My plan for today was to spend the morning doing coordination for the Ride, and then do a photo shoot and interview, and finish up with a ride with Max. I got a lot accomplished in the AM, and have filled in some holes. In the afternoon, Max and I met a photographer (Steve) and a reporter (Vince) from the Skagit Valley Herald for input on an article on my ride. Max was a real ham for the photos, so there should be some good ones from which to choose. We rode past the photographer a few times for "action" photos, and then I spent a half hour providing Vince with information for his article. (Vince is the same reporter who did the article on my Hike three years ago, and coincidentally, spent lots of years in Idaho.) The article should be out in the Herald, both in print and on their website, next Thursday in the Recreation or Outdoors section. I'll try to attach a copy to the Skagit Habitat website for easy access.
After we were done at the Herald, I took Max for an 8.5 mile ride. I wanted mainly to check the adjustments we did yesterday to the shifting and the brakes, and to see how Max did in the mid-70s heat. The mechanical changes seem to work fine, and I did not have the slippage in gears 5, 6, and 7 I had before--Dale from Angle Lake Cyclery did a simple adjustment to the cable tension. The brakes work well and do not squeak now. Max did fine, but he does get hot when he is in the direct sun. I have some ideas on how to screen him and/or cool him, and will employ those on the ride.
I'd like to claim I'm "tapering" my training now, but the simple fact is that I need to do logistical and coordination things, and I don't have much time to ride. Today may have been my last training ride before Linda moves the 'bent to Coeur d'Alene, ID on Friday. I'll see the 'bent again in a week, and will do one more ride with Max in CDA on Father's Day, and after that, the next ride is for real in southern Idaho. If I had another six months of training under my belt, it would certainly make me more ready--but I don't. So, I'm going to do the best I can each day, and I will keep my schedule unless I'm injured or my bike breaks down. It will be a "gut check" many days, but once I'm on the road, this will be my sole job and I can do it.