Thursday, August 14, 2008

Day 4 - Beasts of Burden

57mi. 5.4hrs. 42mph max. 1vertical mile of climbing

Some do it but you won't find me hauling panniers of equipment on my bike for hundreds of miles and I don't have to either, thanks to our volunteer crew.

On this ride we have the equivalent of 1 volunteer for each rider assigned to a variety of critical teams keeping riders healthy, safe and on the road. Teammates Lisa & Carson begin each day at 4:30am posting signs to mark the way along the route. Another pair of ARI Breakthrough Riders, Liz & Beau, drive the food truck, supplying breakfast and dinner in camp, lunch on the road and the rest stop teams - morning and afternoon. Riders are checked in and out of each daily stop to account for each one. Between stops there are 4 teams of drivers - 2 per car, including Mary & Linda A - who travel back & forth along their assigned section of riders, carrying extra supplies and stopping at critical points to help with traffic, provide encouragement and cheer panting riders at the top of a long, hard climb.

We have a medical crew of 4 who tirelessly wrap, massage and treat ever ache and pain all day long and well into the evening, along with 2 technicians performing similar treatment for our bikes - in camp and mobile.

Unseen during the day but whose work is most appreciated is our camp crew, including Kyle, Caitlin, Michael and Randy from our team. We break down our tents each morning and cart our gear to their truck. The camp crew then takes down all the common area canopies, clears the camp and drives all that gear to the next overnight spot. Then they set it all up again, pitch every one of our 50 tents, putting the luggage inside.

These people voluntarily spend each day serving riders' every need with a gracious heart and never a complaint. People think it's amazing that we riders can cycle so long and hard each day but I never met a rider who didn't think the job of any crewmember was equally difficult if not more so.

Three cheers for the real workhorses of the ESAR!
ESAR Day 4: Chenango to Bear Spring Mountain Campground, Downsville
View Interactive Map on MapMyRide.com

1 comment:

Steve said...

A Thousand Points of Light!