very steep uphill, no shoulder, and it started raining again really hard and the wind was just out of control. i had forgotten that the visitor center is not the highest point on the road. it was some 400 feet higher just east of me [the direction i was heading] . it wasn’t just 400 feet, it was climb 200 feet, drop 200 feet, climb…etc.
i actually didn’t mind the climbs too much, because it was keeping me warm. on every descent, i had a very hard time of it. there was no shoulder and the traffic was coming on strong. i couldn’t keep a straight line because of the wind gusts. i finally just had to dismount my bike and walk down hill. i was getting colder by the minute… really cold. the wind and rain were both getting more intense. because i was walking i was getting no where. it was so depressing, after every climb i would look over the bend and only see more descent followed by more climbing. each next climb seemed higher than the previous. at this point i was really worried the something was going to happen to me. i couldn’t stop shivering, and my hands were getting too numb to do anything. one weird thing was that my hands could not do anything, but squeeze the brakes.
at one point i had to wait for a construction traffic light and there was no protection from the wind and rain. i had to sit there in front of all these car, pretending like i was ok. i thought my uncontrollable violent shivering might have given me away… but it didn’t. when the signal waiting was over the traffic guard told me to go first. i went ahead and tried sprinting across, so i wouldn’t hold back the drivers. i was “sprinting” into a direct headwind with rain/ice pounding my face and glasses. i couldn’t see anything but a blur of the other construction signal. right after i got to the other side i pulled over and tried to rest, while the traffic passed me by.
i little while after i stopped i found a place to hide from the wind. here is a picture looking down.
this is what i looked like at that moment.
more of trail ridge looking down.
this road seemed to never have any relief. the only thing that kept me going, was the fact that i could live to tell about it. when i finally got to tree line, things didn’t get too much better. the road is completely shady and the rain seems to be going strong. i could not warm up.