Sunday, January 27, 2008

Death Ride Memories

That is Terry and I topping out on Carson Pass last summer. The fifth pass always seems to drag on and on. I had caught up to a small group that she was riding with on the way up to Picketts junction. I was feeling pretty knackered at that point but when I saw her I got all fired up. I rode through the group and Terry followed my wheel out and up to Picketts. After sitting and drinking coke and eating potato chips at the feed zone for a while we started out again.
It was really windy going across hope valley. Feeling strong, I sat on the front and pulled. Terry echeloned off to my side out of the wind.
We stopped at the Blue Lakes road turn off. The Chickenhawk was there with the kids. Adam was there banging the hell out a aluminum pot with a wooden spoon. Jennifer was there taking pictures. That's where my profile shot came from. A bunch of the Veloloco families were there cheering. We just stopped for a minute and then went back to the climb.
From there, the road turns upwards for the final couple of miles to the top of Carson Pass. After about a half mile I cracked. It was the typical trip into the dark tunnel vision cave. My speed dropped in half and just wanted to get off my bike. "I'm loosing it Terry."
"No your not." said Terry. She comes around me and starts to pull. I focused on her back tire and we went slowly, ever so slowly up to the top of the pass. She could have easily ridden away from me at that point but she sat in a led me up that last climb. Finishing the Death Ride is always a mind over matter sort of thing for a puddin' like me. Getting to the top with Terry was a peak experience. When that picture was shot, we were both completely stoked.
Terry called the photo people and tracked that shot down recently. It was no small effort. Last night they came over for fish tacos and chatting. She brought the picture and the chickenhawk scanned it. Terry's story is hers to tell. All I can says is that in light of recent events in our lives, that photo is particularly poignant. Next Death Ride that I do, I sincerely hope to ride it with my friend Terry.

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