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Mojave by Moonlight Century(6 posts)

Mojave by Moonlight Centuryms
Jun 11, 2002 6:27 AM
I have signed up for the Mojave by Moonlight Century (June 22). I am unfamiliar with the area (I will be visiting LA from the East Coast -- I know LA well, but not the desert). What can I expect regarding temperatures on the ride? I am assuming that temperatures will not drop too much during the night and no clothing other than shorts and a jersey will be necessary. How should I plan my water supply? I usually ride with two water bottles. Will a Camelbak or other water supplies be necessary? Any other tips?
dry and windyDougSloan
Jun 11, 2002 6:34 AM

Average high and low for that date is 92 and 64.

It tends to be very, very windy and dry.

I could easily be in the high 40's or 50's at night. I'd at least take arm warmers. Desert areas, with dry air, tend to have a high variation between daytime and nighttime temperatures.

Drink lots of water, although it shouldn't be too bad at night. In desert climates, like here in Fresno, you sweat much more than you realize, as it evaporates so easily.

Likely very hot until the sun goes down. Very, very hot.MB1
Jun 11, 2002 6:35 AM
It is a well supported ride though. Have a good taillight and a cheap cheesy headlight. Some find that the headlight is a hinderance to your night vision. There is a long downhill after lunch (if you call a meal eaten near midnight lunch) where a strong light comes in handy.

The finish may have a strong tailwind or headwind. If it is a tailwind it is a very easy century.

Good ride....
re: Mojave by Moonlight Centurymickey-mac
Jun 11, 2002 6:50 AM
Doug and MB1 are right about the wind. It never stops blowing in Mojave. A friend of mine was a Kern County firefighter stationed in Mojave. He was training for a triathlon and his rides would average about 12 mph on the way out and 30 on the way back.
re: Mojave by Moonlight CenturyDMoore
Jun 11, 2002 11:55 AM
I've done Mojave by Moonlight a number of times in recent years, best time was just under five hours total.

They appear to have reversed the direction of the ride from what it's been in the past. Formerly, the first 30 miles or so (Victorville to Barstow) were ridden with a strong tailwind, easy to cruise at 28 mph. The reversed route will make a sidewind likely from VV to Lucerne (Lunacy to locals) Valley. The wind will usually taper off after dark, but no guarantees.

Plan on being out there until at least midnight, at which point temps could be low 60's or even high 50's. I'd definitely carry armwarmers. Since I'm used to high riding temps I carry a vest as well. Don't need it some years, but you never know...

There are enough rest stops that two bottles of water should be enough to do the trick. I hauled along a camelbak one year, but it wasn't really necessary. The final rest stop at Helendale is only 17 flat miles from the finish, you may well blow right through it without stopping.

I believe in decent lighting. Use a good tail light, and I always use a good head light as well. My Night Rider battery won't last the entire evening, so I send a spare battery ahead to the mid-ride "lunch" stop so I have fresh lights for the entire ride. With the new (reversed, actually) route there should be less traffic on the final stretch, but that's also the worst bit of pavement (Helendale to VV) so I wouldn't skimp on the lighting.

I didn't do the ride last year, as I quit doing centuries and started racing. In the previous years the ride seemed to be shrinking every year - I hope that trend reverses itself. A full moon, in the middle of the desert, is truly a wonderful sight.

Enjoy yourself.
Thanks for the replies-nmms
Jun 11, 2002 2:07 PM