Welcome to Ogden

I got into Odgen last night to see a huge thunderstorm hanging over Snowbasin and drenching the mountain. If I'd had my camera and been able to take a picture, I would have gotten a great photo of a rainbow over the mountain. I was planning on running a little yesterday, but with checking in, getting food and my achilles still tender, I decided to chill out in the hotel. It's a little extended stay studio with a stove, microwave and fridge. Of course, the first thing that I did after getting unpacked was going to the food store and wandering. It's always an adventure going to the grocery stores in different cities. This one had a mix of everything, so I walked out with enough food for the weekend (and beyond - since I had to get a dozen eggs, not six).

I'm already a leg up on where I was last year at this time. Last year I had to take my last class for my DPT - in Denver, on the Friday before the race. I got into Ogden at 9:30 the night before the race and never had a chance to pre ride. This year, I've already ridden most of the course once and am planning on hitting the top loop again tommorow so I am very familliar with the down hill. I was pretty lucky today - met a good group of people to ride with so I wasn't out there alone. It also made sure that I was riding comfortably - they were all from sea level and had the heart rate monitors beeping to prevent them from riding hard!

I did the bottom section of single track - a gradual climb winding through meadows and trees and with plenty of bridge crossings. The trail was a little muddy in places thanks to the rain storm, but by Saturday it will be tight and fast - as long as I can avoid the cow patties! Had no issues with the first section - felt really good riding. Then the right hand turn to drop back down across the road. I blew one switchback, forgetting how sharp it was, but cleaned everything else. Even the steps that freaked me out last year. Just rode right over them, weight back and sighting the trail. There was another section of trail that I did not clean last year, but made through it easily. After that, we reached the Snowbasion Lodge and the trail turned up.

Because of racer feedback, the course was changed this year. The new course eliminated the criss-crossing issues from last year. We rode up the ugly steep hill and turned left this year. It dropped us onto single track for a false flat descent through the trees and rocks, then another gradual climb on single track. Nothing super technical, but loose and rocky - small rocks that bounced my tires around quite a bit. Finally, the course topped out and we got to start heading down for good. The local mountain bike crew had build a new section of single track that eliminated a double track descent and it was worth every minute of climbing. Fast, tight switchbacks (missed another right-hander on that section) sweeping banked corners and plenty of rocks and roots to keep it interesting. Back out onto the road for a short bit, then onto the single track again. I felt really good riding, comfortable on the bike. I love that last section of single track - switchbacks traversing the ski slopes, in and out of trees. I'm looking forward to riding it again tommorow.


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