Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Biking Like a Viking

I love it when I have to enter lotteries and pay obscene registration fees to feed my need for endurance sports. Just recently, I found out that I secured a lottery spot in the Sixth Annual Horribly Hilly Hundreds Bike Ride. For one full early-summer day, I get to "weave in and out of valleys untouched by the glacial activity that left most of the upper Midwest flat." The Southwestern Wisconsin course features 10,000+ feet of climbing over a distance of 200 kilometers (that's 124.2 miles). The course definitely delivers on its promise of "horribly hilly". In fact, the organizers call it "the toughest one day Challenge in the Midwest." And if that's not great training for September's Ironman Wisconsin race, then I'm not sure what is.

Apparently this type of threat/promise drives a crowd. Particularly the crazy bunch of people who associate themselves with this sort of activity. This year's registration filled in less than an hour. I entered the lottery for a chance at one of 300 additional spots. Both Karen and I scored spots for this year's ride, which will take place on Saturday, June 14. This will by my fourth year riding in the HHH. The best part is reaching the finish line. But getting there is no easy feat. It's perched at the highest point in Southern Wisconsin (1,716 ft.) at Blue Mound State Park. There, riders are rewarded with the infamous Viking Goulash and Culver's custard. And there's nothing like goulash and custard to replenish the glycogen tanks.

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