The Challenge and Rewards of Adventure
Kate’s Real Food Brand Ambassador and pro snowmobiler, Geoff (Phatty) Dyer, has been enjoying his off-season exploring and adventuring every chance he gets. Here, he tells us about his latest mountain biking adventure that had him pushed to his limits:
The goal was to ride 35 miles of a 45 mile course with nearly 9,000 feet of climbing, topping out on a prominent peak just shy of 10,000 feet. Chump change to those roadies for their long distance rides, but a whole different beast when it's over rocks and dirt where conditions require much greater effort to maintain pace and speed. Smiling, I thought, no big deal, I have an ebike-- a great equalizer in the mountain biking world.
No Turning Back
10 miles into the ride we had reached a junction, with about 70% battery left each. At this point, we should have stayed high on the ridge and ridden the 3 miles over to the high saddle at a fairly level elevation, instead we dropped down the road costing us another 1,000 feet and an extra 5 miles. By the time we made it back over to the saddle we were down to 50% battery with a huge climb in front of us.
When you do a course like this, there is no turning back, given the elevation and distance already covered, the quickest way back to the truck was to go over the top of the peak and get to the downhill on the other side.
Onward and Upward
We climbed up and up and up as our batteries went down and down. My energy was gone. I stayed up too late, didn’t eat enough, and the gels did not seem to help. I walked and pushed, but the road had no slope forgiveness, nor an end in sight. By now the razors, jeeps, four wheelers and dirt bikes were out in force cruising by. My desperate attempts to flag them down for a tow went ignored.
Finally, I reached the summit, only it wasn’t the summit. It was just a saddle. I told my partner to just go ahead and I would make it-- failure was not an option. The road continued up and down another mile to the start of the single track and from there it was 4 miles of constant climb to reach the summit.
I told myself I would take a break on the real summit and eat my two bars. My Kate’s Real Food Lemon Ginger Coconut Bivy bar never tasted so good. I took a quick nap and then set up for the 9 miles and 4,500 foot descent back to the truck.
The Adventure Continues
For the descent, I opted for the super steep unknown trail that would put me a mile above the truck with a downhill road ride to avoid some extra uphill pedaling.
The upper half of the trail was simply amazing. I breezed through the beautiful flowers and was feeling really good about life again. Then the trail presented more challenges. It got very steep, staggering back and forth, roots and rocks obstructed by flow, and the thick of the bushes were grabbing the brakes. I was dripping with sweat, out of water, arms cramping-- I was struggling to hold on. It became a real fight to make any progress. I was centimeters away from throwing the bike down the hill and never riding again.
The Finish Line
Suddenly the bushes gave way and the trail hit the road. I was saved! It wasn’t an everyday mountain biking adventure. In hindsight, I probably should have done more beta, planned better routes, allotted more time, brought more food, more water, gotten more sleep. But, I’m glad I didn’t settle for ordinary and pushed myself. These are the adventures that stick with us.
At Kate’s Real Food, we are here to support your every adventure, great and small. We are so grateful to the many adventurers, like Ambassador Geoff Dyer, for sharing in the glory with us. To learn more about Geoff’s adventures you can follow him here!