canada goose jas

Blowin’ in the Wind

“We’ve never had a head wind on that ride!” was the bait that got me to ride from Victor to Idaho Falls for the Western States Beer Festival this past Saturday. It was a quote from the brewers at Snake River Brewing who have made an annual tradition out of the bike ride and for the past 3 years have enjoyed no wind (or a tail wind they claim)! Well… that good fortune came to an end this year. After a couple of sporty climbs complete with bike shop/brewer rivalry, we crested the hill out of Swan Valley to be greeted with BRUTAL HEAD WINDS. Luckily we had 7 riders working together against Mother Nature. Until that is 2 got dropped. No problem though, the lead group waited at the next gas station for us straglers (yup, I was one of the straglers). After a refill of Hammer Heed and Perpetuem I was encouraged to buy a Coke for the classic energy boost. After downing the Coke I felt ready for the last 25 miles. So I walked to throw away the bottle as the group started rolling away. “No sweat, they’ll spin around the parking lot as I get on my bike”, I thought. But, when I looked up again they were on the road… collectively. I’d like to say that had I been in the peloton I could have hung on all the way to IF, but probably not. What I was sure of was that there was no way to bridge the gap with the massive head winds. As I watched the other riders slowly pull away I took a deep breath and prepared myself for the worst suffering on bike I’ve yet to experience. In the end, after watching my speed toggle between 8 and 13mph for the next 2 hours, I was only an hour behind the group getting to the beer. Overall a great experience. Will I do it again? Sure, “the brewer ride to IF never has a head wind.”

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