Sunday, February 23, 2014
It was a brutal weekend of mishaps, near collisions, slide outs and impacts. The lure of longer days with warm sun and mild temperatures brought out the spring neophytes. The mountain traffic has a yearly ebb and flow and gearing up the "road memory" took a toll this weekend.
Saturday acquaintances returning from an epic ride to the Baldy Ski lifts crashed at mile marker 8.5 and required medical aid. John was there as the helicopter landed around 1:30 pm. Merely an hour after my hike.
Sunday on the road. A cyclist reported a motorcyclist going wide on a blind curve at mile marker 10.4 and he felt very lucky to be up right. I was just seconds behind them, but it happened out of sight. I remember how fast the motorcyclist buzzed past me on the straight away.
Two more miles up the road, I had been leap frogging a pair of cyclists. First ahead, then they would catch and pass me. The two cyclists had just passed me by and were at the right hand bend above mm 8.9. They stopped to assist a motorcyclist who had slide out. His motorcycle was laying across the two lanes blocking traffic in both directions. As they assisted rolling up the heavy bike, I realized that a car club was approaching. I stopped and waved down on coming traffic as a dozen BMW Z4 convertible cars heeded my waves. The front driver had a radio to alert the other club drivers. He informed me of the accident at mile marker 12.71. He said the rider was down hard. Dark kit. Road was closed.
The motorcycle was moved out of the way and all was well. Met up with John (!?!) who had attacked the road early.
Not alot of facts on the accident. Red sporty vehicle with black components. Last digits of the license was "007". Aging paint job. Yellow and Black Bike. Rider air lifted by helicopter. Go Pro Camera is in the CHP's possession.
The wind was gusting and between a friend's broken collarbone, my very light bike pushed about by the wind, my descending mojo was gone.
To those who are recouping, I wish you well.
Updated: "According to facebook updates, he got out of surgery on his left leg and feels better. No broken bones. There was a scratch to his face. Thanks to all the fellow riders who offered assistance. Be safe!"
Monday, February 17, 2014
Saturday. The legs felt strong and they took me to Glendora Ridge Road Mile Marker 4. Or what I call Fork plus 4. Or the point of no return. It was day of connecting with friends along the road. Eric back from his hiatus and working on his goals of Solvang 100, Le Tape, Levi's Gran Fondo. Fixie John and Minnie in his backpack. I had to hear his narrow escape from the fire first hand. Ken who breezed past and spurred me on to hammer on the pedals. All before the first saddle. Everyone flocked to the road with promising weather. Bill was plowing up the road. Matt and Mark caught up with at the shed. First time on GRR for me in a while.
Baldy at GRR - mm4
Matt and Mark
Baldy at GRR mm 1.2
Mike at the shed.
Thursday, February 13, 2014
Sunday, February 9, 2014
Saturday. A bit chilly in the morning, however a great day for riding. Moisture in the air, kept the temperature cool yet inviting. Rode to the shed. My best winter time. Photos of Bill, Matt and the view from First Saddle.
Bonus Ride on Sunday afternoon. The ridge was enshrouded in clouds and moisture until the sun broke through around 1 pm. Finally motivated myself around 2:30 pm. My legs said I was crazy by the ranger station incline. When I got home, I was thrilled to have ridden. I should do that more often. Perhaps the Ensure Muscle Shake and the new cleats helped the knee recovery.
Friday, February 7, 2014
San Dimas, California (February 6, 2014) - The San Dimas Stage Race organization is searching for families in the San Dimas Area who would like to host riders for the 2014 race! Host housing is needed for the professional men’s and women’s bicycle racing teams competing at the 2014 San Dimas Stage Race – an opportunity for families in the area to connect with National Champions, Olympians, future Olympians, and hard-working racers striving to fulfill dreams in professional bike racing. The race runs from March 28-30 but teams typically arrive 1-2 days before the race and usually leave the day after the race.
We are in search of families who live within a 30-minute maximum drive of San Dimas, CA. Opportunities exist to host riders from men’s and women’s teams. See http://sdsr.info for race information. Host homes need to provide: a bed space (couch or air mattress is fine) for each rider, kitchen privileges and refrigerator space; garage or other safekeeping space for bicycles. Host homes ARE NOT expected to provide: transportation or food, the teams will provide their own transportation and meals. Some families do like to provide some shared meals, but are not expected to do so.
Host families are encouraged to engage with their guest racers, as experience shows that involved host families find the experience most rewarding when they connect with their guests. Come watch them race, talk to them find out what the life of a professional road cyclist is all about. If you would like to host a cycling team, please send an email to HostHousing@sdsr.info with the following information: Name, address, City, Phone, Email and the number of riders you can host. Whether you can host one or two riders, or whether you and your neighbors can host a full team of eight; we want to hear from you!
Greg Hayes, SDSR Host Housing Coordinator
Tuesday, February 4, 2014
Saturday, February 1, 2014
After forty days of no rain, Thursday’s drizzle was a welcome relief to the simmering burnt mountain. Smoldering embers and roots hidden from sight lingered from the blaze of two weeks ago. Swaths of ash spread over the seared blackened hillside like webs of white lace casually thrown over now barren ground. Red colored fire retardant edged the borders embraced by the foliage that survived. The light sprinkle gently quenched the scorched earth with a cold northern dampness that brought the hope of more to follow.
Fine smoke particles clung in mid-air stirred by the daily ebbs of on-shore, off-shore winds had overstayed their welcome. The precipitation washed the air clean into something breathable once more.
Saturday dawned to a crispness of winter with a clear, cool blue sky and temperatures in the 40s F. The southern sun slowly warmed the day and I rode out rather late in the morning with a backpack full of chill reducing layers. My lungs breathed deep and I met up with Matt to ride up Glendora Mountain Road. The fire had skirted the road and only two places where the damage was visible from the two hair pin turns of the Colby Trail. The sky was brilliant, the sun pleasant and the wind moderate.
The few minutes of pedaling indoors I completed this week never matched the struggle of heart, lungs and legs as I pedaled my bike up the terrain. About seven miles into the ride, I suggested that Matt should also train with a backpack of weight to improve his fitness. It was at this point where I knew that the goal was always four more miles than the usual turn around point of the shed. Fortunately, John C. a co-worker of Matt riding down the mountain, joined us a mile from Newman’s point. John having ridden to Fork Plus Four, updated us on the weather status. The wind gusts were “40 mph” and strong enough to nearly stop him. My legs must thank John for this bit of information. And as if on cue, we turned the corner at Newman’s Point to be hit with a blast of wind.
The going was a bit slower, and I wanted to wimp out. The invisible nature of this dynamic daemon put me on edge. Being a feather weight, the buffeting can send me across the lane or over the side without a warning. Still the air was good. The heart beating and the legs whirring.
At the shed, the electrolyte and bonk-breaker bar consumed. The toasty warm dry layers were donned. It was time to travel back. The pace was slow for downhill. We stopped at Newman’s for photos and at the First Saddle. John C. had excellent downhill form. His feet immediately locked into a nine and three o'clock position. Proper form and the best physics for the bike tire and the pavement. The outer leg on the curves straightened and then he returned to the three and nine stance.