Dustin Rauser // Grand Epic

My first ever Bay Area Epic! I rode with Mike Holt, Adam Garelli, and Michael Best. We started in Cupertino on a nice clear morning around 7:30. I chose my Canyon Grizl with Specialized Pathfinder’s 32s. 

As we were going down the road there was a downed power line from the night before and the home owners allowed us to go though their property so that we did not have to walk on the lines. 

Crossing the stream and getting the shoes soaked early in the day was not ideal, but you do what you have to do. Its was nice that we had already crossed the downed power lines since the last thing we would have wanted was to go over them wet.  

Some of the climbs after that were a little tough but only had to get off the bike once or twice. The down hill after was a lot of fun and got some air on a few of the bumps. Super slick single track the was almost the death of me but I made it out alive without falling, something I would do later. (Foreshowing) 

Made it to the pavement and flew over Canada, Mikes legs were feeling good so he pulled us almost that whole section. I felt bad so would try and do my time at the front but after 30 seconds I guess I wasn’t going fast enough so he would take back over and do another 5 minute pull. 

Made it up and around, Planet of the Apes segment was fun, but starting to get some of the pre cramp feelings and didn't want to hit it too hard and not be able to finish. Made it onto the dirt and right before making it back down on to the pavement I took a pretty good spill. Back tire got caught in a rut and went down pretty good. Tore my bib and jersey at my hip and back of my shoulder and elbow wasn't feeling amazing. My chain got pretty messed up so just coasted the rest of the way down hill and the guys were able to get me back in moving shape. 

Made it down the coast but it was super foggy which was a bummer because we could not see anything but protected up from the sun so that was nice. 

Stopped at the hut right before skyline and and fulled up. Did the big skyline climb which went good, but we were starting to run out of daylight. 

After having a quick group meeting we made the decision to press on. However it ended up taking us close to an hour and a half to go six miles. The single track was a little rocky/rooted out but nothing too bad. The problem was the tress, it seemed like every 20 yards there was a tree over the path which would cause us to have to dismount and slide our bikes under or pass them over the large trees. After getting though that we got to a section where we could get to the road and we decided that since it was already dark and to pull the plug and take the road back cutting out the last bit of single track. 

Over all it was a good time and other then the fall. Looking forward to doing it again next year!