Mountain Mayhem, DirtDiva’s Experience.

26 06 2007

You couldn’t have had a better named team than “Muddy@rse” this year!

For some unknown reason, my team decided to do double laps from the get-go. My first double started around 7.00pm and finished just after 9.30pm. The second started around 5.00am, didn’t finish until after 9.00am and contained both the two slowest laps for my team.

The first lap was okay. I made it all the way up the Kenda climb (if that’s where you passed me Guy, there’s no way I would have noticed you – too busy telling myself to keep breathing and not puke…) and only got off and pushed for a tiny bit on the fire-road climb just after that (had forgotten about it and was in the wrong gear).

The second lap was really fun. I guess having done it twice by then (did a recce on the Friday afternoon whilst demo-ing an Intense 5.5 and a Bionicon Edison – told the guys in the Singletrack tent to book me something small and bouncy and that’s what they came up with – good fun smile.gif) had me feeling pretty confident and the course was at its best about then too. I did push a bit of the Kenda Climb and the one after it (SRAM Ascent?) because I was feeling a bit lazy, but so what. The final descent was way fun and I was just buzzing when I got off the bike.

It was raining by the time I went out again (and had been solidly for the last couple of hours), but also starting to get decently light, so I only needed my lights in the forest on the first half. That first part up to the water splash was fine, but the moment things started turning uphill after that, it seemed as though I had left my legs in my tent. I got off and pushed up all the significant climbs, but although I wasn’t exactly turning big gears, I did ride most of the rest (or at least try to – got quite good at the “sit on your bike and push along the top of a rut with one foot” technique).

When I got back to the tent (we were camped alongside the course not far from the start – Hecklers’ Corner, for those that know MM) I had a bit of a bathroom/food break and spent a good five or ten minutes talking myself into going out again. I really didn’t want to, but I knew that if I did it then, I definitely wouldn’t have to go out again. It seemed better just to get it over with. It was an awful lap though. Again, after the water splash everything got hard. Once I got to the Kenda Climb I just got off and started trudging. Slowly. Very Slowly. I went and used the bushes as much because it meant I could stop for a minute as because I needed a wee. Those few minutes respite were probably the highlight of the lap. unsure.gif By the time I reached the bracken I had pretty much lost the will to live. Well, not quite, but certainly the will to even try and pedal. Came across a few “elite walkers” on the ascents, which made me feel slightly better. Had a chat with Jenn Hopkins about how much each of us would give for a nice hot bath on the uphill push to the obelisk. Felt guilty for being so pathetic as she would have been on her 15th or 16th lap by then and I was on my 4th and my team’s 13th (in the end we did 16, which might well have been 17 if one of the team hadn’t had a massive light failure a short way around the course). Crashed twice in about five metres on the final descent. Nothing painful – the mud was too thick and soft – just comedy slides. Finally made it back to the tent and told the next team member that it was hideous out there and no way, no how was I doing another lap. Stuffed a bunch of food in my mouth and then went and had what has to rank as one of the top ten showers of my life. Opened a beer.

And you know what? I’d do it all again.

Anna’s Photos

Original forum thread and comments here

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