Day 13, The First Big Climb #TransAmRide4TBI 7/21/17

We got up early to get on the road, but not before I discovered another broken spoke. This was getting ridiculous, and I made decision to but a new wheel next bike shop we came to. There were several in Steamboat Springs, about 60mi away, and right along our route. Best thing was we could start riding early and shop would be open when we got there. So off we went. 

It was a nice uneventful ride, with beautiful scenery throughout the morning. We were making good time, taking regular little breaks, and feeling great. The miles just flew by. 

In steamboat we went to several bike shops, which didn’t have a wheel for me, and each referred me to another. Finally, the last referral sent us to Orange Peel. Guys there had several options for me. After making a decision they went to work, and Jr and I went to lunch. By time we were done eating, my bike was ready to go. They have me a great price, better than we had agreed on, and made a couple of adjustments for me. Hooked me up since I was riding for a good cause, and they’re great guys. 

Leaving Steamboat Springs many it was time to go to work. The next 30 miles we would start gaining big elevation. The road stayed a very gradual climb through Winter Park, but shortly thereafter it got nasty. 

The few first few miles were very steep. The spokes on my new wheel were pinging  like crazy, but they were holding. Jr and I dug  deep. I slowly pulled away from him, finding my own rhythm. I made one brief stop for pics, but after that all my focus was on climbing. Without the trailer it would have been challenging, but that extra 50lbs was putting the hurt on. Finally though, around 9400ft, I reached the top and waited a few minutes for Jr.

Shortly after wee started the descent the rain started. We were quickly soaked and cold, but had another 35 miles to go. It was miserable but beautiful at the same time. Going was slow because the road became very slippery. 

We finally reached our goal town. We had decided to get a hotel, but everything was full. So after getting some food from the grocery store we rolled out of town looking for a place to camp. 

Unfortunately the mosquitoes were out in force. I’ve never experienced anything like it. Years ago I spent 10 days in the Amazon Rain forest in Peru, and the mosquitoes there were fierce, but I think these were worse. Every time we stopped we would be covered in them in seconds. It was so bad we couldn’t see. They’d be in our eyes, nose, mouth. It was unbelievable. 

We ended up riding well after dark before finally finding a place. It wasn’t ideal, but we were finally off the road. Tents were quickly set up and we went to sleep just as the rain hit for the third night in a row. 

Around 1am I heard a train approaching and woke up. I noticed my tent was getting brighter and brighter. Sounded and looked like the train was coming right at me. As it roared past the tent shook like it was being hit by a storm. Turns out there were train tracks about 10yds away. Jr had seen them, and we were a safe distance away, but quite a shick for me. Took a while to fall back asleep. 

#TransAmRide4TBI 3600mi for #TraumaticBrainInjury #TBI please help them and make a donation


About Douglas Sawyer, MS, ATC

I am an athletic trainer who is also a very avid athlete. My first love is running, but I also love cycling and triathlons and many other activities. I'm not a swimmer though, I just don't drown for 2.4 miles... As a athletic trainer I work with sports injuries. I currently work at a school with athletes in 7th-12th grade in a wide variety of sports. I can be found on twitter at two different names: @IronmanLongRunr - where I tweet about run, bike, tri, & more @Longrunr - where I tweet about athletic training
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2 Responses to Day 13, The First Big Climb #TransAmRide4TBI 7/21/17

  1. Glad you weren’t on the tracks!

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