Day 4- June 12, 2022: Lee Vining to Benton, Califonia
“Any Day I’m Out On A Bike Is A Good One” – Martyn Ashton
The ride from Lee Vining to Benton, CA was meant to be a transition day and a nice way to recover from yesterday’s epicness. There are no cities in between the two and the next one after is over 80-miles away. I could use an easy day!
There was no urgency to get on the road and I enjoyed taking the time to absorb the beautiful morning.
As I turned out of the RV park and began the initial 4-mile descent out of Lee Vining it became clear that my recovery ride had different plans. Like Mike Tyson punch you in the face plans.
A 35 mph sustained headwind whipping off of Mono Lake and gusts funneled by the mountains smacked me in the mouth. I was cranking in the small ring while going downhill on a 5% grade and could barely hold 10 mph.
I flew to the West Coast to put windy Long Island behind me and the prevailing tailwinds at my back. I like to climb, but I don’t like climbing into a headwind. It was brutal and beginning to beat me down.
That was when my support crew showed up and magically the ride turned around!
In case my words aren’t proof enough, I think they call this a Dust Devil! It was windy!
The sign says “Almost a Ghost Town.” If Lee Vining was sleepy then Benton has narcolepsy. Thankfully it is an “almost” because the world would be missing out on an interesting place.
I found some hot water directly from the source. Hopefully, the hot springs have magical powers. I can use all the help I can get.
About the DIRT Dad Fundo Pledge for Day Four—Shawn McAfee
Shawn was one of the first guys I raced and became acquainted with when I joined DIRT. I was humbled and honored when he asked me to be a part of the little sub-team he was forming called Operation Bear Claw. Thank you for always believing in me Shawn.
Here is what Shawn had to say—“Oh my god, DIRT is literally like a third family. It’s the brothers and sisters all over the world who are just as nutty about bikes as me. Sharing a race with these teammates has been a huge joy in my life and has kept me actively training for all of the adventures that I bring into my life.”
Amount Raised to Date—$1,328
Thank you, Shawn!
Now off to Tonopah, NV!
To support Chris in his effort to raise awareness of The DIRT Dad Fund, the non-profit he created to assist members of the worldwide cycling community, check out this link to learn more.
Find out where you can pledge a donation and subscribe to The ZOMs newsletter to follow along on the journey.
Semi-retired as owner and director of his private Orthopedic Physical Therapy practice after over 20 years, Chris is blessed with the freedom to pursue his passion for virtual cycling and writing. On a continual quest to give back to his bike for all the rewarding experiences and relationships it has provided him, he created a non-profit. Chris is committed to helping others with his bike through its work and the pages of his site.
In the summer of 2022, he rode 3,900 miles from San Francisco to New York to support the charity he founded, TheDIRTDadFund. His “Gain Cave” resides on the North Fork of Long Island, where he lives with his beautiful wife and is proud of his two independent children.
You will read him promoting his passion on the pages of Cycling Weekly, Cycling News, road.cc, Zwift Insider, Endurance.biz, and Bicycling. Chris is co-host of The Virtual Velo Podcast, too!
Very proud of your achievement! Keep up the good work–You can do this! Think of you every morning as I gear up & go out to do my ride.
Thank you for always having me in your thoughts, Karen! I can’t wait to share some stories with you.