I just registered for “The Hills Are Alive” 300km brevet held on this coming Saturday (April 21st) with a 6:30am start down in Victoria. This means another sleep in “Chez Mazda” and another after the ride is finished as I don’t think I’ll be able to make it back for the last ferry to Denman.
After hearing other randonneurs talking about the upcoming brevet after the Tour de Cowichan Valley, I’m giving this ride the respect that it deserves. It sounds like there is going to be a lot of climbing and it will be interesting to see what the actual elevation gain is. It’s at 2410 meters right now and I’ll report what my computer says when I’m done. The last ride had an extra 900 meters or so added on. Did I mention that the course goes over the Malahat twice? Let’s not forget the few other knee breakers thrown in for good measure.
In all honesty, I’m kind of nervous about this upcoming ride. I don’t think I’ve ever done 300 kms in one go before, so I’m sure there is going to be a certain amount of suffering involved. On longer rides there are elements that you can’t really plan or train for and just have to roll with it as it unfolds. That’s the exciting part for me. The bike is running smoothly and I have about 2700kms in my legs since the beginning of January, so I should be OK. On every brevet I’ve ridden I’ve learned something new either about me or my gear. Last brevet I was having trouble on the steep hills, while the gradual ones were fine. This tells me that I have to ride more hills and is one of the major motivators for doing this ride. I’m also going to try and eat more throughout the ride. I’ve had a couple of people tell me that I need to keep something a little extra for the last 50kms, so I plan on taking my time and not worry about the end time too much. Although I’ve done some riding at night with the new bike, this will be the first time on new roads in the dark. I’m going to have to ad a helmet light to read the cue sheet and see street signs after the darkness sets in. I really like riding in the dark so I am looking forward to this aspect of the ride.