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North Woods Gravel Grind 2018 - Rangeley ME

by Sarah Brown • September 17, 2018

I was excited to see a gravel race with a mountain bike category. I love gravel races, but my full suspension mountain bike is just not as speedy as a gravel bike. Only having to drive an hour on race day made me even more excited.

Talk about a challenging start! The first climb was on pavement and came right away. It was steep, long and grueling. By the time we reached the top, I wasn't sure my heart rate would ever come down again. I was pretty sure there was only one woman in the mountain bike division ahead of me, and she was within my sight.

From the top of the climb we turned on to gravel. From here, the rest of the course was mostly gravel with a few short paved sections. The rest of the climbs felt easy after that first one. I truly enjoyed exploring parts of the Maine woods I had never seen. The views were nice, too.

I was quite surprised when I was approaching the finish at only two and a half hours. The course was so fast! I finished the 35 miles in 2:33, putting me in second place, just moments behind the leader. I am quite happy with my finish, and truly enjoyed this race.

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