Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Takin' it easy

A few weeks ago, Troy and I were riding up Bogus Basin road. This was my first Bogus ride of the season, so I really didn't know what to expect. We agreed at the beginning that neither of us was in the mood to go hard, so we decided to take it easy and chat, at least for the first few miles until chit chat was no longer appealing.

I took it really easy on the lower stretches and even used my first gear (34x26 since I run a compact double and a SRAM cassette) when things got steep. I am usually feeling pretty cooked by the time I get to the national forest sign, as the steepest stretches of the climb come right before it. (For those that don't know, Bogus Basin road is a 16 mile road that climbs 3600 vertical feet with 172 turns from Boise to the Bogus Basin ski area in the mountains above town. The "first half" goes from the base to the National Forest sign, which is also the county line, and is actually more than halfway in both distance and vertical feet. Bogus "lite" or half-Bogus is local vernacular for climbing just to the sign and back.)

On this particular day, though, since I had taken it easy, I felt pretty good at the sign. Good enough that since Troy and I were no longer feeling chatty, I decided to go for it the rest of the way. I got to the top in 1:22, which is a decent enough time for the first go of the season. As it happens, however, it's also faster than where I was the end of last season. I realized that if I wasn't completely cooked early in the ride, I had something left to go fast at the end.

Today I did a half-bogus training ride. I decided to experiment and see how fast I could make it to the sign if I didn't worry about saving anything for the upper half. I was only one minute faster. Guess there's something to be said for takin' it easy.