Monday, October 19, 2009
Day 12 - Penticton to Vancouver
I got up at 7:00 and went out and drove the Penticton Ironman bike course. I started at the waters edge. I thought of sticking my toe in the water, just so I could know that I’d been in that water but, it was still pretty cool outside. I decided to just take a picture. I’d read the course description on the website, but it missed some things that struck me as important as I drove. Yes, the first 35 – 40k seem fairly level. Yes the climb into Richter Pass is high, as is the climb into Yellow Lake, but there were two things I didn’t see explained. Firstly, of no real importance, but of great interest is how amazingly beautiful the course is.
The first that stood out for me was the huge mountains, incredible vistas through the Okanogan Valley, rows and rows of grape vines through the vineyards and peach tree orchards along the way. The scenery in the Adirondacks around Lake Placid are paled compared to the scenery along this course.
The second thing that stood out for me was, unlike Lake Placid, were the number of great downhill runs along the course. There were a lot of spots that I thought were a bit close to the downhill into Keene. The road surface was in good condition all the way. I’m not sure I got the out and back picked properly. If I did, the roads were a tiny bit rough, but still very good. I suspect this course is going to be a faster one for all the LP gang when they get out here next year.
Lynne stayed back at the hotel while I went for the ride, but we went out along part of the course on our way out of town. I was pointing stuff out as we went. She asked if I wanted to come back and do this course one day. I’d love to be in town when the gang were here to do a training ride with them. That would be a blast. I don’t have a sense of wanting to do another Ironman. Not yet anyway. I have nothing but great memories of every aspect of the training and the races I’ve done, but I found it impossible to keep any sort of social balance in my life for those four years. So far, I’m enjoying this new life without all the training. My expanding waistline is proof of that! I plan to start running a bit every day starting next week.
The drive thought the mountains was breathtaking. That’s the only word for it. Valley after valley and mountain after mountain just kept popping up with every turn in the road. We took Hwy 3 rather than going back up to the Trans Canada. It took longer, but it was far more picturesque. We took lots of pictures. I’ll process them over the weekend.
We got to Vancouver about 4:30. We had reserved our hotel online from Penticton the night before. We got a good deal on the price but what we didn’t know until we got here was that it appears to be in the middle of hooker heaven! Life teaches us every day. Today we learned to not book ahead! Hopefully the car will still be hear when we wake up in the morning.