It was already pretty warm by the time we were ready to leave the parking lot of the Plaza hotel in Kamloops this morning and it was headed for 28 C. So no leg warmers, arm warmers or anything else. Just shorts and a sleeveless jersey this morning.
We pulled out of the parking lot and headed up Columbia towards the highway and there were stretches along this grind out of town which hit 13.5% grade. The average over the 6.5 kms to the highway was 5% and so we had gained 335 m in elevation. This was just the beginning of what would prove to be a day of big climbs and big descents. I believe one of the riders said we climbed 1150 m today in the 85 km ride. We stayed along the residential routes as long as we could in Kamloops and finally took the last exit on to the #1 west. Fortunately there was only a couple of kms to the Coachella turn off and then we had the road almost to ourselves.
There was one of the huge climbs at the 35 km mark up to this view point at the end of the Kamloops Lake. The view down the valley to Kamloops was stunning. Although much less stunning was the blue haze which was hanging over Kamloops. So After a few photos we pushed off towards lunch, which was at the 48 km mark. Lunch was at the Steelhead Provincial campground just 48 km west of Kamloops. It is right on a point where the Thompson river flows out of Kamloops Lake. We could not have had a more beautiful lunch site on the grass looking out over the lake. It was so hard to get moving the entire crew just hung there for well over an hour, snacking on lunch. There were three killer climbs after lunch and even though we had a good rest were now a struggle in the heat.
Ed and I arrived close to first and we took one look at each other and rolled on down the last km into town for a DQ Blizzard. When we finished we rolled on into camp and were immediately set upon. Apparently our bikes had been spotted in the DQ parking lot.
What a great ride it was today.