August 7, 2005
Hi from the Canadian wilderness and the TransRockies Challenge.
For those who do not know what this event is, it's a seven day long MTB stage race held in BC and Alberta. There is lots of climbing, some very juicy singletrack, bears, and occasionally sleet and snow. The complete, official and very accurate description is on www.Transrockies.com and I'll leave it to them to fill in the rest of the gory details.
The novelty of this event and events like it is that it is open to pros and amateurs. If you have ever wondered what it feels like to race hard, day after day in some very beautiful and often severe terrain, this is the way to do it. Then, if you are successful, or insane, you can do it again and again, in Europe (Transalp), South Africa (Cape Epic) or a shorter but no less severe version in Costa Rica (La Ruta de los Conquistadors).
As you probably guessed, the reports will be written from the perspective of an amateur. I'll be the first to warn you that this is not going to be as dramatic as the diaries that the pros submit to Cyclingnews. I'll also warn you that I have never tried to do this sort of thing after very long stages in the heat. It is not certain that I am going to be very well connected with anything resembling wit, or intellect, the English language, or my fingers for that matter, so this may get even more spotty than normal as the week progresses.