An article by the Professor
Even after musing about how difficult it is to ride in the snow, I have entered this race in the 60K category. As I am new to fat bikes this season, this will be a new experience for me. However, I am not new to endurance type races. I come from a trail running background. In the past 12 years or so I have run about 15 or 16 marathon or longer races. Actually I have only run two marathons on the road, and that was enough. I run almost exclusively on trails and seem to like the 50K distance best, though I have run the Squaw Peak 50 Mile Trail Run twice. So, I guess I know a little about endurance and suffering and being out on a trail for a long time. I have ridden some of the roads where the race will be held in Island Park, ID, but that was on a road bike in the summer, and I’ve also done some cross country skiing and snowshoeing up there. The scenery is pretty spectacular and I’m really looking forward to it. I have a friend that lives about an hour from the start/finish, so I even have a place to stay. I have yet to convince my brothers to join me on this ride. They are both registered to ride True Grit (50 mile race in the Southern Utah desert) exactly two weeks after this race. They are trying to get me to race with them, and I am trying to convince them to do the snow race. Maybe I’ll do both. We’ll have to see how the training goes in the coming weeks.
The trails around here are getting better and better as they get more packed out. On the 26th, my brothers and I road up the Alpine Loop from the Sundance side and the conditions were fantastic—well packed out, smooth, and fast. In fact, we clocked a surprising 27 mph on the way down. Sounds pretty scary, but the snow was really good, even grippy, a bit like styrofoam. It was by far the best snow ride of the season. We rode up to the Summit, then down the Cascade Springs Road about a mile, then back up and down. Only about 11.5 miles, but we all felt strong. Heading out again tomorrow for a longer ride.