Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Coastal Training Trip!

Paul getting a look at the wave action...

Chelsey here!

We are spending the Solstice week on the Coast of Oregon - celebrating the approach of more light and longer days by training our asses off! Paul, our new 4th for The Patagonian Expedition Race arrived in Bend on Friday night. Since we know that the race will have paddling to Cape Horn, we headed to the Coast for 3 days of lots of paddling, a bit of biking and running and ALOT of eating and laughing. It's only the first day, and we have managed to hit them all! The morning started out with our trademark breakfast of eggs, toast, greens and LOTS of yummy coffee. We then headed out to the port blaring "Eye of the Tiger" while looking out at the 14 ft waves. Getting out of the bay was all well and good, and even out in the ocean, it was beautiful despite the massive ground swell. After about an hour and a half (Jason left the bag full of training food at the cabin so we went until we were good and starving) we headed back to the jetty. Despite the guys assuring me that getting back in was going to be a piece of cake, I was eyeing the HUGE crashing waves to my right and left with some anxiety brewing in my belly. Paul did an awesome job of lining us up for a great entry back into the port, but the waves were hitting us from all sides. Trying to enter back into the bay was much more challenging - as the ebb tide was moving about 7 km/hour against us, so we were basically sitting in one place getting buffeted.  We paddled harder and harder and didn't go anywhere...

Jason, Paul and I finally managed to get into the calmer section after some close calls, but when we looked back we couldn't see Dan. We waited for a minute or two paddling still to stay in one place, and then we saw his paddle moving. He'd capsized 3 times, having to dive after his surf ski!  Apparently a passing boat had been really worried about us and called the Coast Guard.  They were coming out to find us as we made it in and the harbor seals welcomed us back to our dock by barking and sliding off their rocks into the water.

Back at the cabin we slammed some well deserved food into our mouths, changed into our biking clothes and started our afternoon coastal rode ride. The ride was amazing, especially since two days before I had the most humbling ride of my racing/training career. (My road tires had been at 40 psi instead of 115 psi)

Today's ride felt great as I could keep up with the guys and the scenery was so beautiful- lakes, beaches, rivers and beautiful green colors.

Tonight we feasted on fish, leafy greens and some bean and veggie stew I put into the crockpot this morning. Paul entertained us by cooking for us in "Paul's Country Kitchen".

Tomorrow is another big day - we start the day with a 50 mile ride and end it with a paddle and some beach combing..

Happy Solstice!!!

Love- Chelsey, Jason, Daniel and Paul

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