Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Cyclocross Season!

My first out of town cyclocross race of the season was at the West Sacramento Grand Prix where I really enjoyed the fun course, the big deep fields, and the festival atmosphere. On the other hand I didn't enjoy the heat and my somewhat poor early season form.

The ups, downs and arounds on the sloped grass were a challenge.

Suffering a bit!
Finished 32 out of 42 in my field but was pretty close to the guys I normally battle with, so I wasn't really disappointed. Early days!

Next up was our local race out near the airport. This course will undoubtedly be the toughest I will face all year, but also one of the most fun.  I felt a lot better and was able to put in a steady, solid if not super fast effort. 

Dropping in!

Beautiful day!

Next I traveled south to the Ojai area to race Casitas Cross which is part of the SoCal Cross series. The course was super fun with lots of short ups and downs. After a slower than normal start I found a good rhythm and moved up to finish 5th out of 14. I was happy about that!

Pushing it up and over a berm. 


Looking forward to more as my fitness and prowess continue to improve!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Summer Cycling

After the Crusher I took a nice break to recharge and relax then, for August, I focused on volume with several great adventure rides.

I visited my mom down in Altadena and got in a terrific ride in the mountains there.

I rode up the Mt. Lowe fire road on my gravel bike.

A view down to Crescenta Valley.

Higher up looking south over Inspiration Point to the marine layer that had settled in the San Gabriel Valley.

Bear Canyon. A rugged, seldom visited drainage.

I got to ride through this picturesque tunnel as I neared the Mt Wilson Road.

Mt Markham

The distinct inversion looking east.  As I descended the Angeles Forest Highway a bit later the air was cooler and cooler!

The next day I went for an urban ride with Mary and our friend Saja.
Along the L.A. River.

Through Chinatown, Griffith Park and Silver Lake. Totally different kind of fun!

Happy to be home I did several sweet rides from the house. Just south.

Accidental photo!

Just north of town in Round Valley.

I also did a big ride north of Bridgeport. Up 395 early morning.

Then Birchim Flat Road paralleling the Walker River Canyon.

A quiet pavement stretch on Eastside Road just east of Colevillle.

Then up into the Sweetwater Range on Risue Road. Took a nice splash here in Desert Creek.

The high point of the day looking south to the high peaks of the Sweetwaters.

Finally popping out on Highway 338 near the Sweetwater Summit.  Super nice ride!

Topped if off with a soak at the Buckeye Hot Springs. The best pools are down by the creek.

Then a cold water soak in the creek below our camp.

A little smoke rolled in giving some extra color to the sunset.

Twilight view from our camp. So nice.

Now for a little rest and the transition to cyclocross season!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Crusher in the Tushar

For the fifth consecutive year we trucked out to the Tushar Mountains for the Crusher in the Tushar. 

After a lengthy drive we arrived at serene Kents Lake Campground.

Wonderful to be back!

The next day Mary took a spin on the paddleboard and later rode with my friend Bob and I.

At the start Chris and I were all smiles. It was already warm unlike past years.

Feeling confident!

Mary headed up to the campground and took these pictures of us passing by.

Rolling through the high meadows and forest. So beautiful. 

After enduring the searing heat in the valley around Junction City and Circleville the high country greeted us with lightning, thunder, hail and heavy rain. Drama! 

The scene at the finish line.

After the hail and rain let up I felt good and was able to ride hard to the finish. Joy!

Only slightly dazed!

Chris finished strong.

Brent got the best greeting from his family.

Bob was all smiles after finishing. He was 3rd place in the 60+ division. Fist bump!

Four finishers.

I have never felt better at the Crusher, but my time was slower and my placing lower than my previous efforts. Maybe I was having too much fun! I finished 29th of 96 in the 50-59 age group with a time of 6:01.

Bob, Mary and I took a pleasant recovery hike the next day. The lupine were amazing.

Good views here and there.

The body was pretty tired but it felt great to stroll through the woods.

Our destination. Rocky Lake. Lots of Elk signs here but no sightings.

The moon rising on our last night.

A fantastic trip!