Saturday, January 5, 2013

8th Annual Metric Century Ride

Elegant hunk 'o lugged steel on Ediz Hook (one of the popular stops on the ride)

Details and route are identical to last year (see older posts, below).  The date of this year's ride is
Saturday, May 4,  2019
with Sunday May 5 the rainout/alternate date.  No registration fee, no support, no swag, just some folks out for a nice long ride, at a fairly leisurely pace.

We plan on assembling at the Downtown Hotel lot at 9-9:30am, and launch at 9:31am.  Last year we finished the ride in about 6:00, with a stop for ice cream at Granny's Cafe and a some exploring around Camp Hayden State Park.  This year we hope to have a proper picnic at Camp Hayden, about 2/3 of the way through the ride, if the weather is nice.  Anybody who would like to drive a pot-luck picnic lunch out there for us riders is encouraged to step up and volunteer.  Call Tim at the Downtown Hotel (link below).

Casual beer and snacks reception at the hotel after the ride, around 4pm probably?

Who's Invited?   Anyone who thinks riding 100km over various multiple use paths (MUPs), city streets, country lanes, dirt roads and highways is a good way to spend a day.   The hills in the early part of the ride are a grind, but we make up for it by taking it easy on the rest of the ride.  This is not a race-pace ride.  We stop a lot for snacks and photos in opportune spots.

If you want to let us know you're coming, it's helpful for us to plan on how much food and drink to order for the post-ride nosh.  Leave a comment below or call Tim at the hotel link below.

Coming from out of town?  Check for a full listing of available area lodgings.  The ride will start from the lot of The Downtown Hotel which is offering $5 discount for riders on May 4, 5, & 6 or two nights for the price of one, any room.   Regular room rates start at $45/night (Cheap!).

Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

100km Scenic Loop in the Port Angeles area

(Port Angeles)
In a nutshell, this ride starts in downtown Port Angeles near the start of the Olympic discovery Trail, follows that for a mile, climbs uptown past Peninsula College, to the Olympic National Park visitors center, long climb up to Heart o' The Hills and Lake Dawn, descends (on gravel) via Little River Road to Black Diamond Road, descends westward further )on chipseal) to Olympic Hot Springs Road and Hwy 101, continues a gradual ascent to north western end of Lake Crescent, heads north (on gravel) down to Hwy 112, heading flat east to Joyce, descends to sea level at Crescent Bay and Salt Creek Recreation Area, gradually climbs back up to Hwy 112, going east to Elwha River Road and the new Elwha River Bridge, takes a nice flat MUP back to the western neighborhoods of Port Angeles, descends down to Ediz Hook and then back to downtown.  (See maps; two posts down).

The route itself measures just a hair under 100km with ~2700 ft climbing.  With small incidental side trips along the way, most riders will put in a few extra km.  (You can unwind with a few laps around the block if your odometer says you haven't done the full century yet.)

There are a good number of conveniently spaced cafes and stores along the way where you can get food and liquids, so if you don't feel like it, you don't need to pack much at all on this trip.

PLEASE NOTE:  Because this route involves about 9 miles of gravel roads and paths, appropriate tires for that kind of surface are recommended.  I've ridden those sections on a standard steel road bike with 700x28c tires pumped up to about 90psi and got through the dirt road sections fine (with some caution) but you have to pick your way through it carefully in some short sections.   Anything but real hard, skinny racing tires should be be OK.

NEW FOR 2018/9:  An alternate first leg will be used due to some people not being too crazy about the that first 7 miles with 2000 ft of climbing.  The alternate first leg is a lot less climbing than the original first leg and cuts a few miles off as well.  In addition to this, if you're still not sure you can go the whole distance, there's plenty of "bailout" places along the route where you can just turn around and ride back to town.  Unless everyone is feeling guns-ho, we'll split into two groups at the start, with a leader who knows the way for each route.

Legal Disclaimer

This is a not a race, but rather a casual ride, thought up by a few local cycling enthusiasts, with no support, no official organization, no entry fee or prizes, and if you choose to participate, you do so at entirely your own risk and responsibility.

(Dude.  Um... helmet?)
Obviously, if you're the sort of person who likes to ride 100km in one day, you are already well aware that riding a bicycle on public roads is an inherently risky activity which may result in injury or death at any time.

Add to that the mix of gravel roads with steep descents, riding in groups, riding in places you might encounter dangerous wildlife, riding on rough or twisty roads sometimes with little or no shoulder, and you may consider this ride even more inherently dangerous than your average road riding.  And you'd probably be right.

