Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Ride Report: La Ruta Loca Randonee (LRLR) 200km Brevet

photo: Geoff
La Ruta Loca Randonnee.  A mixed terrain brevet put on by the SF Randonneurs, and the brain child of Carlos Duque is a 200km brevet that has a significant amount of dirt (mostly fire roads) and elevation (around 12,500 ft).  She's a seductive beast.  

I forgot my camera on this ride, but this was the most beautiful brevet I've been on.  I've linked to other ride reports from the 2014 LRLR, so you can click those for more pics.  But I'll just leave you with two pics of my Bianchi post-LRLR.  I need to get a touring road bike so I can put on fatter wheels, so I can enjoy the descents, and with room for a fender so I can do the brevets in the wetter months.  The weather was perfect all day, and the ever interesting terrain made this ride quite memorable.  I wore my Japan jersey in honor of Japan playing in the World Cup vs Ivory Coast.  And I wore a camelback, as I thought my bottles would fall out of the cage on the rough terrain.  This was our first brevet where at the finish control we both said, "I'd do that again!"  Next year, I'd like to have a fatter bike, I'd take two tubes, plus a patch kit, a camera, some aleve, a pen, a route sheet, and apply sunscreen before mile 90.  I also think it'd be fun to stay as a family at the West Point Inn the night before, get up a bit early, meet the others at the start, then see the family at mile 100... but that'd be pretty tough.  

Here's my stava track.  I thought I had forgotten my USB battery pack until I got my flat, so this is the last 80+ miles.... good think I got a flat.  And a link to Sigman's track
Go here and click on anyone's first name that has a link for more trip reports!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Shasta! Hotlum-Wintun with Barrett, crib to crib - my 20th summit.

I always study the weather very carefully in May - June.  This is the prime time to make my annual pilgrimage to Shasta.  Shasta was the first real mountain I climbed, and I've been a changed man since.  The mountain has taught me quite a bit over the last 21 summits, and I'm always ready to learn more the next time.  One thing I have learned early on is that Shasta is highly condition dependent... so I try to pick a day where I know the conditions will be favorable.

So with a last minute invite, Barrett decided to join me.  I think this was already his 3rd or 4th time on the mountain this year... and he's going for 10 years of Turns All Year soon, so Barrett is no stranger to Shasta.  We met up at Granzella's to start carpooling in his Honda Element, which has a bed in the back.

We got to Brewer Creek TH as two other folks were just starting off.  Barrett and I downed a MRE each, which got my bowel moving.  Along with some chocolate covered espresso beans, that was our brekky.  This was my first MRE!  Pretty amazing how hot they gets  

Sunrise shots...
Barrett with McLoughlin behind him
Once we got on snow for a while we stashed our shoes and skins at around 9000 ft.  Barrett was feeling "slow" so we decided to take a quick 15 min nap at around 10,000 ft.  Barrett put his bag down, lay down and I think he was snoring with in 1 min.  That was clutch... where as I was waiting for Barrett before, he took off up the mountain like a Usain Bolt and I was barely following his boot tracks to keep up.  During this nap, I felt my camera fall out of my pocket... but dreamt that I picked it up and put it back in my pocket.  Which I didn't.... but we found it on the way down.

So these pics are taken with my phone... and Barrett, who was taking pics on his camera dropped his camera somewhere near here.  I didn't see or hear it fall down the mountain, but there was snow and ice falling down at every step so it could have easily happened.  Anyway... if anyone finds a waterprof canon camera, contact me, so I can get it back to Barrett.  
The Summit Pic.
At the summit we ran into a group of folks coming up Avy Gulch.  They were doing the climb for Big City Mountaineers, an organization I've volunteered with before!  Through a program called Summit for Someone they raise funds for the program.  Very cool.  

After recovering my camera... I started taking photos again.  
You could see 90% of our route from here
Barrett had ice cold PBRs ready for us at the car.  A quick celebration, then we drove to Lower McCloud Falls to jump off and cool off before our drive to Granzellas. I made it home in time to put Kai down for bed.  From crib to crib.... that was quite a fun trip!
Here's the strava link... the times are way off... I think we were going so slow that it didn't register.

Vid: Shasta (Hotlum-Wintun)

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Weekly Pano: Japan

I'm slowly going through all the pics from Japan... so you'll start seeing Japan posts sprinkled between my normal posts coming up.  We had a great time in Japan and it's nice to look back at all that we did there after totally leaving it alone for a while.  I took a few panos using my SLR, my canon, and my phone.  Enjoy!

At Haneda Airport... where airplane enthusiasts hang out listening to the radio from the control towers taking picture of commercial airplanes taking off and landing.  Also a good place for Kai to run around after a long flight.  
The Great Torii on Itsukushima, known as Miyajima the Shrine Island.  One of the top three scenic spots in Japan.  The Japanese love lists... there are top 3, top 50, top 100 everything... But Miyajima is a wonderful place to spend the day.
At the top of Ushita-San, one of the many hilltops that surround Hiroshima.  This one you can get to via trail from Becca's house.  
At the Hiroshima Sanfrecce soccer game
The scene at a rooftop soccer field in Tokyo
Kawagoe Aquatic Park
At the local department store rooftop amusement park.  Kai loved this place.  
Above Ikaho somewhere... or it might be Nikko...
Lake Haruna, above Ikaho Onsen.