Climbing Mt. Everest on a Bike? What the What!?

Last Saturday (and Sunday too), three (3) intrepid athletes did that on Ebbetts Pass, for the first time! They didn’t really climb Everest.

Let me explain.

Image courtesy of wikipedia

Everesting, as it is known is “fiendishly simple, yet brutally hard.”

Everesting.cc, from where the above quote is taken, describes it thusly:

The concept of Everesting is fiendishly simple: Pick any hill, anywhere in the world and complete repeats of it in a single activity until you climb 8,848m โ€“ the equivalent height of Mt Everest. Complete the challenge on a bike, on foot, or online, and youโ€™ll find your name in the Hall of Fame, alongside the best climbers in the world.

Those athletes I mentioned? Roy Franz, Paige Redman and Shane Trotter. I have to mention (brag, actually) that Shane is CA Alps Cycling member #7.

And Roy, Paige and Shane are all in the Everesting Hall of Fame!

HUGE CONGRATS from California Alps Cycling to them all! RESPECT!

These very fit, very crazy and very driven riders started their adventure Saturday a.m. at about 7:00 a.m.

Shane, the fastest of the three (and an everesting pro – this was his 8th), finished in 17H 27M and did so while experiencing some debilitating (at least for we mortals) stomach issues. When I saw him just below Cascade Creek you couldn’t tell he was suffering.

Paige hammered this thing out in 18H 54M. I saw her too as I was driving up the hill to do some fishing and gave her a few words of encouragement. Frankly, I don’t think she needed them but based on her reaction she appreciated the gesture. Hey we all know what it’s like to get a few “attas” when we’re suffering. Will ride (harder, faster, longer) for cowbells, right?

Roy took a bit (okay a lot) longer than Paige and Shane. His time: 29H 32M. Yup, you read that correctly; over 24 hours!

I saw Roy during his attempt also, while he was on his 5th ascent, and as I told him, he looked great. He wasn’t even sweating! Fast forward to Sunday afternoon…I ran into Roy again, this time I was riding (to the point where they started their assault), though and he was getting into his car to head back home (with a stop planned at his favorite deli on the way).

A beaming Roy after his successful Everesting attempt

While all three of them are total animals, Roy gets the perseverance prize. He regaled me with stories of the cold and the sore hands; he had to stop at one point for some hot soup and coffee early Sunday a.m. but got back on the bike and finished. Me? Nap time. I would have been done at that point. No wait, I wouldn’t have made it to that point!

To be clear – all of these riders were on the mountain after dark. This particular mountain, for those who haven’t experienced it, has some nasty corners too, so not only did they have to climb at night, they had to descend too. Not for the feint of heart. Did I say “RESPECT?”

Just to give you a sense of the climb and the descent, here’s a couple video clips of Shane doing his thing during a filming session we did about 10 days ago. Remember, these riders did this during the day, and at night. About thirteen times!

As I tell folks who ask me how I do those long rides (again, nothing like these riders have done) it’s mostly about will. Sure, you have to be fit but in the end it comes down to how much pain and suffering you can endure. Needless to say, these three fine individuals can endure, and endured, a lot!

Talk about kicking some passes’ asses…

Thank you Paige, Roy and Shane for the inspiration. All of you are cycling champions and we wish you well on future Everesting attempts.

Better you than me!

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