After pre-riding the northern section of the Crazy 88 two weeks ago, I was curious to see what I would be getting myself into over the course of the second half of the day. It seemed like the northern half was all climbing....so with this in mind, I rolled the southern portion yesterday under blue skies, glorious temps and very tacky trails. It had rained 2 days before, but the trails were all in great shape, still moist and very velcro like......I don't think I ever felt my tires give the entire 53 some odd miles. At 4535 ft elevation gained on the day, it felt very manageable to do in conjunction with the northern half of the 88 which I rolled two weeks ago........
The 1st hour or so was nothing but one long descent with a few hills in between....
This descent will be most welcome after rolling into Schultz Pass halfway through the course on race day (I'll call it participation day). The AZ trail section in and around Walnut was not half bad either....2 or 3 really tight switchbacks littered with babyheads aside......most of the drops were rollable with nice slots.
The only concern of mine is the mud factor should rain be an issue as it was last year. Even after 2 days of drying conditions...my tires were picking up some serious, but manageable mud NE of Walnut Canyon. I suspect that if it is raining on participation day...some of these sections will become a slogfest.
In any event, I have less than a week before the 88; so I'll be resting, spinning some light miles, doing plenty of stretching and yoga....and loading up on carbs and water a few days out. This will be the first time doing anything like this....but I feel that I've done all that I can with respect to prepping my knee for the miles and dialing in my nutrition and hydration for the day. Hopefully I will have a post next week detailing success...which for me is avoiding the big, fat "DNF"....which means I'll be ok with a "DFL". You can track my progress starting 0700 AZT on Saturday by clicking on the link here or following the SPOT hotlink at the top of the menu on the left.....wish my knee luck!
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