Everest No 2 on Colby Drive

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Over the past month I had a blinder, and was in great shape.  I hadn’t planned on doing an Everest, but it just felt right.  I was 1/3 from Everests and had the urge to get that figure improved.  Colby Drive is one of my favorite back street climbs at 1.7 km’s @ 5%.  It has a steadily consistent gradient and can be easily broken into 3 sections.  During my training for Everesting Perrins Creek, I came out and knocked out 38 laps of Colby.   I knew it like the back of my hand.

Here is a link to the Strava segment here:

How I came to Everest Colby with Stryder.  During winter Stryder tried for one of the hardest Everest attempts on Humevale (Whittlesea).  Unfortunately he hit a Kangaroo & was thrown from his bike.  He fractured his wrist, but continued on and rode several hundred km’s with a fractured wrist.  He’s tough!  The fog ended up defeating him as he couldn’t see.  The following month he needed to wear a cast and seemed down a bit.  Looking for that door to unlock his mojo.  I thought that by offering him a chance to do an Everest would bring him out of his shell.  

Suggesting a 370 km ride set him off, & he came back to his brilliant best.


We picked the 27th September as it was Grand Final Day, and was guaranteed to have quiet roads.  The plan was for Stryder to start around 7:00 pm Friday night.   I would start around 8:00 pm.  On the Friday, the plan was for me to work up until lunch time.  I figured should tire me enough to sleep during the afternoon.  Sadly on the morning I woke up with an itchy throat.  I still felt strong and ignored it.  The day went well, and I got a few hours of sleep in the afternoon, but the throat still lingered.

I rocked up around 8:00 pm and brought a broom as a tonne of gravel had washed onto the road.  It took me 40 minutes to clear it off, but was well & truly worth it for the comfort it provided.  It was 6 degrees when we started, and I had warm clothing, but my body didn’t like the cold.  The first 10 laps it felt like my body was battling itself.  Not sure if I should stop or get ready for something epic.

Steve Gardner & Stephan came to knock out some laps and I can’t remember much as I bonked badly on lap 5. 

I became delirious and hit a fever and with 98 laps to go, things weren’t looking good. 

It took 3 laps for the fever to pass, and it took a lot of energy out of me to fight off the cold.  The plan was to knock out 15 laps at a time.  Once the boys left us, and it was all business for Stryder & me from there.  We set a pace & kept up to it.

It remained 6 degrees for the first 12 hours of our ride, and it really hurt me fighting off a cold to stay warm.  I really struggled between 3:00 am – 5:00 am, but Stryder was a rock.  He kept saying “keep riding man!”.  When the Sun started to rise, it got colder & dropped below 4 degrees.  But with close to 200 km’s in the bag we were gunning it and it was starting to look like it was going to be an awesome day once it warmed up.

We had a number of riders due to come down.  I came up with the idea that if Stryder & I were going to feel exhausted then so should all the guys who rocked up.  I encouraged every rider to have some fun and go for a hot lap.  The KOM’s on the up & down fell a few times throughout the day.  David Louis had the KOM, which he had taken off me awhile ago.  Overight he got the email saying that Steve Gardner had taken his KOM on an Everest.  David decided to come down to see what was going on.  Guess he realised that there was no malicious intents and just a lot of boys having some fun.

Everest on Colby Drive
How tempting it was to take a rest on the couch each lap

The day went really smoothly, and I admit that I was a bit delirious from the cold I was fighting off.  

But was able to knock out a consistent tempo.  I was struggling, but Stryder was such a rock it helped me to hide my pain and had some fun.  We had several riders who blew us away with how many laps they did on the day.  Geert who’s been there on all of my Everest successes got special permission from the missus.  And ended up doing 108 km’s & 2,270 vertical.  Christian who hadn’t done a really long ride before ended up smashing out a double century.  With a record amount of vertical with 202 km’s & 4,282 vertical.

Everest on Colby Drive
Super Sherpa’s Geert & Christian

I had a bit of grief later in the afternoon, when I had the genius idea of charging my Garmin 510 in my laptop.  As soon as I plugged it in it reset itself.  No need to panic.  I was recording the ride on my I-phone & my Garmin 500 as well.  Trouble was my G500 is bodgy and doesn’t record elevation correctly, so I’d prefer not to rely on that.  This really threw me out majorly.  I was already delirious, and Stryder had done an extra 4 laps than me.  Which made working out where we were at difficult.  I went a bit funny after 8,000 vertical.  After feeling like crap for so long I had this weird rush of energy and dropped everyone.  I wasn’t thinking clearly and gave it some serious gas. 

Flying like a bat out of hell, & smashed three really fast laps. 

Stryder shortly after had a puncture, and when my sugar rush ended I came crashing down.  I was lucky that we had it in the bag.  Soon Stryder finished first and there was massive congratulations.  We guestimated that I had 3 laps to go and everyone rolled them with me.  It was strange.  I couldn’t see on my computer what I’d done.  When I finished everyone was so happy for me.   I wasn’t trusting the math and was thinking of doing several more laps just to be sure, and never really got to celebrate what we did.  I was delirious but boy what a day we had.

Everest on Colby Drive
JVS and me

Colby didn’t offer us any challenges.  It was quiet, as it was Grand Final day and we didn’t have many cars pass us.  Except for riding 12 hours in 6 degree weather, the day was perfect. 

When I joined the two files on the 510 it screwed me over & only gave me 7,000vm.  My 500 gave me a little over 8,000 & the I-phone screwed me as well.  I had to use the 500, and it was a shame I couldn’t have a file which said the magic 8,848metres.  But I didn’t loose any sleep over it. Of my Everests this was easily the most enjoyable.

We had several guys who showed up blow us away with the amount of laps they did. 

Stryder is an Everest machine, and I was so thankful that I had the opportunity to do a joint Everest with him.  I rode 369 km’s (a new PB), and 9,100 vertical (a new PB).  We rode over 100 km’s longer than my Perrins Creek Road Everest.  And did it quicker which was staggering and we could have done it a fair bit quicker if I didn’t need such long breaks during the ride.

After 2 failures on Everests, it was great to finally succeed.  Unfortunately that cold I fought all day knocked me for six.  It stayed in my system for 3 weeks after & really sapped a lot of my fitness.  It was really bad luck that it hit me that morning, but guess it was an extreme effort to go through a ride with something like that.

Everest on Colby Drive
Stryder chilling out after tapping out an easy 9,000 vertical

Here is a link to Stryder’s Strava Activity here.  He definitely deserves a lot of Kudos for it: 

Here is a link to my Strava Activity here:

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