However, not long after we got off the path did we hit a pass that seemed to rise up forever. Apparently, the climb was only about 2 miles long, but the grade varied from 8 to 10%
As I was climbing/struggling/panting, Kevin, one of our strongest riders came barreling down going to wrong way. He had just climbed to the top but he thought the pass looked fun to descend so he rode down to do the pass a second time. "The climb isn't bad, only about two miles long." He pointed to some houses on a hill way above our heads. "That's where you end up."
I kept spinning. The grade was really steep in some places and slowed me to a crawl. I watched as JD and Lacy pass me and climb out of view. Sweat poured down my arms and legs from the effort. Finally, the crest was in sight. "Shut up legs" was chalked on the road right as I reached the top. I was greeted by a beautiful view of the city below, the land stretched on for miles and miles. I probably would have stayed a little longer to take some photos but I caught sight of the downhill truck sign cautioning about the 10% downgrade and that was enough to convince me that I didn't need pictures.
The descent was intense. The first drop, I hit 48 mph without even trying. The road was straight and smooth. There were no blind turns and traffic was light. The second 10% downgrade, I decided to push it. I pedaled to give my speed a slight boost, even though my cadence was almost maxed out. I glanced down at my speedometer and saw it reading 50 mph! Never have I ever gone that fast on a bike before, maybe never again. Tears streamed down my face from the wind as I flew down the pass, wind whistling in my ears. I got to the bottom in no time where lunch and some of my teammates were waiting.
The rest of the day was very hilly. Just when you thought you'd reached the top, the road turned and kept rising much to the dismay of my sore legs. But we kept pushing until Salt Lake City appeared. We descended right into our host site.
After showers and dinner, we chilled out on the beautiful University of Utah campus and took a nap on the grass. As the sun went down, a couple Bike and Build alumni took us to their secret spot on top of a mountain and we watched the sun set as the city lights twinkled in the twilight.
Tomorrow is another pretty short day. 62 miles from Salt Lake City to Brigham City.