Saturday, August 24, 2013

Twin peaks and a relaxed ride after RSVP

Team Mang taking in the view
After a fun and relaxed ride to Vancouver, BC (and the after-party the day following day), fellow Mangers decided to tackle a couple of mountain tops.  Chinook Pass, at an elevation of 5,430 feet and the Sunrise Visitor Center, at 6,400 feet were calling.  Pushing off from the entrance of the Mount Rainier National Park on Highway 410, the team climbed their way to Chinook Pass, took a break, then rode down towards the intersection of highway 123 (about halfway down), effectively making the previous climb the warm up. 

From the intersection, they made the steady climb up to Sunrise Visitor Center where, as usual, the main activity was taking pictures and basically "drinking" the hamburgers (the speed at which they gulped those burgers effectively amounted to drinking).  You can imagine how hungry they were when they got there.
Souvenir T-shirts and knee
socks were effective cold

One memory that stands out among the participants was how cold it was after that quick hamburger meal at the lodge. The weather had cooperated and held back the rain, but it was cloudy and a bit cool to begin with.   Naturally, climbing up with effort kept the riders warm but as soon as they relaxed inside the lodge, the cooler mountain temperatures became real and some had to scramble for pieces of clothing to help them keep warm on the descent. Suddenly, the gift shop was beckoning.  Thank goodness for souvenir t-shirts and newspapers (to tuck inside your jersey to warm your chest on a descent).  Everyone made it down safely, of course, and celebrated with cold beers at the parking lot.  One more epic ride for the books for Team Mang. 

A relaxed 25 mile ride for the rest
The rest of the Mangers and Alings who couldn't be at the twin peaks ride took some time to practice the 25 mile Cycle the Wave route in Issaquah to make sure the Alings were training for the event.  Fewer in number, the small group still managed to enjoy themselves and meet the training needs of the Alings while barely working a sweat.

Always a fun time with Team Mang!