Saturday, August 31, 2013

2013 SMR 27

Four Summit Saturdays in a row!

JB was on-board for a Summit ride yesterday so we planned on 3500 feet of slow and steady climbing and arriving at the Wall with something left in the legs.

Blog Reader Mike posted a photo of himself in a Grateful Dead jersey last week, so I obviously assumed this was he - but astoundingly it was not, and there are two such jerseys on the Mountain.

On the Bump, we happened upon Diablo Regular Ernie - he has a unique climbing style incorporating low cadence in a big gear out of the saddle.  He said he has high blood pressure and spinning makes his heart rate too high.

We also discussed various wildlife and what it would be like to collide with them.  We agreed that bucks and bulls would be the worst, but turkeys would be more likely.

Wildlife Encounter:  turkeys
Tarantula Tally:  one cadaver

Few things enhance one's studliness quotient more than passing another rider on the Summit Wall.

From the Summit we looked for smoke from the Yosemite rim fire - it was sure hazy over in that direction, but nothing we could point to and say "that's it".

Someone pointed out to me last week that there was a sequence of dots painted on the Wall, and he thought they may have been some kind of indicator for the cyclists.  Hard to believe that since 1) I hadn't noticed them, and 2) there's no indication of what they indicate.  They do seem to be kind of evenly spaced, and maybe they'll help you gauge your climb... anyway, here they are:

The Summit Wall is 270 meters from the barrier gate to 
the "DO NOT ENTER" sign (facing the other way) at the top.

Four dots at 55 meters

Three dots at 110 meters

Two dots at 160 meters.

One dot at 220 meters.

270 meters from the barrier gate.

The Facebook page of the Amgen Tour of California asked if the fans thought Leopold Konig's win on the Summit of Mount Diablo helped prepare him for his summit finish win in the Vuelta this week... so I posted this video to show what it looks like to weekend warriors.

Not K├Ânig from Diablo Scott on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

2013 WNR 18

Me, JB, Seppi, and Charlie.

JB still hasn't fixed his Della Santa.  Seppi's getting married next weekend... this was his last ride as a single man.

Beautiful night and the sun is getting really low.

Tarantula Tally:  one

Note LOOOOOOOONG shadows.

JB gapped me after the Bump and I just wasn't feeling like a big effort to chase him down... but when I started smelling the finish line I decided I wanted it.

Nice to see that the Contour web site still allows video hosting even though they're out of business... wonder who's in charge of that?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

2013 SMR 26

Three summit Saturdays in a row!
JB didn't show so I put the rock on the post and went.
Roadkill Report:  snake.
Way cooler and windier than late August should be, but I'm not complaining.
Didn't waste any time at Junction, just finished one bottle and started up Summit Road.
I've been trying to memorize the names of the picnic areas and things on Summit Road - here's what I remember I think - starting from Junction:
1.  Canyon Nook Picnic Area on the left
2.  Sunset Picnic Area (lower entrance) on the right
3.  Summit Trail / Hotel Road on the left
4.  Sunset Picnic Area (upper entrance) on the right
5.  Livermore Overlook on the right
6.  Rocky Point picnic area
7.  Toyon
8.  The Pines
9.  Blue Oak
10. Oak something
11. Grapevine (anti-gravity)
12. Juniper
13. Muir
14. Water tank
15. Some trail head
16. Devil's Elbow

Saw one old guy on a classic Masi with a criterium cassette doing hill repeats... chapeau.

I finally decided to trim my helmet straps.  Should've done it a long time ago.

Way too much strap flopping around there.

Cut them to length and burn the ends to prevent unravelling.

Neat and trim - and lighter to boot!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

2013 WNR 17

Me and Ed and Ted tonight.  Not a lot of riders on The Mountain... should be more people training for The Challenge.  Fire danger is high due to weather and recent heat lightning, but not high enough to close the Park.  I'm thinking there's about six more Wednesday Night Rides this year before Daylight Wasting Time begins.

Tarantula Tally:  One crawler

Wildlife Encounter:  Flock of turkeys  -  I looked it up, it's only a "rafter" of turkeys if they're the domesticated kind of turkeys... "flock" is the proper collective noun for the vicious Jurassic beasts on Diablo. 

Johnson County Jason says "hi" on his way by.

Dirt d'Huez is d'eeply embedded on d'Ablo 

These two guys get the "most fluorescent" trophy.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

2013 SMR 25

Didn't feel great this morning, but got better as the elevation got higher.

JB had been on jury duty through last night so we discussed issues with the legal system.

At the Junction, these two guys showed up with some cool looking custom bikes.  We'd never heard of them before so I Googled the brand - here you go:  Zanconato.  One of them had a power meter crank too.

