Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mulberry Gap - Day 1

Since we weren't checking into Mulberry Gap until the afternoon, we headed to the Ocoee Whitewater Center to ride the first singletrack section of the Cohutta 65. While we were getting ready, Chris suggested that I just ride from the WWC to Mulberry Gap, while he drove the car around on the highway. That way I'd get a good long ride in, and I'd still get my apple dumpling that Chris could pick up on the way by the Mercier Orchard Store.

The first singletrack section went by pretty quick and felt pretty easy. Funny how what used to be my endurance race pace is now my steady ride pace. Once we hit FS 221, Chris and I parted ways...I started towards Mulberry Gap and Chris went towards ThunderRock. I think he got the better end of that deal....

This ride reminded me why I didn't sign up for the Cohutta 100...I'm not really crazy about the section along Tumbling Creek Road from the WWC to Dally Gap that climbs super gradually, but goes on forever and ever and ever. I had to fight boredom off, especially since we just rode that section of road at the Blue Ridge AR three days before.

Since my long ride was a spur of the moment decision, I didn't quite have enough food and I would have given someone the $20 in my pack for a Coke by the time I got over to Jacks River Fields Campground. Sadly no one was there...

I knew I had just a little over an hour left to ride, so I filled up my bottle at the spring on the way up to Mountaintown and churned out the rest of the ride. Once I hit Potatopatch, it was a quick downhill to a hot shower and hearty dinner at Mulberry Gap.

Our dinner consisted of pork tenderloin, sweet potatoes, rolls, salad, broccoli and cheese, and ice cream with fruit for dessert. It was a fantastic meal and the end to a good, hard day.

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