I am back home.
I am very pleased with how Race Across Oregon went for me. At age 62, I was the oldest solo participant there. I finished in 59 hours, 40 min, 20 minutes before the cut-off time.
Given my schedule leading up to the race, I was certainly NOT well-rested and struggled with the need sleep the first night. I got through it, but was forced to take 3x 15-20 min naps. The second night went a bit better and I managed on 2x 15 min naps.
The weather was warm, up to 37C during the day. The first night temperatures dropped to 6C. Both extremes.
I thank George Thomas, the Race Director for allowing me to start 10 hours late. It felt a bit weird to be that far back, but I managed to mostly remain positive. My nephew Juergen and his friend Dave (now my friend as well) from Abbotsford did a great job looking after me. Thank you.
RAO has 48,000 ft of climbing. That equates to 800 ft/hour (on average) for the max allowed time. Race Across America (RAAM) has 170,000 ft or 490 ft/hour on average of climbing for the max allowed time of 12 days.
It felt like I was climbing 80% of the time, going downhill about 10% of the time and normal riding about 10% of time. The biggest challenge for me was the lack of recovery time between climbs.
The scenery was simply incredible. It is very remote and my support vehicle was down to the last few litres of fuel in the extra jerry can due to arriving at the few populated towns in the late evening because of my delayed start.
It ALL turned out great.
RATTLESNAKE and PORCUPINE encounters:
At one of the long climbs struggling at about 8km/hour at night, I saw a 3-4 ft stick on the road. Or so I thought. As I was within 3-5. ft, it recoiled, and went up into a striking position. In a split second I managed to change direction. It did NOT strike. It became roadkill from the follow vehicle. Shortly after, I just managed to avoid hitting a porcupine that was meandering down the yellow centre line. These two incidents were certainly helpful in staying awake.
Now it is back to the task at hand on Henderson Highway. I still have 3,828 km to go.
A slight problem. I have NO bike.
My two bikes are enroute home (in the rental van) to arrive Saturday. My spare third bike was discovered to have a crack in the frame. Bikes and Beyond and Giant are trying to accommodate my needs. Not sure when I can resume. I do NOT have a lot of flexibility left in my schedule to be done by Aug. 8 at 6:30 pm.
In the meantime, I will just take a nap.
Thanks for your ongoing interest.
Race Across Oregon wrap-up report
I am back home.