Wow where do I begin?! A lot has happened since my last post so I’ll try to briefly get to everything.
Leaving Napa for Sacramento was great. We got to ride through some amazing farmland and got to really soak in a part of the country most never get to see (especially in Miami). The ride was about 68 miles with decent elevation. Halfway through I really was out of it and really didn’t want to keep going. We got a red flag at a crew stop and I checked my twitter. I saw a couple of tweets from the amazing Debbie Garcia and got really motivated to finish. My teammates were wondering where the hell all that energy came from because after that I was gunning through a bridge around 24 mph.
In Sacramento we were greeted by the Kashtan family for lunch (and later breakfast the next morning). They were such incredible parents of 2 sons who’ve completed the Journey of Hope in the past. After that we had a nice double pace line arrival into the State Capitol which was pretty fun.
Yeah, excuse the helmet hair.
The friendship visit in Sacramento was with the Southside Art Center. The center specializes in Arts and Music for those with intellectual disabilities. They threw a really awesome concert for us and sang us about a dozen songs. Our crew was really into it and we even had some break dancing in there. Here’s a photo of our break dancing Korean crew member, Dan and Micheal Brooks (Univ of Houston), Jason Milliken (Miami, OH), myself, and our new friend by the name of ‘Elvis’.
After Sacramento we left for Jackson, CA. Interesting fact- Jackson was home to some of the largest Gold mines back in the day. We had a great friendship visit after our 50 mile ride and got some killer BBQ. The 2 miles to get to our lodging was horrendous. It was a STEEP 2 miles straight up hill. It felt like we were riding 90 degrees straight up. I totally puked halfway up. It was pretty cool. It was like a quick NASCAR pit stop– a quick 30 second throw up then I kept going. Those chili dogs were not conducive to cycling.
After Jackson we left for Lake Tahoe. It was a 95 mile ride over Carson’s Pass and Luther’s Pass (most commonly known as Kirkwood). Although I was unable to finish the day, it was by far the hardest day of my life. Riding up 12,000 ft of elevation puts a tremendous strain on you mentally and physically. Kudos to my teammates that were able to stick it out and finish in time. It took 13 hours of cycling for some to finish. Here’s a pic of me 4,000 ft up and some of the scenery of Kirkwood.
Today we had a great day off in Tahoe and got to go paddle boarding and hang out by the beach. It’s been a great day!
Thanks for reading and thanks to everyone who has been sending me encouraging words along the way!!!