The fact that there is a wind farm where we begin the ride to Delta probably should be the sign that I should not be surprised that it is always windy there. We began the day by climbing up Sacramento pass into a pretty strong wind but I pushed hard going up the hill because I wanted to get there fast. It is almost a bittersweet time that we spend at the top of that mountain. So many names written on the road represents so much pain and suffering and loss, so many lives impacted by cancer. But also there were names of those who have been victorious in their fight and each of us celebrated every name in our own way. To those people whose names I wrote, who are in the midst of their battle now, thank you! It is an honor to represent you on this ride and it is for you that we all will keep riding and keep raising funds. To those who have lost their battles, we have not forgotten you. You have left big empty spaces in our lives and we remember you.
After our time on Sacramento Pass we headed down the mountain and across a seemingly endless valley where the crosswinds were so strong that we stayed together in a tight bunch and not a word was said for 15 miles or more. Gradually we started riding toward the north where a swift tailwind brought us the last 50 miles into Delta. Apparently a tail wind coming into Delta has never happened and like the previous days, when the wind is at our backs at the end of the ride, we seem to forget fast how hard it was earlier.
After some time to rest and a shower we all met for dinner and after we ate we had some time where each of us shared some thought about what the ride meant to us. When I first contemplated doing the ride last year I wasn’t sure what I had to offer this group of big strong guys but having done the ride twice now it is clear that everyone in the group has something unique to give, whether it is a long pull to keep others out of the wind, or even just a little slow down to help pull someone back into the group, or help changing a tire or a water bottle with ice. I am so thankful that Jeff started this ride! What started as Jeff doing a solo bike ride across the desert has now become an event with massive momentum toward raising funds for Huntsman Cancer Institute to continue their mission and I am so thankful to be able to participate in this effort.
Today we will all enjoy a bit of much needed rest and relaxation before we ride to the doors of Huntsman tomorrow. And then begin again in preparation for Ride from Reno 2014!