Day 1: Teton Village WY to Victor ID

Today’s Highlights:
Sunrise was at 6:30 this morning and breakfast started in the dark at 6:00. I was up quite early and did some pre-packing before breakfast. Afterwards, I was able to break down camp quickly and start riding at 7:00, which was the earliest anyone was allowed to go. Many other riders got on the road too, but it was a slow stream of people rather than a mass start. It was a very cold start, below 50 degrees I think and I froze during the first several miles on the flats. My brother Jim, and his family – Joan, Taylor and Allison – came out to meet me as I rode by the Aspens condos. That was really nice since I will miss them for the rest of the visit in Jackson.

After the first several flat miles, we started the biggest climb of the week – Teton Pass. For that, the cold temperature was just right. I still overheated during the climb. For me, it was very strenuous. I’m sure it was the hardest climb that I have ever done. Not being acclimated to the altitude was certainly a factor, because later on the downhill runs, I still found myself breathing very hard. Actually, all day I couldn’t seem to get enough air.

After a brief photo op at the top of Teton Pass, I headed down the west side to Idaho. It was a very fast 3-mile ride down and very cold since I was soaked from the climb up. The decent brought us into Victor which sits in a large flat valley. The riding was much easier here. Between Victor and Diggs, we cycled on the local bike path, off the roads. It was very nicely paved. At Diggs, we turned east for the second huge climb of the day, up to Grand Targhee Ski Resort. This was not as steep as Teton Pass, but I still thought it was going to kill me. I made though. In fact, I was probably one of the first thirty riders out of 650.

The ride down from Targhee was fabulous – so good that I forgot how painful the ride up was. It was a much longer decent than the Pass, and very winding. Traffic was not an issue, so we could just ride down fast and long. This brought us back to Diggs where the GYC set up a lunch stop. I arrived there around 12:30 and took a short break for lunch.

The last 17 miles of the ride took us on back roads from Driggs to Victor. It is farm country, and there where very picturesque farms with the Teton Range in the background. The flat roads were pleasant, but I was quite tired from the climbs. There was a tailwind for the last five miles, which I really appreciated.

We are camping in a town park tonight. The lawn of the ballfield is very plush compared to last night’s field.

Pictures Of The Day:

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