That title is misleading. There's been no bike racing yet. The event actually starts Sunday morning. Keith and I seeded ourselves in the bottom half of the recreational racers, so we begin our 30-kilometer, 1,300-meters-of-climbing time trial in Fernie at 11:15 a.m. After that moment, this week is going to be hard; real hard. I look at the elevation profiles and kinda wish I could just leave my bike at home, because it's going to be a heavy thing to carry. But it will be fun. I'm really looking forward to TransRockies.
Meanwhile, I am already settling into the posh lifestyle of the race. I drove up to Banff on Friday so my car would be near the finish when the race ends. The drive between Missoula and Banff is one of the more spectacularly scenic 400-mile stretches of road I've ever had the privilege to gawk at while creeping in a line of 50 vehicles behind an oblivious 70-year-old driving 35 mph in a red Mustang. I stopped in Kalispell to have lunch with Danni, and borrowed several jerseys from her (including one Good-n-Plenty jersey; not quite as appropriate as Sour Patch Kids, but close.) Ate steelhead and stuffed mushrooms with Keith, Dave W. and Jason the Ski Stop guy in Banff. This morning Keith and I made our way back to Fernie, but not before stopping for four hours at his friend's cabin on a lake in southern British Columbia. We swam and tried out the standing paddle board and went on a boat cruise around the lake amid perfect temperatures and sunlight. It's been a small taste of what it's like to go on a normal vacation; I've almost forgotten. The gorging and relaxation has been short-lived, but appropriately so. I can't wait to start the bike adventure.
Yes, this is going to be quite hard, but don't cry for me. There will be plenty of grilled salmon and massages at the end of the trail.