Friday, January 14, 2005

Mt Hamilton Challenge 2005

Note: In October 2009 Yahoo Geocities--their free web page service for dummies, is going to be shut down. Luckily I started using (the better) Google Blogger a little over a year ago. From old reports on Geocities there are photos I hope to transfer over in the next two months, and some summaries of seminal rides. (*** full writeup) Another post that Yahoo Cities lost prematurely early but I still had the outline the report was based on.

( April 30, 2005) Mt Hamilton Challenge, 133 miles, 8,300' climbing, 15.7 mph, w/ CA Mike, Jack, Big Mike, Stephan, June, Doug, Big Chris, Tom T., Stephan, ???

Preamble (2009) YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. This is the cheapest century. It is also the century with the lowest energy I've done. You bring your own food, and give it to some ancient cyclists (Jack says there was a big cycling club in San Jose when Lockheed was booming-2 decades ago), who deliver it to 3 rest stops--one on top of Mt. Hamilton, one on a wide open barren field on Mines Road, and one in a park in Pleasanton. The ancients also supply water and lemonade.

Ride starts in suburban ugly San Jose, goes up the gentle side of Mt. Hamilton, down the steep side and to the end of Mines Road where you again ride through suburbia (Livermore/ Pleasanton), though nicer than San Jose. Then up the beautiful Calavaras and back to suburban ugly San Jose. End o ride is as quiet as a library--or cemetery.

Interesting thing about doing this ride is you plan all your meals, so you have to figure out what you need to send to all the rest stops. It was my first time seriously thinking about how many carbs to consume an hour etc. Unfortunately my food list got lost when Geocities blew up.

Not that many riders on this course and riders get split up on 130 hilly miles, so you don't see many. Most energy is when Devil Mountain Double riders (200 miles, @18,000' climbing) pass in the other direction. So good training ride and good that did it with a bunch of clubmates, but nothing to write home about. Below are my outline notes from the ride.

-Sorry didn’t sign up for DMD toward end of week, except for when I woke up at 4:15 and it was 47 degrees, which is when I’d be starting DVD,
-Left too fn late 7:45 , Jack had emailed the day before that 7:45 was too late (as opposed to proposed start of 7:30—he was spot on)
-Casual ride through ugly San Jose streets-first 10-15 miles
-Some nice short steep hills, stop at Alum Rock at bathroom
-Nice 15 mile climb to Hamilton, Tom and I at 10mph except when he spots friend and bs’s for 3-4 minutes, then we hold it again at 10mph until near the top we drop to 9. Tom has said something like "good climbers can do this over 10mph."

-Top of Hamilton nice and warm; one worker looks like he will keel over. Luckily they take knee warmers (which I should have kept on) for Hammy's downhill.
-Half DC leave 1 min before me and I’m chasing on downhill-not a good idea. All of a sudden stopped at side of road-Chris has blowout. June and I wait at bottom of hill @30 minutes-Chris had fallen, bike needs repair which Chris took care of, bead blown off so underinflated..
-Tom, Jack, Mike on ahead (Tom thinks I’m up the road and he is chasing me). Doug, June, Steve up ahead. On rollers I try to stay in middle of Doug group and Chris so we’ll be in sight.
-On flat toward junction we get into paceline-June has leg cramps. A fast yellow fairing recumbent pulls, then stops for photos-took a few of my drafting him. Chris comes along-in back of fast paceline. He stops at Junction where DMD folks give him a baby blue tire, Mike is holding a can of coke he grifted.
-Steve a little worried re rest stops 35 miles apart-he hadn’t done ride this long (neither had Chris)
-Going down we had seen lead group from DVD who were all business. Now we see Don, Steve B. (right before county line) and then riders just eager to hang on. They are pumped when we shout out.
above--(1) Mt Hamilton observatory (2) Big Mike at the top of Hammy--background has the road we'd come up from San Jose (3) I'm with June, the most consistent climber, somewhere on Mines Road (4) Down the ramp from the observatory. Photos not taken on Mt. Hamilton Challenge but on a similar ride when we rode up to Mt. Hammy from the hard Mines Road side.

-Still stuffed at 2nd rest stop, which has pebbly beach type area a few miles after county line. Give away food. Say “who wants my banana” while woman spilling out of her sports bra walks by. Not real hungry-it is cooling down. Get spasm bad on inner thigh-right on varicose vein.
-Asked a few times, what year is your Death Ride jersey from—mention it is last years but all rainbow colors taken out, it is mostly blue for “blue lakes road” bonus pass. This one is taken in the actual ride--getting close to the Junction from Hammy direction, we're trying to draft a 'bent--which we can only do when the guy slows down to take photos. I'm leading the charge--Doug, Big Chris, and June on my wheel on the our mini paceline. (Thanks for Bill Bushnell taking an action shot of our group.)

-We keep in a nice group for awhile, then Chris hammers and I try to keep up,. Tandem flies by but on one downhill section they are behind em with their screechy brakes-kind of unnerving,
-Unlike Chico, as not alot of riders on route, most who started ahead of us, no digging into catch anyone ride in paceline. We ride behind Comotion tandem (no softride beam), guy with GT joins us. Going though streets of Livermore, and getting close to middl;e of ride when Steve runs over a rock and has double puncutres. Its Cooling off,.
-Pull into 3rd rest stop—near downtown livermore/ Pleasanton? Just like 1st rest stop nice bathrooms. Nice picnic grove but kinda cool. Tom waiting for us,. Cute aide worker (mentions boyfriend to Chris dismay) comes over and fixes him up-indicates that Chris should shave his legs. Everyone has extra food—I bum some cytomax powder, can’t drink any more lemonade.
-Nice paceline to Calavaras, not much headwind,. GT rider fell off but I didn’t see him drop out. Chris doing most of pulling, 1st 100 for him and Steve—everyone looking good. This would have been great two (warmer and earlier) hours ago among lots of cyclists.
-On Calavaras Chris and Tom pick up pace-I’m having trouble staying with them but then get my second legs. On sharp uphill I spin hard, jump out, Chris yells OK, Tom dropped, and for rest of ride Chris and I going hard, usually at 11mph, but bsing. Whole group rejoins in less than 2 minutes, June doing great even having leg cramps. Then straight, fast shot down to ugly Milpitas and we are back on city streets. No Tom, looks like he went short way back

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