Friday, March 11, 2011

New climb

The "10 mph Turn" sign always marks a good climb.
Bill and I took a ride today. We climbed the hill from Valley Chapel up to Mt Hope. If you are a roadie rider, then you no doubt have climbed this many a time. But for chumps like me, this was a first. It was a nice climb and I look forward to climbing it more in the future. It's a perfect hill in its commitment to a consistent grade.

The hill is also way closer than I thought. In my mind, this climb was like 30 miles out or something, but in reality it's around 12 or so. As a bonus, I think I may be on the cusp of a game-changer in the climbing-technique-department. Bill suggested that I put my weight back a bit when I stand on climbs. Right away, stuff happened: mainly, less weight was on my hands/wrists (duh) and also, there was some weirdo efficiency thing going on as I put more weight directly over my pedals.

Whatever. This kind of nit-picky theory is not my deal, but some little thing happened there that will fun to experiment with over the next few months.

After the climb up to Mt Hope (that's what I'm calling it -- if there's a proper name for that area, feel free to educate me), the famous Palouse wind kicked in. Blech. I hate the famous Palouse wind.

Pictures cannot do justice to lame Palouse rollers + wind.
So we did rollers for about 10 miles into a wind that was about 40 mph... well, maybe it was like 15 mph. But whatever. That part sucked.

Otherwise, the ride was good. We took a chunk of the midnight century route out of Spangle -- on Jennings road, which is in way nicer shape (even a tad wet) than it is in August when it's washboarded and gravely.
Jennings Road.


Anonymous said...

The wind literally blew me over on the upper corner last summer, on the windiest day of last year. I was loaded for touring and gear went flying everywhere.

I'm serious, the wind blew me flat on my side.

My sleeping pad sailed over the guard rail down the hill and I had to retrieve it--twice.

Maybe I didn't have my weight far enough back...

Geoff said...

It is known as Duncan Grade by the folks in that area. Maybe someone named Duncan did not put his weight back far enough on his horse when going-up and suffered a terrible fate.

PS. The climb does not officially end until the 2nd Sands Road.