They say you shouldn’t fool with mother nature but that doesn’t stop her from fooling with you sometimes as 9 riders found out on this ride. The forecast was for a warm day with light winds out of the northeast at 5-10 mph. That would have been great if it were true but it was meant not to be. Even with a pre-dawn start the winds were already brisk out of the north at 20 – 25 mph and temps were in the upper 50’s and low 60’s. Riders fought these headwinds for 90 miles or so to Cedar City before the course changed direction and offered any relief. Even then relief came in the form of a cross wind and it wasn’t until about mile 120 or so that it really turned into a tailwind. That’s when the grimaces finally turned into smiles and the pace picked up quite a bit.
To add just a little bit to the challenge, a couple of riders had several flats and exhausted their supply of inner tubes. Luckily some spares were purchased at the bike shop in Cedar City and as usual once there were plenty of tubes available again there were few flats.
After a great downhill run into Newcastle the riders fueled up at the checkpoint. The next section was an easy 12 mile spin to the town of Enterprise. The last real climb of the day began shortly after that and it was quite a challenge coming at a point this late into the ride. Once at the top however the riders enjoyed perhaps the best downhill run of the day. This was a 13 mile section of downhill and rollers all the way to the next checkpoint in Veyo. Even after Veyo the fun continued with more downhill and rollers through Gunlock and finally ending on the outskirts of St. George. All that was left was to navigate through town and back to the finish. Most riders made it in just about dark and we had a 100 percent completion rate. Riders loved the scenery along the course and the roads were mostly good. Congratulations to all 9 riders who started and finished this event!