Saturday, March 06, 2010
Things are slow on the "Official Trans Iowa Thread" on mtbr.com. Things are slow on the chit-chat front via e-mail, and obviously with the severity of the winter, not much has been going on with the course recon. It might seem as though you are the only one training. It might seem like we fell asleep. I assure you that you are dead wrong if you are thinking that!
So, while things have been on the down low in regards to these things, you can rest assured that soon........very soon........things are going to go from zero to crazy in 1.2 seconds. With 48 days left to go and counting until the horn blows at 4am in the morning, there is a lot to do!
Specifically, d.p. and I will be driving the entire course in the latter part of this month, hopefully. Of course, this is weather dependant, but we will at least be visiting some spots and when we do, you can look for your first course condition reports here and on the T.I.V6 site. We will be finalizing plans, setting up directions for our awesome volunteers, and drawing up cue sheets so you guys and gals can find your way around Iowa on your own.
One thing I wanted to address, which came to my attention via e-mail, is that some of you out there do not know about Iowa, our roads, and specifically about Trans Iowa and how we deal with that aspect of the event.
First of all, unless there is a cataclysmic natural disaster, T.I.V6 will take place. Rain or shine. So don't think for a minute that we are going to postpone, or call it off all together. (Just ask any T.I.V2 or V4 vet about that!) Secondly, there will not be any snow on the roads in the amounts we have now. It might actually snow, (which it did at the start of T.I.V4), but ice and snow on the roads in any accumulated amounts would be highly rare and unprecedented. And of course, even if it did happen like that, we'd still hold the event.
In the event of severe weather we may have to cut things short, and we have a plan that you can check out on the T.I.V6 site that takes this into account. But short of lightning, high winds, and tornadic activity, I would plan on being at the start line.
What I would expect, based upon my experiences, is the following. Wind- Yes, most likely. T.I.V3 had some really light, favorable winds. Last year some folks called what we had a "head wind". I assure you, that was not a head wind! A real head wind hasn't been seen at T.I. since T.I.V4. That was a head wind! It is likely that the wind will blow hard at some point, or possibly all throughout the event.
Rain- We haven't had rain during a Trans Iowa since T.I.V2. The chances of that happening during Trans Iowa V6 are pretty high. Sooner or later, a Trans Iowa will experience rain. Maybe not this time, but I wouldn't be at all surprised to see a shower or two. Maybe worse.
Cold- Typically we see a high temperature in the upper 50's to low 60's during a late April weekend. It is possible that it could get hot, like up to 80. It is also entirely possible that it barely gets to 50 degrees, (again, like T.I.V4), so be prepared for varying temps. At night, it still could get below freezing easily.
Road conditions- Typically there is some damage from winter, wet spots, and some mud. The amounts of any and all of this is entirely up to the weather leading up to the event. The last severe winter we had preceding a Trans Iowa was T.I.V4 where during the event we saw huge frost heaves in the roads, soft spots a plenty, and flooding. (Whole parts of the course being re-routed and the event truncated due to flood damage.) Don't count on great T.I.V3-like conditions, or even anything as nice as last year's roads. Be prepared to slog through some mud. Be prepared for soft roads that resist your tires passage. I could be wrong about all of that, but at least you'd be prepared and not caught off guard if I am right.
There are some things to think about. It may help you in what to bring and how you approach Trans Iowa. Think it through. Be wise. Be prepared.
Because remember: you're on your own out there!