I will start with a shout out to James Walsh who was hurt badly on Saturday. He was side swiped by a car while coming down one of the typically safe hills. I sure hope James can get back on the bike soon. It is not in favor of the bikes right now in San Diego.
This past weekend I scouted the Ironman Lake Tahoe course:
Kings Beach is home to the 2.4 mile swim. The Swim is set as two 1.2 mile loops. I am not sure if I swam from the exact beach but I was close. The water was cold at 50 degrees. Expect it to warm up but even in September it will not be warm water. You will also want to practice dolphin dives in shallow water. The water stays shallow for quite awhile.
Overall the bike is fast. Where it is fast it is really fast even with all the wind. The issue will be that it is strength that matters. There is a section you can't pre pre ride and I expect that section to be rolling hills. Just after that section is 4 miles at 6% that crests at 7200 feet. The second time through will hurt. The downhill is super fast and a good rest. The start of the bike to Squaw valley is the really fast section. You will cover this section three times. There is one bump in the road. It is one mile long at 7% grade. The first time through you won't really remember you did a climb. The second time through it will bite. The third time through the strong riders will get over no problem the weaker riders will struggle. The good thing is it is downhill from there to Squaw.
It is a runner course. Rolling enough to keep it interesting. Smooth and fast. There will be fast times set on this course. No secret I loved the run course.
Lake Tahoe sits at 6200 feet above sea level. It is not thin air but you will probably feel it the most while swimming. Each swim breath will get a bit less oxygen then most are used to. The key is to not get excited in the swim. Stay in control and it will be fine. It is Ironman and the key is to get out of the water fresh.
It is the most beautiful Ironman course I have seen. Simply stunning.
The question you may ask, are you Dave doing this? The answer is yes. I plan to get after it. I will update my progress from time to time.
It's a good life...