Leadville Day 4: Middle Earth

The Leadville race course is interesting in that it has this on one end:



and this on the other:



Between those two riddles that need to be solved is about 25 miles of paved road, dirt road, and single track. I needed to ride a 4 hour tempo ride today and so I thought the middle section (out and back from town) would fit that ticket nicely.

I am going to say something really stupid here. The movie Race Across the Sky totally over plays this section. They say something like deceptively hard, rolling, etc.. On a hardness scale this rates a 2-3 compared to everything else (say Columbine and Powerline are 10’s). (Author’s note: I do hear that this is where you can hit winds during the race. A strong headwind would hurt on this section. The winds were manageable today. But that’s why you need a paceline!)

This section was fun and the miles ticked away, quickly. I felt strong and found a nice tempo that I could have held for a long time. I felt, well close to normal.

Half way through the ride was Twin Lakes (where the second aid station is)


And even though if you look just a little bit to the left you are reminded of this…..


(Man does that look high, why aren’t there trees on the top BTW??? Are we really going up that????)

…I felt good.

Then I turned around and retraced my steps back to town. Ending my ride crossing what will be the finish line. Then I stopped for my recovery drink:


(Chocolate peanut butter milkshake. Yumm….)

Thoughts for the day:

1. It was nice and refreshing to do a ride and be close to what I could do at home. Good for the confidence.

2. I hope these MTBer’s know how to ride in a paceline, because that middle section is so calling out for one.

3. I didn’t feel great when I woke up today or when I started my ride. I felt progressively better as the ride went on. Remember that Doug, it happens to you a lot!

4. Starting my ride at 7:30 am was the BEST idea of the day. It’s raining pretty good right now.

Pictures for the day:


Sunset at the cabin.


Sunrise at the cabin.


2 thoughts on “Leadville Day 4: Middle Earth

  1. I found the Pipeline section to be very enjoyable both outbound and inbound. I agree though, wind could be the killing stroke. Last year I really didn’t feel much wind along that section and maybe that’s why I enjoyed it so much.

    You can really sock out the miles between the aid stations and keep your average speed pretty high. I was way ahead of the cutoff outbound through Twin Lakes but had slowed considerably inbound at Pipeline AS, but I think that’s because I was so slow going up Columbine and because I stayed too long at the CM AS.

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