Jessica's awesome departure video:
I wish I could explain the motivation I have for this ride. It is a somewhat difficult ordeal and leaves me tired for a week or so like an Ironman does, but I enjoy it so much that the thought of not doing it is a horrible world. I feel stronger and stronger the longer we ride, so feeling better at 180 miles than at 50 might have something to do with it...
This year's edition called "The year of the HOT" as it got up to 91 degrees around Moncks Corner. There is a section between Santee and Moncks that has a 15 mile super straight road that drills the boredom into our brains, and combined with the heat got us an extra rest stop this year. We were grabbing ice and cold water and cokes to keep the train moving.
Thanks for joining me: Riley Grier (5 time hall of famer), Bill Sweezy (4), Brien Boswell (2), Tommy Bedenbaugh (2), and virgins Ben Cooley, Mike Kelly, Jeff Wise, Rusty Bryson, Jeff Glaser, Kevin Sachson, Jefferson Farriss, Eric Lee, and Robert Mobley.
You are all invited back next year. Riley: oddly enough you have already qualified and automatically entered into the 2013 Double Down!!!
|After the commute to shop, doubling back a few times, etc... I know a few people got way more than that.|
|Gathering at 4am outside Bicycle Sport and final prep.|
|Mandatory pre ride pic.|
|After 3 hours of dark we are south of Heath Springs and on a very nice quiet road. Jeff Wise and Mike Kelly on the right just waiting for their turn to pull.|
|We send the strong guys up front. And then go up and ask them to slow down.|
|Multiple finisher hall of famer Riley on the left- "Why am I doing this again?"|
|Ben and Kevin up front?|
|My favorite section- volley ball court like sand for half a quarter mile, and then gravel for a few more. LOVE it.|
|The guys finally back on their bikes after Jeff Glaser and Kevin Sachson took spills.|
|Robert is a mountain biker. He likes this.|
|Ben is a beast. He likes it too.|
|Making their way through.|
|Hall of Famer Bill Sweezy (round 4 this year).|
|Tommy "Strong like bull, wide like train" Bedenbough on DD number 2.|
|Jefferson thinking of something to say.|
|The best part- old 301 bridge across Lake Marion into Santee.|
|Eric Lee gets a flat and we all take time to reflect on life. Tommy knew folks a mile away and rode off to say hello.|
|WHAT DID I SAY ABOUT GOOD TIRES??!!|
|Jeff Glaser's sand road injuries.|
|Jefferson's saddle bag. I have never seen anything that big or ugly before. At least it was in the sale bin at a shop.|
|Ben Cooley, making black look good.|
|Jeff Glaser on one of his 50 mile pulls.|
|Kevin Sachson survives. He gets the saltiest kit award.|
|I'm sure this was a serious discussion about something important... but cannot remember.|
|Cheers! We are done!|
|Riley and his son Morgan, the best finish line cheering section ever!|
|All smiles now.|