Chris here, posting because Mel's already in bed getting some rest.
Today was registration day. We got to the registration area early because we wanted to do a little pre-ride. We drove straight past the entrance first time round, because it looked much too pleasant to be a bike race venue. Shawnigan Lake School is an up-market private school in its own grounds. Driving through the stone gateposts you are presented with an idyllic vista - fountains, Tudor-style buildings, a clock tower, and a massive inflatable bear on the top of the registration tent. OK, so we realized that we were in the right place after all. Trust the mountain bikers to bring down the tone of the place!
Registration was pretty orderly in comparison to other races. They made us sign lots of pieces of paper and then they gave us a very large bag full of goodies as various as socks, handlebars and "Sharkies" - little gummie fish full of sugar to help us on our climbs.
With several hours between registration and the evening pre-race briefing, we went back to our lovely faux-wood paneled motel to do last minute packing. There are certain items that Mel and Terry have to carry - medical supplies, a lighter, rain jackets, etc. and so we both went through all of our tools to make sure we had what we needed and no more. In keeping with yesterday, most of our consideration was given to how much food they could fit in. Terry will be carrying nearly 4000 calories worth of goodies, and his goal is to consume all of them, plus whatever Mel can't manage. Mel finds it hard to eat when she's pushing hard on the bike. Terry has no such issues. He has a digestive tract of titanium (he got the lightweight upgrade from the regular steel model).
At this point, we just want to get started. Bed time now, and an early morning start so that my two racers can get even more food inside them and digested before they start.
You'll see photos in this post some time tomorrow after I've arrived at the finish area and had a chance to get set up. Until then, check out the pictures on the BikeBooBoos Picasa album where we'll be uploading additional images to the ones shown here.