This past weekend I hit the road and visited St. George for the Intermountain Race Managers Roundtable.
I’m not technically a race director, though that might come in the near future. I will, however, promote a handful of events that — if I’m lucky — will attract several hundred particpants. So I thought I’d sit around in sponge mode and just learn as much as possible from the 20-30 race directors that were there to discuss ways to make their events more successful in pretty much all areas.
Lots of good information and I met a lot of good people with some great ideas. Hopefully I can take some of those ideas and use them.
Not entirely coincidentally, I took my bike. And my running shoes.
I mean, it was 60+ degrees and sunny skies. How could I not take my bike and my running shoes.
As part of the IRMR I was given an entry into the St. George half marathon or 5K. I didn’t quite feel up to 13.1 miles, so I opted for the shorter run and had a pretty good experience. I didn’t push the pace at all and just ran tempo but clocked in at 26:09 — good enough for 11th in the Men’s 40-44 age group. Not too bad, not too good, but OK. I was just working out, not truly racing, so my time and place weren’t really a consideration.
After that, I changed into the stretchy pants and hit the Veyo Loop.
That stretch of road contains some of the most magnificent scenery known to cyclists.
Red Rock bluffs, stunning vistas and The Veyo Wall.
It’s all part of the Ironman St. George course and, with a wonderful weather weekend, there were oodles of cyclists on the road. I headed out alone from my condo but latched on to a group of 10 others while riding through Kayenta. We rolled up to Gunlock where the floods from the last couple of months had left their mark.
The bridge over the river just north of Gunlock was washed out and under reconstruction. But there was a fairly easy hike-a-bike and I was on my way with the only other person who dared go past. The rest of the group, apparently, had had enough climbing and hitting the Wall wasn’t in the cards for them.
My riding partner was Byron, a sales rep for Specialized, who owns a home in St. George and comes down from Salt Lake City to ride and golf quite often.
We hit the climb and slowly made our way to the top, thankfully with a tailwind as we climbed. Even with the wind, my pace was glacial and I was hurting as I hit the summit and rolled to what might be the best bike-ride pit stop ever — Veyo Pies.
And, really, who can resist one of their delicious pastries while you catch your breath?
Eating topping off the water bottles and washing down our snack, we headed back to town and descended Snow Canyon.
I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure when God hops on his bike, one of his favorite places to ride is Snow Canyon.
What an amazing descent. Gentle sweeping turns, smooth asphalt and gorgeous views in every possible direction.
Simply put, a fabulous Saturday in Dixie.