Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Stagecoach 400: Day 2

TDR bike,  all ready for a run thru the desert down to the sea.......... 
By the end of day 1, around 9:30pm I was slightly dehydrated and running on adrenalin instead of re-supply calories.  The legs were still good and as the temps had cooled off I was still slowly riding along in the deep sand.  But it was time to change strategies.  Having worked my way into the same situation many times in the past I knew if I camped up, laid down and slept for an hour or two my appetite would return.  However if I continued I would eventually reach a point of no return.
I walked 90 deg away from the road for about 200 yards and camped up.  I had my full TDR kit—tent (ZPacks™Hexamid Solo Tent ), pad and bag, so once set up I was resting in the lap of luxury from a multi-day point of view.   I placed a full 32oz water bottle and my half eaten dinner next to my head, laid back and stared at the moon and stars.  I woke at 12:30 hungry and thirsty.  Ate and drank and watched some bugs in the bright moon light trying in vain to find their way into my netted tent.  Ha take that nasty desert bugs……

I re-woke at 1:00am feeling ready to go.  My alarm was set for 3am and I finaly gave in and got up at 2am. My plan called for me to deliberately bypass the still closed store at Agua Caliente Springs and reach the RV park store at Oakzanita Springs before 4pm close time.  Now Oakzanita Springs was only about 50 to 60 miles away so you would think this was a reasonable resupply plan.  And I still had plenty of calories, just ones that were not particular appealing to my fickle stomach.  Also there were several places on route for water . So off I went into the night, hanging on to my hopes for a better day.
Needleless to say-- I crashed and burned as soon at the real climbing started and the sun came out.  In short I really should have waited till the store at Agua Caliente opened and ate & drank till the ol body was truly re-fueled.   I met several racers along the way, they were all passing me as I continued my decent into bonkdom.  By 4pm I was still a few miles from the RV store at Oakzanita Springs.  Most of the day I kept my smile but by 4pm if someone in a pickup truck had stopped to chat I would have gladly offered them $100 to haul my sorry butt back to my van in Idyllwild.  (also I was so preoccupied with my suffering I did not take any pictures on day 2-- so any here are from day 1 or 3)
Group at Borrego Springs
I skipped the burritos--in hind site this was a mistake 
Once I reached the now closed RV store I went looking for someone to possibly open it up and sell me something cold to drink.  No luck with that but “hallelujah” I was offered a tall ice filled glass of strawberry soda by a picnicking couple out for an evening day hike.   And then my luck fully turned 180 deg when fellow SC 400 racer Tyrel Beede pulled up.  Misery does love company and the two us were sharing plenty.  Together we made a plan to share our mutual woes all the way onto the Mexican restaurant at Descanso.  Soon we were stuffed on great Mexican food and all was again right with the world.  Smile fully back!  All that really matters is some good resupply……….

Ty & I both got hotel rooms that night in Alpine.  As soon as I checked in I walked over to the Carl Jr’s and got a second dinner with extra milk shake and drink---did I mention-- all that really matters is some good resupply……….

Ty was great company and his positive, laid back attitude really lifted me back up to the point of enjoying myself despite my many self-induced, minor setbacks.

Day 1: 103 miles in 15 hours
Day 2: 70 miles in 17 hours

Day 3 up next--(the joy of multi-day returns full force)
ahh--down to the cool 'cool' ocean on day 3..........

PS: I am embarrassed to point this out but the whole time I was suffering on day 2 I had a large but forgotten packet of drink mix stuffed away in the bottom of my bags.  Had I remembered it and used it strategically I might have been able to reach he RV store before the close at 4pm.  That would have totally revamped my race going forward. oh well.........

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