Friday, December 07, 2007

Rad - Antarctica Style!

Antarctica is supposed to be a harsh continent and it is, mostly. However, the Navy did a great job of building in some of the comforts of home and over the past few years we've been able to find a few of our own including a fleet of bicycles.

Our brand new fleet of mountain bikes.

Sure, the longest trail we have is 10 miles, but why should that stop us from getting out and having a little fun. Saturday night things got started with a screening of the BMX classic movie Rad. Sunday, we got down to business which included our own BMX cyclocross race! Three heats of gear mashing goodness. One for the ladies and two for the men.

This is probably Annie's tenth athletic activty of the day. Renee, you should compare me to her if you think I to do too much.

Audrey Mills, Shuttle Driver extrodinaire and shortly after this photo was taken superstar of McMurdo of cyclocross.

There were 8 ladies in women's division. Costumes were encouraged but not mandatory. A lot of people signed up last minute and didn't have one, including myself.

The start of the ladies' heat.

The course was a pretty short course - right about two miles. We ran down from the main dorm to the chapel and back. Then you got on your bike, crossed a bridge on bike, dismounted, climbed a flight of steps, and then went back down a flight on the other side, after that you mounted the first smaller hill. After ascending that hill, you did a big down hill cruise back towards the main dorm and lowest part of the base. Once there, you went all the back to one of the higher parts of base. At the top, you did push ups and then went right back down the hill to the most famous part of the race - Suicide Gulch. The rec department recommended that people dismount their bike, but plenty of people chose to ride it.

Unfortunately, the winner of the women's division was not one of those people. She cited some kind of intelligence like not having a helmet. Audrey, however, was told by the crowd that every woman had done it when in reality none had. She ended up being the only woman to do it and will probably be remembered where the winner of the race, Kelly, may slip into obscurity - like Kevin Costner in Tin Cup. Lindsey Paige, whereever you are, I have no doubt you would have won the girls race and beat plenty of the boys too. This was definitely right up your alley, definitely a kick!

Audrey Mills making the first women's ascent by bike into Suicide Gulch.

The boys race offered more of the same goodness. Lots of costumes, lots of noise, and cold weather. A lot of the women complained that their lugs were hurting after the race.

Daryl, or his brother Darrel, or this Darryl, or maybe his cousin Jethro.

Kevin Rice, ex-mountain bike racer.

One of our Kiwi neighbors found this outfit over at Scott Base.

More great costumes.

The first men's heat took off and it was clearly moving at a much faster pace than the women's. Some guys clearly wanted it. Others were just there for show. However, the guys who wanted it are what the crowd wanted it? What crowd? The crowd gathered at suicide gulch waiting to see who would mach-schnell (That one is for you, Son) the stairs. Fortunately, the racers didn't disappoint.

Video of my roommate's, Chris Cavanaugh, dismount and the crowd.

Kurt had a rough race. His chain popped after the first obstacle and it ended like this.

That's me chasing down backwards man, Ben May.

All the male competitors.

I ended up finishing sixth in the race. I took third in my heat, but had a blast. That was my first bike race ever. I might have to do more when I get back home.

Still no penguin sightings. I was pretty close to going on the last Cape Evans trip before they close up the road, but decided to pass because others haven't had a chance to go. It turned out to be a good move because I'd already seen the hut and they didn't see a single penguin.


  1. Brody,
    The second last image is the only one that comes up for me ( Safari- Mac os10.4 ) Judging by all the physical activity that you have been reporting , there are no or very few "old" folks there. At 58 I have a serious jones for such an adventure. You blog give me the chance to live it vicariously. Thanks man !
    John K. Endrizzi

  2. It isn't just because he willingly chose to use a Mac (I kid, I kid). I'm having the same problem with the pictures, and I even ventured away from Mozilla, back to the dread IE just to make sure.

    Then again, when you are in the technological outpost of South Carolina, anything is possible.

  3. William,
    Don't know what the problem is - first time I brought up "Rad" all the pictures appeared, now only the second to the last appears. Cold here - as cold as you probably = below zero at night. Mom

  4. Brody,

    It may be that you have reached your quota for images on that server?

    Nevertheless, cool race. You should think about doing a triathlon sometime. I trained this summer, its a really fun training regime because you get to do a bunch of different workouts.

    If we're ever in the same state again for an extended period of time, I'll race one with you.

  5. I reuploaded the pictures and everything seems to be fine now. Thanks for letting me know about the mix up.

    What happened was I uploaded these photos in one post, then made a new post and tried to copy them from one post to another. It looked like it worked on my machine. It obviously didn't.