Kings Valley Road Race – April 11, 2009 Apr13


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Kings Valley Road Race – April 11, 2009

Kings Valley is a town founded by lazy people. I discovered this by searching the internet, which is the primary source of information for lazy people. If I had what old people call “gumption,” I would go to the historical society and try to learn more about it. But that sounds time consuming. You know, going through books. Flipping pages. Reading. This is what old people call “effort,” to which teenagers will often reply “meh.” I’d rather just find something on the internet while I’m working and take this information at face value, using only the quality of the domain name as any indication of the validity of the information. In this case, the website is, and that sounds pretty legitimate to me.

According to the internet’s own Henry Chenowith,  ”a wagon train bound for the Willamette Valley in 1845 paused a Fort Boise to discuss whether to follow the established Oregon Trail or follow a shorter route called “The Cut-Off.” Some followed the Oregon Trail but the train of Nahum King decided on the shorter route. When the long journey ended, the King family settled in a fertile little valley separated from the Willamette by a low line of hills and was promptly named Kings Valley.” Nahum King was so lazy, he dropped all of the time consuming letters in his first name (just like SRAM).

wagonwheelsWell I’m with you, Nahum! Fuck that longer trail. Let’s just stop here and make some mac n’ cheese for dinner.  According the game that I used to play on my Commodore 64, those poor bastards that took the Oregon Trail route all died of dysentery anyway.

A bunch of carbon wagon wheels are all that is left from King’s lazy homestead.

The Kings Valley Road Race, as far as I can tell in my limited racing experience, is similar to other road races. Everyone rides around in a big ball of spandex at a moderate pace until the end when everyone rides as fast as possible. Along the way, the spandex ball passes many beautiful bucolic scenes, but the group is generally too afraid of sudden moves to enjoy any of it. In this race, I distinctly remember seeing the blur of a covered bridge in my periphery, and I assume that it was quite pretty. The one change in Kings Valley, however, is that it ends on a hill. So when everyone rides as fast as they can at the end, it’s a little bit slower than the other races.

The reason that this race ends uphill is because Kings Valley is founded by lazy people, so instead of sending people around the hill, it would just be faster to go over the hill and be done with it. This  little nod to the towns history is the bike race equivalent of pouring some of your recovery drink out to honor your lazy fallen forefathers.

I tried to ride the race as lazy as possible, sitting behind other people and letting them do all of the work. This worked until the end, when everyone chose to ride very fast, essentially giving the middle finger to the people that built this little town (just like the drivers in the little town occasionally did to our big ball of spandex).

But I honored the town accordingly by riding up the hill very, very slowly (though I was actually riding as fast as I could). Also, I didn’t win. Or even come close. And I did it for Nahum King, the laziest King in the valley.

Elevation Profile
Download the Kings Valley GPS file