Tysen and I went mountain biking at Pemberton Trail this morning. This was our last long training ride for the upcoming Barn Burner in Flagstaff this upcoming weekend. There has been the oddest weather this June. It was actually cool this morning at 6:30am. I think it was in the 70’s. The cool weather brought out a lot of mountain bikers to McDowell Mountain Park this morning. The strange thing was, that there were more mountain bikers at the Pemberton Trail than the Competitive Track. Not only were there a lot of other mountain bikers, but most of them were doing more than one lap. We rode the trail clockwise, but it seemed everybody else was riding it counter clockwise, so we saw the same groups twice during our 2 laps of 15.3 miles each.
Both of us were pretty tired after 2 laps, but the 4 hours of sleep I got didn’t help. Our exhaustion, is making us question our fitness for the 104 mile race. I know I can do it, but how fast? Tysen is questioning if he can do it. Actually, I’m more worried about getting up at 5am than riding my half of the 104 miles.
Pemberton Trail is pretty easy. Most of the trail is smooth rolling. There is nothing technical on the trail at all. Riding clockwise, the first 5 miles is a gradual climb with a couple rocky sections. After mile 5 to about mile 9 is mostly rolling smooth singletrack, gradually uphill. From mile 9 to about mile 13 is smooth, gradual downhill, where you can maintain about 20 mph with very little effort. From mile 13 to the end is mostly smooth twisty singletrack with a gradual downhill. So, if you make it to mile 9, you can pretty much make it the rest of the way without much effort. See profile below.