Friday, September 3, 2010

Ronde PDX

Aj and I had another opportunity to get out and ride on Thursday afternoon after he was finished with class. We decided to give part of the Ronde PDX route a try before we got lost and ended up finding some pretty good climbs. The climbs here are long and grueling compared to the short and steep climbs back home. However, today we found something both short (about 1/2 mile long) and steeper than any road I have ever been on featuring a 23% grade.

The route started off by taking us up Saltzman Rd., a climb that took us approximately 25 minutes before we reached the top. Lungs and legs were feeling good until we found our first "lion." It's one thing to be sitting in granny gear and making your way up a hill, but standing, cranking and grueling through granny gear is another. It was one of those hills where your lungs feel like they are going to pop right out of your mouth and every one of your leg muscles are going to burn from the inside out. The ride up Byrnside Rd. started with a lady driving down the road from her house and stopping to ask us if we were planning on riding our bikes up the drive. She advised us that she won't even walk up the hill, let alone give thought about biking up it, and wished us well. Not exactly motivation before a big climb! So it goes...

Admittedly, Aj and I didn't make it to the top without walking the first time. I stopped and walked to the top, which was hard enough. Aj turned back around and took another run at it before meeting me at the top. I decided I couldn't let my pride suffer without conquering this beast, even if I was still gasping for air after walking up it. I rode the bike back down, put my head down and tired not to think about the terrible burning in my legs. Conquering that epic of a hill was a good feeling. We continued on with our ride, adding another 25 miles or so, and Aj put it best by saying that, "we defeated the lion, but it left some scars on its slayers."

1 comment:

Matt Meskill said...

You guys need to do the whole ride sometime. I've talked to Pros who say it's a killer. I did it yesterday with beautiful weather.

PS: It's BrynWOOD. I think you're confusing it with Burnside.