Family, work, parties, weather…excuses, excuses. We’ve all got them. Like you, I have plenty. But that’s the beauty of Rapha’s Festive500. Riding 500km in eight days over the holidays … it’s a lofty goal … just within reach … but not without commitment.
3T is excited to team up with Rapha this year to participate in the Festive 500. To level up the incentive, one lucky rider will walk away with an Exploro Team bike. Road, mixed, gravel, the Exploro is nearly a do-it-all, quiver of one, perhaps the perfect winter bike. Not to be left out of the fun, we set our sights on our own Festive 500 challenge to showcase what the Exploro is all about. To spice it up, we’ve divided our 500 into three rides of roughly equal distances to tackle by road, mixed and gravel.
Last year this time, Idaho was buried under not inches, but several feet of snow. Anyone local participating in the Festive 500 was likely crushing mock miles on Zwift. By comparison, this year was looking tame. Just last week, in fact, the roads were dry, the temperatures were moderate, the forecast looked promising … the Festive 500 looked all but in the bag. But this is winter. Winter in the Rockies, no less, where the forecast is only as good as what the day reveals. With Christmas came eight inches of snow. And with that, things just got interesting.
To ease into the week, we laced up the Exploro with a road wheelset and planned an easy 175km turn around the Treasure Valley, touring the local vineyards, farmlands, and the lazy bends along the Snake river. But we had to make it quick, because we had engagements and obligations … you know, holiday things.
20˚F, freezing fog, ice-choked tarmac … below are some highlights of ride number 1.
Keep the legs moving. I know we will.