Road before the official start of the Beast
The official description of the beast is the it is 7/10 of a mile with grades between 14-21%. What is not mentioned is that it is uphill at about 7% for about 1 mile before you make the left hand turn to the official start. It also kicks up significantly just before the turn.
Fresh Paint letting us know, this is the start
You may wonder how I am able to be so specific on the gradients of the climbs. Just to make sure that we knew how hard the hill was, in case our legs weren't reliable enough sources, the grade was painted on EVERY hill on the course. So considerate! Now, my system of hard, steep and OMG is much more fine tuned;)
The oh so dreaded 21% section.
What the course description failed to mention is that there is also a 27% section if you choose to take the inside of one of the corners. Luckily, I learned that lesson the hard way in the past and knew that it was better to go wide. Still, quite impressive to see the 27% painted on the road.
3/4 of the way up a fire breathing BEAST!
After driving the beast I continued my race preparation with a lovely moonlight kayak in a bio luminescent bay. Doesn't that sound like way more fun than worrying! 'because when you worry, your face will frown, and that will bring everybody down'. I should point out, I did jump out of the kayak and swim in the bay. I counted that as a taper week swim, and I really lit that workout up:)
Red Mangrove trees which grow directly in salt water