DALMAC Day 2 – the 85 mile uphill grind

I’m recovering from my legs going round and round for 5 days.  My hips and shoulders are adjusting back to my nice soft bed after sleeping on the ground for 5 nights.  It was day 2 on the DALMAC ride that made a tour rider out of me.  I set my personal distance record on this day of 86 miles.  As commentary, I have no immediate desire to surpass that achievement at this point.

Day Two Start

Day two on Thursday August 30, 2012 started with a heavy dew and an early rise with the sun around 5:45am.  My body ached from the previous day’s ride but more from the night on the ground.  I was optimistic about the challenge of the high mileage day and we prepared by packing the tent up and grabbing some eggs, sausage and coffee from the breakfast line.  We didn’t know the terrain of the day but expected some hills since the first day had been so flat.

GARMIN elevation gain for day 2 – DALMAC 2012

Day Two Garmin View

The day turned out to be a long upward grind.  There were some nice rolling roads and when things go up they tend to come down so we had some fun downhills like I’ve never experienced before.  Around mile 58-59 we had a downhill that I got rolling to 41 miles per hour.  It was an amazing experience to be gliding down a winding hill passing all my friends.  Little did I realize how dangerous the activity was and the list of little things that could go wrong and cause me to be life flighted out of the area.  It was still awesome and I would do it again.

Around mile 58-59 we had a downhill that I got rolling to 41 miles per hour. 

Day 2 Lessons

My lesson for the day came after I had rolled into Lake City our camp for the night.  We were at the Thanksgiving for finishing the damn day dinner (really good turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and gravy).  This dad was there with his daughters who looked to be about 12 years old.  These girls were in biking jerseys and look like they biked that day.  Roberta asked the dad and sure enough the three of them rode the 86 miles together.

Ok, I’ll admit around mile 75 I was crying under my sun glasses.  I wanted it to be over, I wanted there to be no more hills and I wanted to be sleeping in a bed and not a sleeping mat in a tent.  Then I meet David and his two girls Alex and Sam who together rode 86 miles and didn’t appear to have any tears streaked on their cheeks.  The picture shows their tandem with a hitch hiker attachment that allows the three to pedal as one.

Then I meet David and his two girls Alex and Sam who together rode 86 miles and didn’t appear to have any tears streaked on their cheeks.  The picture shows their tandem with a hitch-hiker attachment that allows the three to pedal as one.

Day two riding DALMAC taught me these things:

1.  I can do it.

2.  I need a “why” to achieve a goal *and* to be proud of it.

3.  Girl Power is alive and was riding in DALMAC with Sam and Alex.

4.  Riding (or coasting down a hill) into the wind as fast as a car is AWESOME.

5.  Even a sleeping pad feels really good after a lot of miles on a bike.

Day two:  August 30, 2012
Mileage:  86
Starting point – Sheppard MI
Destination – Lake City, MI

Never think your kids are too young to be at your side.  The lessons that David shared with his daughters on this trip will span a lifetime as will their memories.  They inspired me the rest of the trip and we talked each day the rest of the ride.

Pedal On, Coast Fast (whenever possible) –
Michelle