretch of road may be my favorite in all the land, and today it was spectacular. I am familiar with the road, and that may be one reason I was almost comfortable going downhill. I hope that I am regaining my confidence.
Coming off Deadman Pass to Mono Lake and Lee Vining

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