Sunday, August 17, 2008

Day 7 - One Last Hill

72.39mi. 6.5hrs. approx. 4200 vertical ft.

We had to walk down a large portion of the long hill into camp this morning and the ridden part was a little scary for how steep it was. Many heads shook in disbelief at how we'd possibly climbed it the night before. But wait! There was more cllimbing ahead! Storm King Mt, the edge of Bear Mt where we camped last year, Tor Hill - the views were phenomenal but my legs were long done. Seemed we were told each hill was the last but they just kept coming. Or perhaps at this stage of the game, any gradual incline felt like a mountain!

20mi were added to this last ride day so we had to hustle to arrive on time. We took the traditional ESAR pic on the steps of St.John the Devine then immediately left single file for the tip of Manhattan, down the west side bike trail.

What a sight to see so many supporters at the finish line (pictured)! I was especially thrilled to see donors & past teammates - Annie, Cindy, Lucy, Liz & Allen. Thank you for making the time to come cheer us to the finish line! Correction: Liz was out of town. It was really her look-a-like, Alison. My bad for continuing to think they are one in the same person! Liz & Alison will both join me on the NYC-DC ride so maybe I'll finally learn to tell them apart. Sorry, Alison!

Closing ceremonies were brief and moving, followed by triumphant pix in front of the Statue of Liberty, tearful farewells and one last unloading of baggage onto the curb by Cait, Kyle and the camp crew.

The 70 members of the 6th annual Empire State AIDS Ride put a lot of heart into climbing every hill and hurdle this week & raised nearly $300,000 to chip a little further away at that mountain of an AIDS pandemic. Thank you for being such an important part of that journey.
ESAR Day 7: Black Rock Forest - Robert Wagner Park, NYC
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