Friday, October 17, 2008

Fixie the Loop!

In some kind of Quixotic delusion I decided to try to ride my fixie over the alpine loop yesterday. I've been meaning to do it all summer, and figured it was now or never. Lindsey accompanied me on her geared bike to act as a counterpoint to my stupidity and to carry the bulk of the tools.

The way we decided to go spanned only 49 miles, and we set off late on wednesday night, sleeping in Sandy. So the actual ride was short, but included two summits: the alpine loop, and the connection into the Highland area that skips the point of the mountain. It looked doable on paper, and we'd done Emigration canyon with the fixie and figured this path was a reasonable goal. I had my normal 46x15 gearing.

It was stupid hard. The first hill was like a joke:
See that brown strip pointing up and out of the right side of the picture? That's the same bloody hill, and it took its sweet time zigging up to the top. Somehow I made it, and rewarded myself with a plummet down the other side into Utah Valley, where an appropriately placed Wendy's supplied me with a delicious delicious frosty.

After a lazy lunch by the mouth of the canyon we headed up. The road got much narrower and more beautiful, with the chilly canyon air making us look forward to the patches of sun. It was the best day for a long ride ever; cloudless, sunny, but cold like ski-sun, keeping you moving. I still stopped, a lot, and grew fairly useless and delirious. My whole body was trying to push that impossible gear, and it just wasn't sustainable for long periods of time. That's about when we saw something a little like this:

And the going got pretty damn slow. My magic phone map stopped getting service, so we just kind of... pedaled. Every 200 yards I would stop, and every mile or so I'd stop and take a nap, it seemed. Lindsey of course was bored as hell, because she's a badass and could have cheerily continued along at that pace for the rest of the weekend. I was dying, but eventually...

We made it! But I really, really don't suggest it more than once. Gears are great, people, I promise. All told, it took us from 9 am to 5:30 pm to go about 30 miles. But it was fun. I didn't have an ounce of energy left, and after the race course down the other side of the loop and dinner with my Dad in Sundance I crashed out at 8:00 for about 12 hours.


Anonymous said...

you are one bad ass davey. :) thanks for making slackers like me look bad.

~kitticus~ said...

Thank you Pinky for sporting the Pussycat spoke card while on this monumental adventure! You're rad. :)

Davey, are one crazy dude. I <3 you even more for it! Cheers and applause all around!