On the weekend of July 4/5, I will be attempting to climb Hehuan San (also known as Wuling), Taiwan's highest passable mountain at 3,275m, as many times as it takes to gain the same elevation as Mt. Everest.
Also known as 8,848 meters.
The 'easy' side of Hehuan
You may remember that my CrankPunk Coaching Systems (CPCS) became the official coaching provider for Everesting.cc, and I am also the Communications Director and official coach for the Taiwan KOM Challenge.
So when I realised that I would have to actually do one of these mad Everesting things, one mountain parked itself on my brain and would not get off no matter how hard I tried to persuade it otherwise - Hehuan San, the same hillock that the participants of the Taiwan KOM Challenge ride up.
A very fast ascent of Hehuan is about 4 hours over something like 90km, with the cut-off for the Taiwan KOM being 6 hrs.
I will be riding this Eversting attempt with my friend and co-Lezyne athlete Fan Yung-Yi, one of Taiwan's top mountain goats and general nice chap, and we are reckoning that this might see us riding close to the 24-hour mark.
Fan & I battering each other in a race, 2013
The ascent is not steep on average at 4% or so, but the last 8km are brutal, featuring pitches of over 25%.
The descents could be one of the biggest challenges as the first ten km down is not only very steep and twisting, but also the combination of a lack of oxygen and the cold mean that concentration levels drop. Should be fun!
We'll be supported by friends and staff from the Taiwan Cyclist Federation, and the event will be filmed by Dave Christensen of Il Gregario Films.
The event will also, we hope, help out a national Taiwanese charity that does work for abused children and kids living in poverty. This will be run by the awesome MoreThanSport.org people - more details on that soon.
We'll be posting updates here on CrankPunk.com also about out training for the event. Yung-Yi is a sponsored rider like myself but he works 45+ hours a week as a teacher. I'm way out of shape and have ridden just over 2600km all year, so this might get interesting...!
Whatever happens this will be a memorable (if painful) experience - the ride up this mountain is incredibly beautiful, as these images attest.