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DMoore: Ride Around The Bear report(7 posts)

DMoore: Ride Around The Bear reportCHRoadie
Jun 9, 2003 9:48 AM
First off, thanks for all the tips! They sure came in handy.

I met some friends from my cycling club at the start, and we started riding just a little after 6am. They hit a good pace going down Lugonia (which has a slight rise), and before too long I had to drop out of line as my heartrate was getting above what I wanted and I was afraid of dipping into my limited reserves too early. Fortunately they sat up and collected me on the first descent.

About 10 miles in we saw a rider standing on the side of the road who didn't look too good, so we stopped to see how he was. Turns out he had hit a rock at about 25mph and crashed: broken collar bone and several scrapes/bruises. We called for SAG support and waited until they came to collect him. Bummer.

Then we hit Hwy 330 and started to go up. And up. This ride has a lot of climbing in the first 35 miles (~6,000 of the 9,000 feet total elevation gain). I was doing just fine (keeping hydrated, thanks to my camelbak!) until my shoulders started to tighten up. I tried to work them out, but it felt like someone was digging a knife into my back. The last mile to the first rest stop was murder, but I made it and ate mass quantities of Advil, which helped.

On to the second rest stop which was only 10 miles further along. I met up with Diesel Doug here and managed to stay with him all the way to the final climb to Onyx. This is the kind of guy who can pull your legs off even if you're drafting off of him, so the trip around the lake was quite fun. I don't know if it was just because of how hungry I was, but the sandwiches at the lunch stop were the best ever. Side note here: the rest stops on this ride were excellent!

We finished up the flat section and started up to Onyx. On this climb my shoulders started acting up again and the climb took longer than it should have, but I made it. The soup at the top was very, very good. Then 35mph down the mountain and back to the start/finish line. My ride time was 7:22, but due to our prolonged stops my total time was 9:15. All in all it was a good day!
Good job!DMoore
Jun 9, 2003 10:11 AM
I went to the finish area around the time you must have been coming in. I was looking for a friend, but it turned out he'd finished an hour earlier.

"Diesel Doug" didn't happen to be on an MTB, did he? My friend kinda matches that description.

Were there are weather problems? I was looking at the results on OCW's website, and the times in general seemed to be slower this year. I rode a 6:45 last year (6:15 actual riding time), which would have been much higher overall this year than it was a year ago. This year's fastest was 5:45, by a guy I used to teach skiing with back in the late '70's.

Your post didn't even mention that mile-long climb 8 or 9 miles below Onyx Summit. That is, to me, the hardest part of the whole ride. I assume you must have breezed up it!

Great ride. Next year, shoot for 7:00 riding time!
I forgot the best partCHRoadie
Jun 9, 2003 10:35 AM
I thought the weather was really nice, although since this was my first year I don't have anything to compare it to. It wasn't even cold at the start and it never really got too hot later in the day.

It started to get hot while we were riding around the lake but right when we started the final climb a huge cloud blocked out the sun and actually dropped a few raindrops on us. We were happy about that turn of events. :-)
How difficult is this ride?TheKid
Jun 9, 2003 12:54 PM
I finished the ride but really suffered. I was wondering how this century compared to some of the other challenging centuries/rides in California?
How difficult is this ride?DMoore
Jun 9, 2003 8:54 PM
My only point of reference is the Death Ride, and Ride around the Bear is a walk in the park. From all reports the Terrible Two and Climb to Kaiser make the Death Ride look easy. And then there's the Everest Challenge, 26000' of climbing in two days. So I'd consider the Bear to be an introduction to the serious climbing rides.
re: DMoore: Ride Around The Bear reportBIG RING
Jun 9, 2003 2:22 PM
I don't get the whole ride time vs. total time thing. There is one time, the time it took a rider to get from Texonia Park back to Texonia Park, like the Cannonball Run. What happens in between all counts. It would be much easier to ride rest stop to rest stop and kick it for awhile, let the HR come down, let the lactic acid clear a litle, take in some food, them hit it hard before getting cold. That isn't the true test as I see it. Although I didn't really "take in" the sites on Saturday, I thouroughly respect the people who did, it was a beautiful day. The ones who ate sandwiches at the lake, talked at the rest stops, great, good for you. Get out of it whatever you want, but really, ride time vs. total time is an easy way to rationalize resting and making the pain go away.
re: DMoore: Ride Around The Bear reportDMoore
Jun 9, 2003 8:58 PM
I understand your point. But when I see some of the really fast times I wonder if the riders ever stopped at all, or if they did the entire ride with "on board" drinks and food. I've made a real effort to minimize the stops, but have trouble getting the total off-bike time down much below 1/2 hour. Actually, long stops hurt far more than they help. The pain may go away while you're stopped, but it comes back with a vengeance when you get back on the bike. The shorter my stops, the better I feel.