“Good morning from Salome, AZ!” That was my Facebook post after my first pull of the morning. And a glorious morning it was! It was the only sunrise I got to see as I stumbled out of the RV trying to figure out (a) where are we? (b) which way are we supposed to point our bikes? and (c) where are we? It was a cool morning, but not too cold. Race time was 8am (eastern time), but it was really 5am and felt like it. The upcoming stretch was going to be slightly uphill…not too difficult, so I ran my full aero wheelset again. I also realized that setting up the power meter was going to be difficult as I was too close to other bikes running power meters, and my Edge 705 couldn’t decide which one to read! Oh well, the first five minutes were by feel until the other power meters on the roof of the van turned off!

Yesterday, I was running without music…we couldn’t have a follow vehicle on the first stage and the second stage was too exciting and we forgot… This morning, I showed my van crew, Bill Cook, Ken Z., and Ron Bobb, how my iphone worked, and they cranked it up for me during my pulls. Nothing like classic 80’s rock to keep you going!

This road was straight…I mean really straight. RAAM teams had received a notice from AZ police that they were enforcing strict pullouts completely off the road as some drivers had complained that the racers were blocking the road. Whatever…I was too high on endorphins to really care. I enjoyed the sunrise as we headed east 60 miles towards Congress, AZ. Our course would take us from 1600 feet to a bit over 3000 feet – a gradual, consistent grade up. I can’t say the scenery was all that spectacular…flat prairie with hills in the distance…rather dull. But still, we were racing RAAM, and the excitement was high!

Sunrise outside of Salome

Moving on down the desert road

More desert road