Sunday, July 3, 2011

Skyline Hot-Hot-Hot Century (2011)

(July 2nd, 2011) Pseudo Grizzly Peak Century--Metric Diablo Cyclist Club Ride including out and back Cull Canyon, then w/ Christine up Redwood Road across Skyline down Tilden Park and Over da Bears. 96 miles, 14.xx mph, 6,325' climbing.

The President of Ward Industries in visiting his factories in the Yukon, so photos and Garmin data supplied by Christine.

I was stoked for this ride. Weather promised to be 90+ degrees--no pockets loaded with early morning knee warmers, t-shirts, arm warmers... Christine now packs a camera on a small bag that attaches to the stem--which gave me the idea of getting my "drug bag" (Endurolytes, sun tan lotion, lip balm) out of my jersey pocket and onto same camera bag that can be put on the stem. This allows me to fill up a hammergel grenade with drink mix (easy measure and pour) which would be needed on such a "warm" day. Of course Mr. Cold Wimp still took a vest in case it was cold in the Oakland Hills. (Don't laugh--sometimes it 85 and sunny on Contra Costa while 70 and foggy in the Oakland Hills.)

Ride started out with Colin and I sharing stories about the Alta Alpina Ride--it soon evolved into a clusterfuck pace as a young skinny track racer kept pushing the pace and whipping past everyone but Cyclocross Mark for first 20 miles. At first rest stop I told him he had to keep going and do the whole 100 miles with us--he quickly bailed and said he was only good for 30 or so.

Cisco Dave and I happy to be alive after a car made a right turn almost into us on Thursday nite coming off of Mt. Diablo. Dave did a great job screaming at the clueless driver who almost wiped us out.

Colin telling Ken that this hill is just like the Alta Alpina 8 passes.

Sarah just told Rusty that they are not doing the 100 miles as they are going dancing after the ride.

Couldn't come close to young track racer on first climb of the day, but was happy to see Rusty and Sarah at the top the the subdivision climb. Here we had a mass regroup and different tiny groups started out at different times for the slight uphill, then downhill, then moderate uphill into Castro Valley Tennis Courts, our next regroup but only a few miles from where we just stopped.

I thought CA Mike was in a group with track racer down the road and Ken (yes he finally came to the front), Cisco Dave and I drove hard to catch up to them. Then going to the tennis courts Rusty and I were cut off in traffic and the last to arrive. When we arrived a consensus was developed that we'd do the out and back up Cull Canyon and that some people already started out. But some people were already melting from the 90 degree heat and starting out meant NOT adding on. We all assumed that Mike was already on Cull Canyon, in reality he was in back of us helping someone who flatted. (We need race radios)

Colin, Cisco Dave, Christine, Dave, Ken and I started up the shaded Cull Canyon climb--Dave on the 'bent so he dropped back when we pushed the pace--and someone was always pushing. Colin is strong and Dave is quick and there was no fn letup as we zoomed by Rusty (payback for when he hammers us on the flats) and then Sarah. It was like a war of attrition as we all struggled at times and someone would fall off the paceline. Finally no one was in back of Colin and I so we just rode in together,

At the top of Cull Canyon is a nudest colony--our group is debating if we're going in.

Mike had been in for bonus miles, no one remembered passing him, so we thought he kept going without knowing we were doing Cull Canyon. Only about 1/2 the Club had decided to do the Cull Canyon Climb so a smaller group set out to do Redwood Road. After the first climb Rusty/ Sarah indicated they were going back down. At the base of the second climb, where the road forks either up towards the Oakland Hills or back to Central Contra Costa almost everyone else called it a day--even Colin who did Climb to Kaiser last weekend and is doing the Death Ride next weekend. But with the promise of it being cooler in the Oakland Hills Christine was game for the century.

Oh crap-where I work is far far below (by the lake.) When I fist started to learn how to climb I'd take my bike two work and at lunch climb from down there to up where I'm standing.

Now no one would be pushing the pace and the rest of the ride would seemingly be looking for water spots . I don't like doing Skyline going North, it either has short but semi-steep climbs or fast downhills over crappy road with traffic (though cars North of Berkeley are usually courteous.) Real real sunny on the Oakland Hills, and hazy but clear down below. It always seemed a touch over 90--I was comfortable, Christine less so--but the kicker was that as soon as we'd drop down from Tilden Park near the Bears the temperature would go up +10.

Christine ready to ride two bikes. Old time Photo 101 assignment-take one photo of subject up close and one photo of subject far away with telephoto and watch background compress.

Oh crap--on the Davis Double Christine will go under the drink hoses and create a mud puddle for anyone who wants to get water.

Only time I upped the pace is when riding up to get out of Tilden Park a guy in a white kit passed us and Christine said I had to chase him down. Later she told me that anyone in a white kit has to be chased down.??? Good decision was that instead of starting the Bears right out of Tilden, we took a 6 mile detour to down cold Gatorade at the closest strip mall. While resting up we met a nice guy with a motorized mountain bike.

This is my new bike. If I had it two weeks ago I could have done all 8 passes of the Alta Alpina.

OK-it might have spiked to 100--though I didn't really feel the heat until we'd stop. Over three climbs that make up "The Bears" and then the short but very steep Pig Farm climb. From there on in mostly downhill. Long, warm day--but 100 miler put in with some good climbs and mostly over 90 degrees.

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