Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Dalmac Memories

I will be ridding in My 5th Dalmac this year. I was just reminiscing about my Dalmac rides of old. Feel free to fill in my memory gaps or share your Dalmac stories

Dalmac 2001: 4 day west. I remember ridding out of East Lansing strong and fast. I was ridding my mountain bike back then. Before we hit Alma for lunch, my legs hurt so bad I thought I would never make it to Mt. Pleasant . I was hoping for some rest that night, The Central Football tradition to fire a cannon for every touchdown was not helping, I counted 8 touchdowns. Drunk students and breaking glass, kept me thinking this dalmac was a mistake. I remember a loud train, followed by thunder, followed by rain, followed by lighting, followed by high winds, followed by my tent pushing against my face. Why I left the tent to fix the pulled up stake, I am not sure. In 10 seconds of tent fixing, I had my quick shower for the morning . Day 2 brought strong winds 25mph+ and suffering, I had to dig deep that day to finish. The most interesting thing to ever happen to me on Dalmac involved my first and only Regulation length Dalmac Flag. It was so long the orange Flag was torn off by the Jet Stream. The fiberglass poll swayed with each stroke of the cranks. It annoyed everyone passing me. Thankfully, when I reached Central Lake my tent dried quickly in the high winds as I attempted to pitch my tent. I collapsed inside the moment I finished. I was awoken by loud students returning from a away game. This was one of my worst days on Dalmac. Day 3 was cold but I felt better. I think the Beer at Dockside on the Clam River gave me a reason to ride that day. After we left the Dockside, I was ran off the road by a truck. my off road skills came in handy as I chose the ditch instead of a front fender. Day 4 was my first wall attempt, I made it up in my small chain ring, and on to Mackinaw.

Dalmac 2003: 4 day west. I rode my now vintage mountain bike. ( A side note: this is the same bike that I let my dad use on a previous Delmac. In 1999 he managed to crash on and over the guard rail on the Mackinaw Bridge) I only remember 2003 as the year that I was chased by 3 dogs.(one at a time)

Dalmac 2005: 4 day East ride. I talked my Dad into one more ride. I was ready with a new bike and well prepared. My dad wasn't. He had a tough year and I found myself waiting for him every day. At the time, I was annoyed. Now, I realize that I enjoyed riding with him more than the fast group I was riding with. 2005 was the one and only Dalmac that I crossed the Mackinaw Bridge. My dad made the crossing my best day on Dalmac.

Dalmac 4 2007: 4 day west. I was not prepared for what I was about to receive. I felt old. I was tired every day. I was happy to be ridding with AP and I was very happy when we finished. We never did ride to Mackinaw, so we promised to ride the whole route this year.

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