If the Tour of Utah were a movie, I just spoiled the ending. Today, my teammates and I climbed up the absolutely crazy Empire Pass, which (with a little luck) I'll be climbing at the end of Stage 6, a week from Sunday. It's without a doubt the hardest 6.7 miles of climbing I've ever done. The average grade up Empire Pass is stunning 8.3%, there are pitches of over 20%, and there are extended sections of 14% or more. For comparison, the average grade up Boise's feared Bogus Basin road is a piddly 4.1%, and the steepest pitch has got to be no more than 10 or 11%.
I couldn't believe how hard that climb is. It wasn't just crazy, it...was...ludacris:
In celebration of the lunacy that awaits me at the Tour of Utah this week, I brought a GoPro along on the ride, and this is the fruit of my labor: