She did one of those slow motion tip overs about two people in front of me. It probably hurt but it wasn’t serious. She started to cry and I heard her say through her tears, “I don’t want to do this anymore!”

I thought, you nailed it sister, I don’t want to do this anymore either! The guy in front of me stopped to help her. I slowed and asked them if there was anything I could do, was told nope so kept grinding up. Pipeline-Climb

You’re pretty trashed when you hit the base of the Pipe Line climb, at approximately mile 70, and you see this rutted steep monster ahead of you. You know what’s it’s going to be like because you bombed down it several hours ago. Very few people can ride the first section. Most trudge up it pushing their bikes. At this point in the race, it’s pretty quiet. No one has much to say and everyone’s suffering. The spectators tell us all we’re doing a good job even though we’re moving at about .2 mph. I guess just to be moving is an accomplishment.

You jump on your bike, descend a bit on some rocky double track and then climb again. At least it’s rideable. Ah, you can see the top, keep the pedals turning and you’ll make it. Crap, a false summit, you get a brief break and a short descent and then climb again. Repeat this cycle a couple more times and you’ll be right where the young lady I mentioned earlier crashed.

Leadville is about extremes. It starts at 10,152 feet and climbs to 12,424. It attracts pros and ultra fast racers who finish in 6 hours and some change. It lures people trying to overcome huge obstacles who fight with everything they have to beat the 12 hour cutoff and earn their buckle. It starts in the cold and dark and finishes in the heat and beating sun. The course ranges from two-lane highway to single track and you’ll ride in tight packs where you can’t move 6″ off your line without wiping someone out and all by yourself with only the monster peaks as company.

But the biggest extreme will be in your head and at some point, no matter who you are or how fast you are, you’ll want to cry and say, I don’t want to do this anymore!