To quote Phil Rizzuto to describe today’s ride HOLY COW! WE started the day in Idaho Falls,with a very early start.
We headed up the Snake River-still following that river-towards Jackson, Wyoming. A couple of notables on today’s ride, new state-Wyoming, and we passed 1,000 miles since leaving Astoria, Oregon. Another gorgeous day, temperature at the start-6:30 AM-was 50 degrees, but warmed to the high 60’s, and, as the photos show, a perfect blue sky, a light tail wind.
To those who bike, riding through a pass in the Rockies is monumental, they are unlike anything else on this continent. Today we did 2, the first one was relatively easy, we climbed from 5,300 feet to 6,764 feet, but at a gradual incline. Followed by a 2 mile downhill. Then came TETON PASS. Not only is it a long climb, it is STEEP! You climb from 5,820 feet to 8,431 feet in about 12 miles, but the last 2.5 to 3 miles are all 10% grade or steeper. Earlier in this journey I had written about my love for climbing because of finding a zone, and staying in it, there was NO zone to be found today, this was hard work! A part of my brain kept saying, you can’t do this, it is too difficult, so walk-as some did, but most of my brain had 2 things to say. The first was what one of my spin instructors always said, ” You want to quit, You can’t quit, You dig deeper, You DON’T quit”. The other was that I looked forward to this climb for 20 years, there was NO Way I could walk up this climb. And I didn’t! The feeling of accomplishment when I saw the top, and then reached the top is hard to describe, but at that moment, euphoria, and the feeling that I could do anything with enough work and focus mixed in my brain. It FELT GREAT! And, naturally, what went up, Me, now had a 6 mile, fairly technical descent ( looks of turns and switchbacks) down into Jackson. Wow, what a ride.
Tomorrow we go even higher as we cross the continental divide, can’t wait.