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son of death ride-r

Sunday,  08/28/11  03:06 PM

Yesterday I rode the Son of Death Ride, "the toughtest one-day ride in American", and man, it was tough.  138 miles, 17,500' of climbing, and ... 109 degrees.  The motto of the ride is "that which doesn't kill you makes you stronger" and I'm not dead so I must be really strong :)  Actually I am still in recovery, so we'll see.  The ride took me 13:54 and it seemed like all of that was uphill, with a lot of it in first gear, barely ticking over the pedals.

Anyway I survived - yay me! - and here are some pictures in case they are of interest:

the route: 138 miles, 17,500' of climbing
there's a huge climb up Nine Mile Canyon to start,
then many miles of rollers at 8,000',
then a deep descent to the Kern River,
before turning around and climbing to Sherman Pass (!),
blasting along the plateau,
and finally a wild descent back down Nine Mile Canyon

Nine Mile Canyon, here I come

long shadows in the early morning

looking back down, lots of climbing already but lots more to come

beautiful meadows

rollers through the pines along Kern plateau

so far so good

over 8,000' all the way

still smiling after 53 miles, time to descend

awesome views into the Kern River Valley

the Kern River!  halfway point
(click to enbiggen)

taking a cool break although it is 109 here (!)

onward, back up to Sherman Pass

the view back down - wow, I've come a long way

yay, the top (9,200') after 15 miles and 3 hours of climbing at 7-10%

back through the rollers

view down Nine Mile Canyon as dusk falls

yay!  made it in 13:54
I am pretty proud of myself

This seems like one of those things where you do it once, to say you've done it; not sure I want to do it again.  But maybe by next week I'll be looking forward to it :)