It’s as easy as falling off a log. Except that it’s not falling — you actually have to make a conscious step. From better than 30 feet up. Into thin air. Followed by a plummet into deep water. Still, it’s only a simple step. And provided you use a modicum of common-sense technique, it’s proven harmless. Not to mention the exhilaration factor. Interesting to see who can — and, mostly, who cannot — take that “simple” step.
Rebecca Rusch has won numerous championships in ultra-endurance mountain bike races. In Blood Road, she undertakes another kind of endurance challenge on two wheels, covering 1,200 miles of the fabled Ho Chi Minh Trail in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia and stopping at the obscure site in the jungle where her father’s plane crashed in 1972 during the Vietnam War. Rusch, who was 3 when her father disappeared, is joined by Vietnamese professional cyclist Huyen Nguyen. For both women, the trek is not only a difficult expedition across often-uncharted and rugged mountain and jungle terrain but also an investigation into the war that scarred both of their families, the people who lived and still live nearby, and the land along the trail.