Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ben and Courtney visit Illinois

Honeymoon in the Midwest? Why not? Okay, there might be many reasons not to and there are many better choices and this really wasn't their honeymoon, but it was a blast having Ben and Courtney visit for a few days. Lesa and I picked them up in St. Louis on Wednesday the 19th while Erin remained at home to protect it from tornado-type winds! Really. From St. Louis, we drove up to Nauvoo and went through the temple the next morning. Wow! Afterwards, we took a horse drawn wagon tour of Nauvoo, visited a few shops and found out where some of our ancestors lived in Nauvoo. (Courtney has more impressive ancestors than we do.) We chilled out in Charleston for a few days, had a very informal open-house on Saturday, and topped it off with a trip to Chicago to eat Giardano's pizza, view the beautiful skyline from a river boat tour, and walk around Millennium park. Yes, life is good even in the Midwest.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

1000 Warriors

96 miles and a purported 14,778 feet of climbing (plus a 3 mile ride to the start line and 6 miles back down the canyon to get a ride home). The results are in. Looks like I just barely made the time cut-off for recording times..... They planned to stop recording finishes at 2PM (our start time was 6:50AM). Bill Freedman (friend of Tait's) and I rolled through just before the cut-off. Tait finished a few minutes behind me and we saw Trent closing in on the finish line as John and I rode back down the canyon.

I planned to take it easy on this ride because I was pretty sure I didn't have the training base to do any more than that. Tait, Trent, Brian and I got dropped on the first climb heading to Kamas. The major factor for me getting dropped was that I put my front wheel on backwards and decided to stop and flip it so my computer would work. Do'h. John, Peter and Adam made the selection of what became about 15 riders according to John. The brothers Eyre and I hooked up with the group leaders from the group behind and pulled into Midway together. Brian was a few minutes behind.

In Midway, I stopped to help John who was stranded with a flat and a blown spare. He was riding with the leaders, flatted then blew up his spare (probably twisted the tube when he put it on). I hooked him up with one of my tubes and we chased in tandem through Heber Valley, finally picking up Brian on the south side of Deer Creek Reservoir. Once the Sundance/Alpine Loop climb started John was off the front and Brian was off the back. I went over the top of Alpine Loop with the brothers Eyre and we made it into Highland together.
In American Fork Canyon everyone came to a stop just before Timpanogos Cave parking lot. I found out later that 5 riders from the Brumby team (Mesa, AZ) crashed when a Ford Explorer stopped suddenly to avoid on-coming traffic. They were going about 40 mph down American Fork Canyon when two riders hit the Explorer, two more ran off the road to avoid it and the 5th went down trying to sliding along the road in the broken glass. The most seriously injured was Dave Collins, who went flying through the rear window braking his jaw and opening a cut from his ear to his sternum that also cut his jugular. According to a tweet and an email update from race Director, Rick Bennett, he would have most likely died had not two EMT's been riding in their pack. He lost 5 pints of blood but looks like he will make a full recovery.

A crash like that is very sobering. While it's a bummer that we didn't get to enjoy the fun riding down lower American Fork Canyon because traffic was backed up several miles while the accident victim was life-flighted - at least those I was riding with all stayed upright on their bikes and avoided the traffic in the Canyon which was very nerve wracking. I think I lost at least 20 minutes by not being able to race lower American Fork Canyon. In Highland, I took the time to stop by the new house for a potty break and to get a cold bottle of water. I was so over trying to post a good time and much more focused on just finishing.

John is a skilled and fast descender. He told me he passed close to 40 riders on the American Fork Canyon descent and caught the leaders of his group who were held up due to the accident. After leaving me at the base of the climb to Sundance, John extended his lead over me on the final 50+ miles and finished a solid hour ahead of me. Time enough to go sit down - two different times - in the cold river water at Snowbird. John said he never felt good all day and even as strong as he is, he was forced off his bike to rest or recover at least once on the climb to Snowbird.

Trent and I left Tait to suffer on Suncrest - the climb over South Mountain from Utah County to Salt Lake County - and then I left Trent on Wasatch Blvd. The snowbird climb is horrific when you are fresh. When you're on the rivet AND the temp is close to 100 AND there is a head wind the climb is beyond horrific. I ended up stopping 3 times on the climb for a total I guess to be about 30 minutes because of cramping. At one point my right quad was cramped so hard I couldn't do anything except stand on the side of the road and wince in pain. Two different support vehicles offered me a ride to the top, but I figured I wouldn't be able to make fun of Brian for hitching a ride to the top on our training ride two weeks ago if I did the same, so I waited out the cramps and climbed back on the bike.

My ride time was 6:14 compared to my clock time of 7:09. It was hard not to just pack it in and turn around. As I said earlier, I have never suffered this much on a bike. Never.

Adam and Brian ended up not finishing. I understand Adam hit the wall and was sick at the base of Little Cottonwood and decided not to continue. For Brian, this was his 6th time on the bike all year (all in the past 3 weeks). He decided that there was no need to make the turn off of Wasatch Blvd on to Little Cottonwood so he waited for Kristin who was on her way to pick us up at the base of the canyon.

Peter Harker gets the ride of the day award (5:49). He stayed with the leaders for most of the ride and then in the end paced himself and finished 7th! John said a couple of guys asked him where team Sho-Air was from. He told them SoCal and their reply was "you guys are fast". I feel I might not have represented as well as I should have.

Fastest time of the day goes to Todd Brown. Looks like Todd finished 11th (5:45) in the Masters 45. Not bad when you consider all those training miles he sacrificed to teach early morning Seminary. Well Done.

note: first posted on cycleski.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Belated pictures of "Off to Jerusalem" et al.

It took me a couple of extra days to get the pictures downloaded - now, if I can only remember how to do a posting. Wish me luck.

So far, so good. The first pictures were taken Saturday while waiting for everyone to gather for a farewell dinner.

Joel, Will, and Alex overlooking their masterpiece.
Clark helping with some last minute repairs.

Head Honcho's of the traveling party at the Salt Lake Airport 8-19-09

Katie, Sarah, and Mac waiting for the time to pass.
Joel, Katie, Sarah, Mac, and Will still waiting.

Everyone but me at the airport.
Will and Joel having a last minute chess game.

Sarah smiling.

Mac smiling too.

Katie ditto.

TThe Springville Emmett's on their way to go through security.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy Anniversary to the Best Parents Ever!

Happy Anniversary to the best parents ever! Love, Mary

Monday, August 17, 2009


The supportive awesome wife!

The parents
Can you see him?

Congratulations! John gradudated on Friday from the Executive MBA program at BYU.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Derby King

Since Joel will miss his pack meeting pinewood derby next month, he participated in the BYU summer pinewood derby last Saturday. Joel competed with 27 BYU students--some of them engineering geeks who live for the day they can design a super fast aerodynamic car. He came in a consistant third in his heat so we were surprised at the end of the meet that Joel came in 7th out of 28--not bad for his rookie season. The two blue cars in front of Joel's Blue Blazer competed in the final award winning heat. They were also Joel's only competition for the coveted BYU Cougar Spirit award. Joel's car won that award and a 5$ gift certificate. Over-all a very happy day for all invovled. Joel's dad even got a few tips for next year from the aerodynamic brothers who got 1st and 2nd place.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


From a primary pioneer day activity. (see beitemmett for a different version)