Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sea Otter Preride - Monterey, CA

Today we headed to Sea Otter and had our first taste of CA at Subway Sandwich stop. We walked in as the only 2 people there and 5 minutes later 16 people had piled in the door behind us to get their lunchtime sandwich. The amazing thing to us was that we thought we were in the middle of nowhere…..guess not!! The other amazing thing was that these people were all willing to wait what was going to be a good 20-25 minutes. I wold have been out of there if I were them. But I also come from a land of Heber were if 3 people are in front of you, it is considered busy.

The drive over the Sierras is amazing. It is so beautiful. And on that note, so was the weather. Blue bird the whole day.

Once we got to the Monterey area we were able to preride the course. It is the same as last year and much hasn't changed. It is dry and has a few more sandy sections than I remember. Oh, and I almost crashed big time too. You know that first fast high speed descent on open road? I was on that going well... high speed, and this guy on the "Fun Ride" that I could see in the way distance hit one of those sand pits just as I was approaching and he suddenly at the last minute swerved out of control in my line. Not sure how he managed to swerve from way left to way right in seconds but he did. Then he ATE IT and was sliding on his head in front of me...all while I was approaching. I had to SLAM my brakes on and OMG I am so lucky that my Hayes Brakes kick some major behind because I literally stopped just as I was going to ride over the guys ankle that was still attached to his bike.

I think he was shocked when he pulled his head out of the sand to see a big red blob (me) staring down at him asking him if he was ok. Man that could have been super bad because I was on track to run over his entire bike and then his face. He was ok though.

The rest of the ride was incident free thank heavens. On the far side of the course, they did take that fast fire road descent that leads to the paved climb out and somehow made some singletrack that leads to that climb instead. That was only change I could see. AND I am so proud of myself (ha!) because for the first time in 8 years of doing Sea Otter, I actually knew where I was and what was coming around each corner. Only took me that long to figure out the 38 mile course! In the past I would recognize sections but could never anticipate what was coming.

On the course on the way back into Laguna Seca we ran into all kinds of sheep. Man, that is the same road used for the Super D too. Hope the sheep find a new location by then!

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