First big tow

Four Hours.

Tow time

Tow time

That was my longest tow to date and it felt longer than that. I had to make up for the 65 minutes I missed the previous day and I’m on the hook for 153 minutes at least every other day on top of that. So, I scolded myself and got to work.

Starting at 930am seemed like a good idea at the time.  But Jackson, WY, is not immune to the sweltering heat the rest of the country is [not] enjoying.  By the time 11am rolled around, I knew I was in for a tough one.  I had already chugged down 0.5L of water and I wasn’t even half finished.

Not bringing more food was also a big regret.  I now know that 1.5-2 hours is the maximum that a granola bar and a rail of Shot Blocks will last me.  By that time, I was fantasizing about macaroni and cheese, sandwiches and almost anything else to take the hunger away.  I even could feel the soft texture of that morning’s waffles in my hands.

3 shot blocks left.  Ugh.

The plan was to eek them out as long as I could.  There are two schools of thought.  One is to extend the rations as long as possible.  The other is to placate the hunger right there and then deal with deal with real hunger later.  I took the former approach.  It’s much easier knowing I have something remaining in my pocket rather than looking forward to nothing.

It was an interesting experiment in both food and hydration management.

Good thing there’s a gas station at the top of the hill where I was at least able to refill my now depleted water bottles for the last mile and a half.  Good thing, as I powered down the refill water with still 0.3 miles remaining.  The heat had taken its toll and I was paying.  By the last several hundred yards, I was really working to move that tire.

It was tempting to drag over to the edge of the road where the gravel was, reducing the pulling force necessary to move my test load.  I kept telling myself to resist.  Not putting in an honest workout here means Antarctica will be that much more difficult.

“You’re only cheating yourself.”

I didn’t but it sure was tempting.

Lessons learned:

  • Bring a PB&J equivalent per 2 hours of towing
  • I need 1L per 2 hours of hot weather towing

A bicyclist also told me, “After you drag that thing around, you’ll be one bad a** mother $@#%@#.”

I got a good laugh out of it, as I hadn’t thought of this that way.

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