Sunday, September 25, 2016

2016 Diablo Challenge Volunteer

This is the 8th time in 10 years I've volunteered for this event.
Check out these blog post links:

  1. 2007
  2. 2008
  3. 2009
  4. 2010
  5. 2013
  6. 2014
  7. 2015
  8. 2016

Things went pretty smoothly except they moved registration to the parking lot instead of the start line, so people were showing up late to the Athenian School area.  Also since the forecast was for warm weather, fewer riders opted to have warm clothes when they got to the top, so there weren't nearly as many backpacks as usual.  That meant there was kind of a last-minute rush to get things in my truck, but there weren't all that many things to load anyway.

The other change was at the Lower Lot there were chairs and event-type bike parking so the organization at the top was superb... much nicer than people just laying their bikes everywhere like in previous years.

Blog Reader Rick pulled off a PB of 55m04s... which is about my time to The Junction yesterday... of course The Challenge goes up The Easy Side.

Click below for fast motion finish line action!

Where is everybody?

Bay Area Cycling Legend Chuck Tyler - voice of the Start Line

I forget this guy's name
CHARLEY - Thanks Christine!
 but he's a manufacturer's rep
for several bicycle companies and has some great stories.

John Slawta of Landshark fame, and Jenny Slawta of female 
Diablo Challenge Champion fame.
They come every year with their two young sons 

who are both incredible riders too.

Diablo Daughter enjoys the vegan fig bar of volunteerism.

Uber legend Bob Roll acting like a normal guy.

Bobke tells some stories on stage.

Blah blah safety... OK go.

Your humble blogger and his fan kit.

Public Service Announcement

The awesome ladies of Diablo Multisport Connection and I would like you to know about this event:

2016 DMC Promo from Diablo Scott on Vimeo.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

2016 SMR 33

Cool this morning but forecast was for HOT.

JB demonstrates his method for max speed through The Dips

Check out that sseatpost - looks like you could use it to chop onions.

"I'm not tired... I just needed to adjust my arm warmers"

Hey, if your Friday morning is free -
you should consider going to the Safety Celebration.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

2016 WNR 28

I usually commute by bike to work.  When I do drive in for whatever reason I find myself hating traffic and car culture.  Watch a few minutes of this video of a street corner in the Netherlands to see just how different a transportation system can be.  At first it all looks like chaos, but it works just fine.

Nice crowd tonight.  Tanner came too with a bunch of her AIDS ride buddies.

Wildlife Encounter:  Turkeys and deer

Tarantula Tally:  Two crawlers.

Before tonight's ride I was thinking it may be the last WNR of the season.  At the end of tonight's ride I had confirmed it.  The end of a great season.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

2016 SMR 32

Today was the Veterans Victory Velo ride, lots of riders coming down about the time we got up around the Ranches.

Kind of warm too... very nice riding weather.

Elmar showed up at the Junction, then we all went to Summit together.

Share the road bikes painted on the pavement.  Cool

Amsterdam Cycling jersey... cool.

There were gazillions of riders all over the Mountain while we were going down.

Welcome home committee.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

2016 WNR 27

Boy, looks and smells like the end of the season.

Colin made a move at the Gate and I went with him.  He's young and strong but he didn't look very smooth so I thought he might fade... he did but it wasn't until after Chiainbuster.  Then I kept going and had my best time of the year.

I had an opportunity to use the new Eagle Scout bicycle tool chest at the Junction - needed to bump up the pressure on my rear tire, but the pump that was in there didn't work... the chuck wouldn't hold on to my valve and the air leaked out and it appeared to still have a Schraeder fitting in it under the presta seal... weird.

Tarantula Tally:  I lost count there were so many.  This guy at Junction was real popular though.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

2016 SMR 31

Wildlife Encounter:  turkeys and deer everywhere, and one bunny

This deer really startled us!

Near Diablo Ranch we could hear amplified piano music - probably setting up for a wedding but there were no signs.  We joked that we could tell first-timers that they always play for us.

Scary close call on Summit Road:  stupid driver on the wrong side of the road around a blind turn passing us and two riders coming down - the place where the flashing speed detector is.

Near the Summit, JB inhaled some water from his bottle and coughed for a mile, he thought he might have to stop and puke but he recovered.

Oh look, they added a flashing speed detector at the top of The Bump too.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

2016 WNR 26

Wow, twenty-six Wednesday night rides.  It's been a good summer... and it's almost over... MAYBE three more.

It was hot today, but it was starting to cool down by the time we got started.  There was a fire somewhere on the east side of The Mountain though and the air quality was affected.

New rider from work came - she looks like an experienced rider but hasn't done a lot of extended climbing - didn't make it to Junction but said she had fun.  She also has Sidi shoes and a jersey from a charity ride for credentials.

Wildlife Encounter:  deer all over the place.

Tarantula Tally:  one crawler at Moss Landing on the way down.  Kind of lower than I usually see them.

Since I replaced my brake cables my bike hasn't seemed quite right - maybe I'm overly aware or maybe I messed something up... probably time for a wheel truing and complete overhaul... maybe after the last WNR of the year... or maybe when I switch to the foul-weather bike for the season.

Elmar said once that he's sometimes surprised at his Junction time... like he thought he was going fast but had a slow time, or vice versa.  I told him I'm never surprised because I'm always checking at the splits and estimating my final result.  Today when we got to the Upper Washout, we were together and I said "Looks like another 49".  Today's Junction time:  48m58s.

The sun is setting on the Wednesday Night Rides.

Cycling Mount Diablo

Saturday, September 03, 2016

2016 SMR 30

First ride of 2016 September.  Cool and windy.  I wore a jacket.

KOOKY Coincidence:  On the way out to The Mountain, waiting for the green light to cross Ygnacio Valley Road, I see a guy in hospital scrubs coming from the Doctor's Park office building; I figure he's a doctor or something just getting off work.  Then he crosses Bancroft against the light, then he crosses Ygnacio coming toward me not only against the light but dodging the traffic, not in a crosswalk and I don't know what to think.  Then he comes up to me and asks me to call an ambulance for him - and I wonder if there was a car crash over there somewhere.  And he says "I'm really afraid someone might try to hurt me."  Know I have him pegged as a kook.  He's wearing shower shoes and carrying a plastic garbage bag with a blanket and a big wooden rosary.  I asked him if he'd rather I call the police and he said no, but maybe I could just walk to the hospital with him and I said no.  I don't want to leave a paranoid kook alone and afraid, but I'm running late for 2016SMR30.  So as I'm fumbling with my phone to call an ambulance, a car pulls up to the red light (about the third cycle of signals since I've been there now) and a woman rolls down her window and the kook asks her for a ride to the hospital and she agrees to do it.  So he got in the car and she drove away and I see the kook's blanket sticking out from the closed door, dragging on the pavement as they pull away.

Kind of foggy until we got up past Juniper.

Part of the safety improvements include all-way STOP signs at Juniper and Junction, so now you'll have to stop even on the way down.  They're covered up with black plastic right now, but should be soon.

I knew this guy was going to pass me on The Wall,
so I focused on riding a straight line and not looking like a Fred.

Wildlife Encounter:  deer

Most recumbent people I know have some kind of physical issue
that makes regular bikes hard to ride, but this guy looked like
he just loves the recliners - fast and high tech.