I had great aspirations for the weekend. The forecast was pretty good for Friday and great for Saturday- True Grit race day. Carson and I took off Friday early in the hopes of pre-riding the course. We got down to St G and the rain was nasty. We figured we’d wait it out. Nope. It kept raining. We could have waited till evening to leave from SLC. At least the forecast was 10% chance for rain Saturday and a high of 66.
Saturday we got up to a lot of clouds but the forecast was the same. As we were shivering at the start the promoter announced how lucky we were to have a cooler forecast for the day since “normally” it would be 75 F.
We got off to a nice steady start. I was feeling really good and still gradually passing people as we hit the race course loop. At the top of the loop it started to sprinkle. No worries the forecast said it would be clear. I finished the first loop feeling strong
and not even winded. I kept wanting to open it up more but consciously held back waiting, conserving power for a big push at the end once the sun came out and started to beam down on me. I got through the first aid station and started to climb Zen still feeling strong and light hearted. But the rain started to come down harder. I was worried that Bear Claw Poppy and Stucki would be getting really muddy. Then the little rivers started forming down the trail. This would be interesting. That’s OK I was still feeling strong and the cooler temperatures would keep me from getting too hot.
Then, I was on the last switch back near the top of Zen and my foot slipped out of the pedals- so I thought. I looked down and the pedal spindle was there but not spring! The damn eggbeaters broke! I wasted about 10 minutes trying to fix them. I got them back on but had lost hope that they would last long. Yup. 5 minutes later they really broke. I coasted down Zen thinking I could go back to the condo and put on a new pedal, dry off and at least finish the race. It was raining harder. I got down to the aid station and found out due to the wet conditions that Bear Claw Poppy was omitted from the race due to the wet conditions. Noah was at the station and happened to have a pedal for me which we switched out but my heart wasn’t in it anymore- especially since I was pretty cold by then. It was still raining-harder. The only thing keeping me considering to keep going was knowing Carson was ahead. If he could do it I had to as well. Then as I was thinking that miraculously I heard his name- from above? I looked back and there he was walking his bike and shivering like Jello. He had double flatted at the top of Zen and had walked down the whole damn hill. He was done. Me too.
Luckily the condo was within a mile of that aid station and we got back dried off and changed. It was still raining. We were becoming worried about the rest of the racers. We packed up all our warm clothes and headed for the Barrel Roll Aid station to see how the racers were doing. On the ride up it didn’t look good. There were soaked racers heading back on the road- obviously bailed on the race. We got to the trailhead and found many shivering hypothermic racers including KC, Chad and Brady among them. They did not look good. We threw them into the overly heated car-mud and all. Oh what a mess Carson’s car ended up being by the end of that rescue. As we were heading back there were two ambulances and a rescue truck heading up.
Chris incredibly made it back right behind Alex Grant to take second but he was in dire straights. He made it in just as we heard that the race was called. We packed him up in his car and called it a day. We figured we’d stay until the next day to try and get in a ride- attempting to salvage the weekend.
We heard the church rock and Prospector might be the driest so we packed up and headed out in the morning with the Sun out, warming the air and our spirits. We got to the northern end of Prospector rode a half mile and were buried in mud. It was not going to happen. We went back tried a couple other options and got buried even more. The weekend was a muddy flop.