Newsletter - 2001 Archive

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That Dam 300k

Ray Wagner


It was a cool 5 degrees when 5 devoted Radonneurs met at the base of the Revelstoke hydro dam to begin the inaugural Dam to Dam 300. A measure of the ride to come was the, from the get go, 2.5 km climb. From then on, the paved shouldered road led the cyclists on a roller coaster ride of climbs and descents northward towards their destination the Mica Hydro Dam. A standout of this 12 to 16 hour journey was the very, very, very few vehicles encountered. We seemed to own the road. On route were encountered, as one rider termed "better than any zoo", frequent sightings of deer, moose, caribou, black bear, eagles and river otter. At the first control at the Downie Resort the older lady, at the sparsely supplied store, needed help reading the clock for the time. She seemed to look at us quite strangely when we indicated our purpose. At the town of Mica Creek, a few kilometers from the turn around point, the tandem team of Bob and Richard spotted two bikes at the cafeteria. As the story was told to me, Bob thought he caught Peter and I taking a little too long of a break, and they proceeded ahead anticipating reaching the turn around first. After climbing the 3 km to the top of the Mica Dam, Bob was somewhat disappointed to find the hole punch already there. The hole punch was a twist to an unmanned control point whereby we had the fastest rider carry the punch to the turn around and the last rider bring it back. Each rider punched his or her card at the control. Meanwhile the Mica cafeteria served up some delicious soup and sandwich for only $3. Peter and I didn't have too firm a completion time, but with 75 km to go we thought we might be able to make it in less than 12 hours. We were making great time for the next 25 km and slowed a bit the 25 km after that. Just when it seemed possible a head wind began and there were more climbs than we remembered. We knew the last 2.5 km were all downhill so we kept pushing the pace. Our ride ended with two happy smiles as we clocked 11:58. As the day progressed we were reduced to jersey and shorts, however our following randonneurs experienced some thundershowers. That Dam 300 will be ridden again!