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  1. #1
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    Moab Century Tour 2007 Trip Report

    The 2007 Moab Century was an epic. Michele, Greg and I started
    about 7:45 in rain. I always ride at my own pace so Greg and I were
    leap-frogging most of the day and Michele was a ways back. When we
    started the climbing at about 20 miles it started raining harder and soon
    turned into snow and finally blizzard conditions where we topped out at
    8700 feet after some steep, nasty climbing. They closed that
    section of the course a few minutes after Greg and I started down
    because too many people were getting in trouble with the cold.

    The descent was one of the most miserable experiences of my life. You
    wanted to go fast to get down quickly, but because of the conditions and
    the fact that we were bordering on hypothermia and frostbite we had to
    go slowly. My gloves were soaked, my fingers were frozen solid, and at
    times I was shaking uncontrollably. We had to stop every couple of
    minutes because our hands would get too cold to use the brakes effectively.
    Some people just started walking and we even saw people huddling together in
    the ditch just trying to stay out of the wind. Eventually several
    hundred people (including Michele) had to be rescued and driven back to
    town due to cold related issues. The group organizers were calling all the
    outfitters in town to get buses, vans, personal vehicles, and whatever else
    they could get to haul people back to town.

    Greg and I made it down to a lower aid station where they had started a
    fire, but unfortunately there were so many people that it was impossible
    to get close to the fire for long. I did manage to thaw my fingers out
    some and it was painful as hell. After getting what warmth we could
    from the fire we headed back down to the river and by the time we got
    there the rain had stopped and the weather was clearing so we decided to
    carry on with the ride rather than start back to town. It was another
    14 miles out to the last aid station (Dewey Bridge) and then we retraced
    our path back to town for 30+ miles against a very strong headwind.
    Because of where we parked it ended up only being about 97 miles for us.

  2. #2
    JF1
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    Grueling! I want to do this ride one of these years but that scares me. Glad to hear you guys are alright. Good read.
    J
    Good times.

  3. #3
    Thawing Member Aloyzius's Avatar
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    That is insane. I tip my hat. It makes my frozen, miserable, but short experience at Josie Johnson's ride seem like a pleasant stroll in the sunshine. I was wanting to do this one, but I'm glad I missed it this year. I wouldn't have made it. I'm an absolute wuss riding in terrible weather. I really can not fathom riding a century in that kind of weather. I'm in total awe. I think I'll go make soup now.

  4. #4
    Thawing Member Aloyzius's Avatar
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    Oh, how many people would you say turned up?

  5. #5
    JF1
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    Or, how many lived?
    J
    Good times.

  6. #6
    Lower Cretaceous
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    Thanks for the trip report. I tried to sign-up for that ride last Monday but it was full. So, I stayed home and watched the rain fall and shopped online for a new bicycle. Rides like that one I have been on and they are hell. Sunday was great though. Up in the La Sals its purdy this to of the year. Average highs is 80. Maybe next year I wont have to worry about registering early. And I will bring extra layers.

    Randy

  7. #7
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    Moab Century Tour 2007 Trip Report

    Quote Originally Posted by Aloyzius View Post
    Oh, how many people would you say turned up?
    I asked when I picked up my ride packet and they said that 1400 people had registered. But there were several ride options including a "rolling 40", "rolling 70", "climbing 70", or the century. Only the "climbing 70" and the century riders were exposed to the blizzard conditions.

    Unfortunately, due to 100 to 200 foot visibility at the higher elevations, we didn't get to see much of the La Sal scenery.

  8. #8
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    Official word from event organizers.

    A bit glossed over I would say.

    This year’s Moab Century Tour had a windy start as riders began descending upon the cycling mecca of Moab. Many took advantage of our map indicating favorite local routes and took to the road self supporting. They grouped up with others looking for a little warm up before the “big day” culminating in the start of many new friendships.

    Friday night’s Pasta Dinner drew a full crowd as event guest speakers entertained and mingled with riders. After some announcements and a weather report, an honoring of cancer survivors present at the dinner reminded all of the greater purpose of cycling for the weekend.

    Saturday morning was met with a change in weather expectations as riders departed under cloudy skies and light rain. At mid morning some riders were approaching the challenging hill climb section of the Century and Climbing 70 routes. A quick check of weather indicated very difficult weather conditions and the main climb section of the route was closed by event organizers. A moderate number of riders already on the climb encountered chilling temperatures. An ambulance was dispatched to the climb as precautionary; happily no riders required medical attention. (editor note: a pint of hot chocolate, hot tub, and complete change of fleece cycling wear would have been welcomed!) The ambulance returned to Moab later in the day empty. Some riders completed the climb and descended off the mountain while others were evacuated to lower elevations.

    Once in the presence of more moderate temperatures and sunshine, these hearty cyclists recovered their bodies from the cold mountain experience then continued in spinning pleasure the remaining miles of their chosen route.

    Read more about the weekend in the upcoming eNewsletter and here at the Skinny Tire Events website.

  9. #9
    Cycling Skier songfta's Avatar
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    Wow - sounds like a crazy time.

    It also sounds like a lot of participants assumed what the weather conditions would be before they set off for Moab, then were caught unaware. That's no fun! At least nobody was hurt.

    I plan on trekking out to my home state to participate in this ride one of these years - snow and ice be damned, it'll be fun.
    2008 Pedal Force ZX3
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