Not sure if he knew he was posing right in front of my bike cam.

Here's that same photog from last week, scoping out the
perfect angle and equipment for the Challenge.
He remembered me but didn't say if he was posting
on-line somewhere.

This guy had a nice Trek with Di2 and all internal wiring.
Some kind of construction going on in the Lower Parking Lot -
more than just re-paving it seems.

 I almost always stop at the Lower Parking Lot before I go up the Summit Wall.  This gives me an opportunity to get some recovery, slam down a HammerGel, and watch for cars coming up from below.  From here you can see down to Devil's Elbow and plan your start so that no cars will come up behind you on the Wall...  see video below.

Dancing up The Wall from Diablo Scott on Vimeo.

This is the sign on the left side of the stairs going up
to the (currently closed) observation deck.  It makes
reference to the Miwok creation myth that says
Mount Diablo was the beginning of it all.

This is the sign on the right side of the stairway
going up to the observation deck.  Mount Diablo has been a
State Park since 1921, but it's a lot bigger now
than it was back then.  Before they put this sign up in 1982,
there was just an elevation sign, like the one at the top of the wall.
The actual peak of the Mountain is inside the museum.

It almost looks like the very same sign, but not quite.
~1975  Single post attachment, capital T in FT

Today  Dual post attachment, small T in Ft

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

2013 WNR 16 Dirt d'Huez!

Charlie brought his bag of dirt from Alpe d'Huez so we could have a little ceremony today and we can ALL say we've ridden our bikes on the second most famous mountain in the bicycle world.

Wildlife Encounter: Turkeys. Also, there was a really big swarm of buzzards over the loading dock area.

Tarantula Tally: One (healthy and on the move)

Charlie forgot his cycling shoes,
hazzah to him for riding in his work shoes!

Note Alpe d'Huez souvenir jersey.  It says "21 VIRAGES"
and has a map of all the switchbacks.

There's what it looks like, cycling fans.

Hmmmm, where should we sprinkle it?

Dirt d'Huez from Diablo Scott on Vimeo.

Video d'Huez: Clicuez ici s'il vous plait

Saturday, August 10, 2013

2013 SMR 24

On the way to the Gate as usual, running a little bit late, I got about a half mile from home and saw my reflection in a car window and noticed that I didn't have my helmet on.  So after returning to fetch it, I was now running quite a bit late.  Got to the Gate at about 8:05 and no rock and no JB so I waited around for about five minutes and then put my own rock on the post.  I was surprised to catch up to JB somewhere and he said he just forgot but he's been pretty sick with a respiratory thing so he wasn't moving too fast.  Also he's replacing some BB parts on his Della Santa so he was riding his Atlantis - not that he'd ever use that as an excuse for being slow, but of course it is.

He was done and then I went up to Summit.

Had some troubles with my Contour video camera... interesting that they went out of business this week:

 Came up to this guy near Surface of Mars:  he said he was the official photographer for the Diablo Challenge and was getting his setup worked out.  Watch for him (and practice your pose) about 1.25 miles above Junction.  BTW, I'll be volunteering again, so come say hi at the start or finish.

Dumbassery on the Mountain is of course, not limited to drivers of motor vehicles - refer to below video:

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

2013 WNR 15

Kevin and Evan, Charlie and Seppi, and yours truly tonight.

Charlie talked about riding Alpe d'Huez (it's hard), the Tour (it's exciting and crowded), and buying Alpe d'Huez jerseys on top of the mountain (they have real bike shops up there in a ski village).  He bought the first one he saw, but then liked the second one better (all the hairpins on a map) so he bought that one as well; he says he'll wear one of them next week.  He also brought a bag of Alpe d'Huez dirt to sprinkle on Diablo somewhere so it'll be kind of like we're all riding the Alpe too.


 Diablo shoutout to Pumpkin Jay descending on the orange bike, who just returned from a Flandrian Pilgrimmage to all the places I'd go if I could too.  No word on any Flemish dirt to sprinkle.

Saturday, August 03, 2013

2013 SMR 23

JB was sick and I hadn't signed up for the Marin Century, so I did a late and lazy ride to Muir Picnic Area.  

Metromint guy with the deepest rims I've ever seen on
the Mountain forces me to the inside around Chainbuster.
Then he got to the Junction and about hurled.

Getting passed was a regular thing this morning.

Getting passed was a regular thing this morning.
Getting passed was a regular thing this morning.

Getting passed was a regular thing this morning.

For safety reasons, I always assume there's a moron in the
wrong lane around every blind corner... my assumption is correct
often enough to continue assuming that.