This had to be one if not the hardest day of riding I have ever done. Part due to the length, part due to the number of climbs which were long and in some areas very steep, part due the long 7% grade declines with difficult shoulders which required some heavy breaking and part and probably the culminating reason was the heat which was 106 or higher.
A number of riders had flats and I am happy to report I was not one of them. The support staff did a great job of adding unscheduled rest stops. One such stop was in an area where the map called out a town that no longer existed and at which we hoped to get water. The next scheduled rest stop was suppose to be 9 miles further, but at the bottom of the hill from the non-existing town they setup a rest stop. There were two other intermediate rest stop added so we could survive.
It was about 6:00 p.m. when we made it to the church where we were staying at, in Tonto Basin. Ed and I were the only ones that scouted out the one and only restaurant available. It was after dark before we got back to the church.
Ed and I decided to sleep outside for the night because most people were already bedded down before we got back. One of the route leader used the word “BRUTAL” to explain the ride.
Sorry about not having any pictures but I have trouble with my GoPro. Hope to get it back up and running soon.