Climbing the Mountain

Another long ride usually means another lesson… and usually multiple lessons. Having GPS, or at least knowing the names of the streets on the route you’ve planned, seems to be a good idea. I set out with the intent of climbing to SFU via the Burnaby Mountain Urban Trail, took a wrong turn, and ended up climbing hills that almost made me wish I was on Gaglardi Way. I found myself in a townhouse complex that had forest in between it and Gaglardi and decided to push/carry my bike through the 100 or so feet of semi-dense wooded area. It was a great experience and I found myself more at home navigating the climb with my feet than on two wheels. I made a mental note to get in more hours on the saddle and the opportunity came when I was greeted by the next challenge: Gaglardi Way. I hopped back on to the bike and started up to the university slowly. I tried to not look at signs, the mountain or anything else stationary, as seeing the oncoming cars and ground underneath me moving fast gave a false sense of speed, which really helps. With encouragement via a wave from a passing cyclist and constantly looking at my wristband bearing the words of “Ride to Conquer Cancer”, it was much easier to keep going when I felt like giving up. Before I knew it, I was at the top and looking at the great building called Simon Fraser University. I’ve heard that it was designed by a man who also designed a prison with a very high suicide rate but, to me, it was beautiful and inviting. I looked at it for all of probably 8 seconds before turning and barreling down the mountain at breakneck speeds. It was well worth it.



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