Henry is an experienced endurance rider, having completed the Ruta de los Conquistadores and the Cape Epic in his native South Africa. He also has his own business and two little kids, so as you can imagine, he is always pressed for training and recovery time. Nonetheless, with some coaching and considerable focus, Henry was able to ride himself into excellent shape. Along with his awesome bike handling skills, this made for a solid ride. Now all he has to do is ride the TransAlp to become a veteran of the "Big 4" of endurance mountain biking!
TransRockies can be summed up with one word: HARD. When I asked a good friend of mine who had completed the race in 2004 if it would be fun, he replied: "It's not fun, it's hard." He was right, except that it actually was a bit of fun and becomes even more so in hindsight. The entire race saw no rainfall and, being in the middle of the B.C. fire season, included endless walls of dust and a considerable amount of smoke. Despite the lack of rain, there was plenty of water as we had to cross several freezing cold rivers each day. This, coupled with 95 degree heat and several days exceeding 7 hours, made for a brutal ride.
Would I do it again? Not any time soon, but I am nagging Henry to take me along when he does the TransAlp! ;>