Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Sunday we went on a tour of long 12-percent grades in Eastern Sonoma County. This wasn't our intention when we started, but we were tagging along with a Team Swift teammate and his dad, who live in Petaluma, and I neglected to look closely at the map before we took off. We went over Sonoma Mountain twice (once each way) and then started up Trinity Grade, before we came to our senses. About a mile and a half up Trinity, Joey--who was leading the group--rounded a turn and saw that it was going to continue at 12 percent or so for awhile (see the photo above--last year's Tour of California on the same climb), said to himself "this is stupid," and turned around.

This would have been a great hard training ride in the middle of the season, but when we've barely got any miles in our legs and are just riding once a week or so? Nada. When I went back and looked at my Sonoma County bike map, I counted seven 3-arrow climbs on our 40-mile loop. Climbing is one thing, blowing out your knees when you're just supposed to be riding base miles is another. Fortunately we didn't hurt ourselves, but the moral of the story is: Always check your map.

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