I started beginning of September in Lubin, on this year’s edition of Marathon Around the Lubin (in Polish: Maraton Dookoła Lubina, MDL). Some competitors (runners) started day before – they must run 100 kilometers… I started on Saturday morning with few friends – they decided to ride 75 kilometers distanse, I again ride 110 km. Everyone could choose distance and also choose path during day: we only must visit some checkpoints and get some stamps on received maps.
As year before, it was again very nice time and great riding. A lot of gravel – on forest, on paths, sometimes on sands, and with some tarmac kilometers. Everything was great except weather. Forecasts said: it will be sunny… or it will be rainy day. It was pretty nice in the morning, but after few hours… heavy rain and we all completed race completely soaked. But it still was great. And gravel bike was also great again :)
The plan was: go to Karpacz and Kowary by car, and then start riding on bicycle and attack Okraj Pass. But I changed this plan and decided to… ride to Kowary from home, then attack Okraj and just go back. This trip was long and difficult. Distance was shorter than on 305 km trip, but mountains… they teach humility, because it’s a completely different ride. I started ride real uphill after 122 kilometers… And totally damaged my previous results! It was fantastic, also downhill was very exciting and faaaaast. But after that I decided to attack another mountain: short, because only about 3,5 kilometers, but with 10-15% elevation. It was horrible and destroyed me mentally and physically: 34T on front 28T on back was not enough. Returning home was difficult, about 90-100 km to the wind. But… it was worth it!
Amazing, awesome, beautiful, wonderful… I don’t know better words for this trip. I decided to try 300 km in one day, and I did it. I planned to ride in about 25 km/h average speed, but made this faster – about 27,7 km/h (net time). Started five in the morning. Weather was good, everything was amazing and I still go back to many moments from this trip. Saw several new cities and towns, a lot of calm places. This trip was also a great learning – about my body, about preparing, about issues and possible problems. First time, but not last. Now I can only plan longer trips :)