Report from Steve
The 12 Hours of Mesa Verde is alive and kicking and put on it’s 6th Edition on May, 12 2012.
Report from Joe
Packing started Tuesday night – clothes, shorts, jerseys, sandals, gloves, shoes, sleeping bag, air bladder, backpack stove and a handful of necessary tools tucked tightly in the duffle bag then loaded the bike. A short 22 miles and 95 minutes later, I dropped my stuff off so it could be loaded in the trailer.
…fast forward three days…
The sun begins to peak over the mountain tops around 5:45 and the sound of freewheels, rustling tents and shimming out of sleeping bags fills the air – 1:15 until the race starts. Promoters inform everyone it will be a Leman’s start (i.e. running to your bike) and to be courteous as you pass or are passed.
7 am strikes and the air horn sounds as 350 racers begin running, with only Cim walking at HER own pace. First lap takes us around the car track; it is quick and fast, but bottle necks as we go under the highway. A few more minutes and we are on the awesome single track! The trail’s dirt is fine, loose and finds it new home on all of our faces, teeth, noses and lungs. The first lap is always slow as many riders are on the trail, so I take visual markers of where to brake, where to push, and where to shift. 17 miles later and I roll back into the venue, first lap is finished.
Second lap begins a few hours later. This lap is great – the field is stringed out so the pace is fast. First mile starts with a gentle climb that turns into a very quick descent as mile two rolls by quickly, miles three thru six are up and down, and miles six thru nine [insert Jimi Hendrix song here ] is a gradual but sustained climb. Mile ten rolls fast and leads us closer and eventually into tuffy rim. This section is rough and beats the h@$# out of you WITH a suspension, without it your arms, chest, neck, back and wrists are silly putty. After this “tuffy” section we are rewarded with speedy controlled bob sled turns, fast descents and jumps that you can get some air on or work to keep the bike down! Last two miles we have a punchy climb followed by a fast descent back into the venue. All in all ~17miles and 1700 feet up and down of pure fun SINGLE TRACK!