Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Mt Lemmon

"Welcome to the Santa Catalina Mountains, one of southern Arizona's "sky islands", where pine covered mountains rise high above the desert floor. The trip up the Catalina Highway can be compared to a trip from Mexico to Canada, with vegetation ranging from the giant Saguaro cactus in the lowland deserts to pine, fir, and spruce at the highest elevations."

2.5 hr w. 4 X (12' Big Gear, 5' ez)
Wow...what a ride! We spun over from our place to the base of Mt Lemmon. Mt Lemmon is a 25 mile long climb that ranges in elevation from roughly 3000ft at the base to 7900 ft at the top.
The BG work was supposed to be seated, with low cadence, working the glutes, hamstrings, pushing and pulling up the hill. We had the animals up front (Simon, Kyle, Jordan, James) and then others strung out behind as we climbed. Adam wanted me to keep my HR below 160 as I climbed, so that is what I was focusing on for the workout today. I climbed in basically a 53X21 gearing for the big gears, with my heart rate in the upper 150's. I started out a bit tentative as I have had a bit of right knee pain in the last day, so I didn't want to push to hard right away on the knee.
I had the I-Pod going, and settled in to climb for the next 65 min. It was amazing to see the changes as you climb. There are both mile marker and elevation signs along the road as you climb. Once we were above 5000ft, you could see snow on the sides of the road in the shade. On and on the climb went, and I went through 10 miles in 55', and 12 miles in 65'. I caught up to Nick by the end, and we had climbed to just past the 13 mile mark when we saw the support van and picked up our warm clothing for the descent back to town. Simon's group climbed to 14 miles, before turning back for the descent.
The interesting thing about today's climb was that we basically went to half-way up the entire climb today. Should be a good ride next week when we climb the entire thing all the way to the top.

The coaches had the camera in the support van, I'll post some pics once I get the camera back.

There is a run scheduled for later today, however I'm going to skip the run today, and give my right knee a rest, ice it down, and do some stretching on it. Also, a grocery run is scheduled for later tonite.

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