All the usual rules apply:  ride as safely as possible with the protective gear of your choice,  assume you appear invisible to cars, trucks and pedestrians, assume you appear delicious to bears and cougars, be sure to carry a flat kit or ride closely with someone who does, bring your phone so you can contact help in an emergency, bring some money to buy food and liquids along the route, or pack plenty on your own.

The Downtown Hotel is NOT in any way, shape or form a sponsor of this ride, but is merely offering, for an annual group ride, its parking lot as a starting point and its lobby as a gathering point for a casual after-ride social.   The Downtown Hotel accepts no liability or responsibility for accidents, injuries or any unpleasantness that may occur to any participating riders.   Each rider is solely responsible for their own safety and well-being.

Here's a route map for this ride

We'll have at least one person very familiar with this route riding along on the day of the ride.  But for people who want to ride it another time, or just want to check it out, I've mapped the route of this ride  here on Veloroutes (Thanks, Matt!)  And if that one loads too slowly, here is the same route on Bikelydotcom.
(Low quality screenshot)

If you're riding this route by yourself and have never done it before, both of these are viewable on your internet-capable smartphone or tablet, or you really want, you can print them out in sections at whatever level of zoom you like if you have to have it on paper.  Blog entries below have the route broken into sections, with some pictures of landmarks and descriptions of the turns of the route, which may also be helpful.

That's the overview.  If you want the leg-by-leg tour of the whole route, keep reading...

Monday, April 16, 2012

Start: Hotel Parking Lot to old Rayonier Mill Site

(Coho ferry terminal)

To begin our ride, at 9am we exit the Downtown Hotel parking lot (across the street from the Cornerhouse Restaurant/Downtown Hotel, next door to the Chase Bank building) and go left to the Coho Ferry dock then right (Railroad Ave.) to the Red Lion Inn, in front of which begins the Waterfront Trail/Olympic Discovery trail.

We'll be following it for only about a mile, a nice, flat, stretch-your-legs kind of roll out for a few minutes before we start to climb.

Old Rayonier Mill Site To National Park Visitor's Center

If 1.3 miles of flat isn't enough to get your legs warmed up, you'll get that on some short, sharp climbs in the next mile, followed by a few blocks of flat on your way to the Olympic National Park visitors center..
(Your first taste of seven miles of steady climbing)

<- From the old mill parking lot, go up that steep driveway at the gate (Ennis Street) and through a couple stoplights and then climb some more, going left on 5th Street and a quick right (on Ennis, once again) up to Peninsula College.
(Peninsula College)

These are the steepest grades you'll face today. Definitely the steepest. But not the longest. Not by a longshot.

We'll do a little zig-zagging through the neighborhood flats here, so we don't prematurely lose our freshly earned altitude: right on Lauridsen Blvd in front of the college, one block then left on Liberty for one block, past the college parking lot, Right on Park, one or two blocks to a left on Porter one or two blocks to right on Grant Ave which after one block dumps us into the Olympic National Park Visitor's Center loop driveway.
(We've been riding for like, 20 minutes. Can't we stop and have a picnic or something?)

Take drink from the drinking fountain. Pick up a complimentary Olympic Park Map. See the stuffed animals inside. Give directions to an Asian tourist, bow politely, smile.

(Here's your elevation profile for this short leg.)

Olympic National Park Visitor's Center to Lake Dawn

Exit the National Park Visitor's Center lot, go right up the hill and an immediate right at the Y in the road.

Here's where the real climbing starts:  you're beginning at about 300 feet elevation and about 4 miles later you are at about 2000 feet. Pace yourself.

(Believe it or not, that overpass goes to a logging road.) 
A hopeful landmark; known to the locals as Walking Horse Hill Overpass, once you get about another mile past this spot, the climb levels off considerably and and you realize you've made it. The rest of the ride is relatively flat.

Take a right on Lake Dawn Road,
(Lake Dawn road.  Tahoe meets Appalachia.)
and enjoy a quick leisurely pedal through our own miniature version local of some backroad Lake Tahoe neighborhood, with the A-frame cabins and the Ski-Doo parked under the deck, kayaks and firewood scattered all about, and in about 0.3 miles fade right onto Little River Road, for some fun back country dirt road descending. Yee-Haw.

Here's the elevation profile for what you just climbed (that last mile was pretty soft, admit it):