Sunday, November 8, 2009

Building Character... or Something

Laura rented the Dale Clemens cabin Saturday night which is just off of the Lost Lake trail, so we thought it would be a good idea to try and ride our bikes up to it. People have been riding the trails down on the Kenai with no problem in the past few weeks, just a light dusting of snow and frozen trails to ride over, so we didn't think it would be a problem.

Brian wanted to get up to the cabin as fast as possible so that we could drop our bags and continue riding up to the Lake. We took the winter route, which is more direct... and shitty. We didn't know it was going to take us 2 hours to "ride" 2.5 miles.

The bottom section of the trail was good, but the weight on our backs was quickly becoming a problem as the trail got steeper.

So we started to push...

And push...

And push some more...

Then we saw some people coming down the trail.

"Are you folks going for a bike ride?"

"We were going to try."

"There's three feet of snow above the cabin, we were post-holing the whole way."


We thought about ditching the bikes. We only had our skinny studded tires on and if there was three feet of snow above the cabin, we weren't getting to the lake on our bikes.

But there is a running joke that goes on in our household that suddenly became relevant. Brian once asked why anyone would want to push their bike 100 miles in the Susitna 100 when the conditions were bad with too much snow, when you could just go skiing instead. Someone replied, "Because it builds character."

And so we kept pushing and joking about how we were building character. We stopped a few times and I was like, "Ditch the bikes now?" (see how much character I have) and Brian would say, "Well, I'm going to build more character, but you can ditch your bike." So, it became a challenge for me to keep pushing all the way to the cabin, and maybe by the time I got there I would be overflowing with good character.

The snow wasn't that deep, but the winter route that we decided to take, pretty much went straight up for 1800 feet.

We finally came up over a really steep hump, where I literally was hoisting my bike over my head, while kicking steps into the deep crusty snow, and there was the cabin.

Here is the view from the cabin...

The ride down today started out slow with more pushing, but once we got back into the trees we could ride pretty much the whole way.

It was worth it, and look at all this new character I have today. ;)

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