Sunday, July 27, 2008

Santa Cruz Mountains Challenge

He: Time to wake up!
Me: It's 4:15am. I'm firing you as my boyfriend.
He: Okay but would you make me a cup of coffee first?
Me: For that Mister, I'm going to subject you to my music on the way to the event.

We arrived at the school in Scotts Valley in darkness. The Santa Cruz Mountains Challenge registration volunteers were still setting up! I went back to bed in The Boyfriend's car. The 100K route involved 7400 feet of climbing including Mt. Charlie (photo above), Jamison Creek, Skyline etc. and lots of fabulous descents (I clocked in at 34 mph on some). We started off at 6:30am with Mt. Charlie.

He: I'll stay with you for this climb.
Me: Really? Mumble mumble.
He: What's that you said?
Me: That's sweet of you. I won't fire you as my boyfriend.

The BF left me on Skyline. He planned to do the 100 mile. Oh lookey, there he is fixing a flat.
Yoo hoo, you know Mister, if we had slept in, chances are .... We rode to the rest stop together at Skyline and Hwy 9 and then we parted ways. Already, the day was becoming increasingly hot.

Above, somewhere in the woods as I climbed occasionally with others but mostly alone. There was a woman who I chatted with briefly and who has done the Death Ride (a lot of cyclists wore their Death Ride jerseys) and I believe that she is in her 70s. What an inspiration.

I can't remember where I was when I took the photo above. The climbs were definitely challenging and exhilarating. I must confess that I walked most of the last mile of Jamison Creek.

The last part of the ride involved Mt. Hermon (pictured above). 6 hours later I returned to the school, a sweaty but happy mess. The Boyfriend was waiting for me. He chose to shorten his route due to mechanical problems, the heat, and the time he spent being an escort for me in the beginning. What a man. We'll be back next year and I will do all of Jamison Creek. Thanks to the volunteers for a super ride.

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