2018 was a rough year for my riding. Winter weather kept me off the bike last year. Less so because it was “bad” weather, and more because I simply didn’t have the right clothes for the conditions. By the time springtime rolled around, I was doing pretty well. Feeling stronger and fitter because my ride frequency was pretty good. Then summer hit – ugh. I started a physically demanding job and I was just too tired to ride very often. So my riding fitness suffered. It didn’t help that 2018 was a brutally wet year in Western NC. May, especially. 20-40″ of rain for the month, depending on exactly where you measured. I picked up frequency again in the fall, but my annual mileage was unrecoverably down by this point.
Before you go any farther, realize that this isn’t your typical PMBAR race recap post. No way I’m fit enough for that event. I did volunteer to run the Sassafras Gap checkpoint for the race, however. The checkpoint was far enough “out there” that I needed to camp at least on Saturday night, and then pack out on Sunday morning. I opted to camp Friday night, also, since I’m not so much of a morning person, and I wouldn’t have to get going at 4am to be at my checkpoint by race start time.