Monday, March 30, 2015

Week 13

Date
March 29, 2015

Distance
127 miles

Strava Link
Week 13

Route Map/Profile

Weather

Ride Report 

I had a big week last week, so I took things pretty easy this week. I did two recovery rides plus one day off, and then on Thursday I was feeling frisky and did a short but solid ride. I went easy on Friday and then rode full gas up Geiger on Saturday. I wasn't too happy with the results up Geiger. I was hoping to be about a minute faster.

I expected to feel good on Sunday. With the warm weather it almost felt like summer out there, so I did a summer-like route. I started with Geiger Grade, then down 6 Mile Canyon and back up the truck route to Virginia City. After that I decided to climb Mt. Rose for the first time this year. I don't know what it was, but I didn't feel good at all on Mt. Rose. I'm not sure if I'm not 100% recovered from last week or if I'm simply not in good climbing shape yet this year. I felt more sore than normal after the ride, too. I'll take it easy again next week and see how I feel.

Meanwhile, there was a pretty good crowd at the lake and people were out there in bathing suits. It was another beautiful day for a ride.


Monday, March 23, 2015

Week 12

Date
March 20, 2015

Distance
122 miles

Strava Link
Week 12

Route Map/Profile

Weather

Ride Report 
I was able to squeeze in a 4-day Petoji training block. I was hoping to average 110 miles per day, but mostly by accident I ended up averaging 119 miles per day. On the first day the weather was great and I ended up riding 125 miles. This ride was the second day, and since the weather was still good (a little windy) I decided to climb US 50 for the first time this year and take a quick look at Lake Tahoe.


I know it's just a bad cell phone picture, but you can probably see that there's hardly any snow left. I was down in Markleeville yesterday and Monitor Pass is already open. I'm tempted to go ride it next weekend.

I ramped things down a little on the last two days with shorter rides and not as much climbing (Day 3, Day 4). That was more due to the wind than anything else. The wind hit me on day 3, but I started early on day 4 and missed the worst of it.

My legs felt pretty good. I'm starting to learn how to pace myself for these multiple long days. I just have to accept riding at a slightly slower pace. The biggest thing is to pace myself on the climbs. My instinct is to ride the climbs hard, but I was doing a pretty good job this week of riding the climbs at a more relaxed pace. I rode hard up a short climb on the 4th day and it took a lot more out of me than I expected. 4 days may sound like a lot, but it's not even 20% of what I'll need to do in August. Pacing will become even more important.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Week 11

Date
March 14, 2015

Distance
101 miles

Strava Link
Week 11

Route Map/Profile

Weather

Ride Report 

I had a 3-day weekend, so I couldn't resist going to Death Valley. My climbing needs some work, so I did some repeats on a nice quiet climb just outside the park. I ended up doing 7 hours worth of repeats, which was just short of 15,000 feet.






I took a long break (I actually fell asleep) and rode the extra miles to hit 100. I needed a ride like this because I'm definitely not in very good shape right now. I felt like I started the day at a conservative pace, but I seemed to hit a wall around the 4-hour mark. My legs were dead by the end of the day, but I went ahead and did 100 miles and 9,500 feet the next day, which ended up being at a snail's pace. But hey, 25,000 feet is a good weekend of training and there's never a bad time in Death Valley. It was the perfect time of year to be there- flowers were blooming and the temperatures were warm but not quite hot yet.

I'm off Thursday and Friday, so I'm going to do a 4-day block of Petoji training from Thursday-Sunday. I'm hoping to average 110/day for those 4 days.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Week 10

Date
March 7, 2015

Distance
102 miles

Strava Link
Week 10

Route Map/Profile

Weather

Ride Report 

What a difference a week makes. The temperature jumped about 25 degrees and the weather was fantastic. I took advantage of the warm, sunny skies and did a little climbing. I did 2 laps of Six Mile Canyon plus the Virginia City Truck Route.

Unfortunately, NV 342 is closed until summer and all traffic is being diverted to NV 341 (the truck route). This is bad news because (a) 342 has a nice climb with a steep section that makes for a good test and (b) 341 used to be a super quiet road, but now it has more traffic. 341 is probably my favorite descent in the area, and the low traffic was one of the main reasons why.






Next week could be a big one. Stay tuned.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Week 9

Date
March 1, 2015

Distance
105 miles

Strava Link
Week 9

Route Map/Profile

Weather

Ride Report 

Saturday was snowy, but the roads were fine by Sunday. I did a simple out-and-back on US 50 just to be sure that I'd have a clear road to ride on the whole way. By the end of the day the snow was only in the mountains.



Monday, February 23, 2015

Week 8

Date
February 21, 2015

Distance
101 miles

Strava Link
Week 8

Route Map/Profile
Weather

Ride Report 

Pyramid Lake


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Week 7

Date
February 15, 2015

Distance
101 miles

Strava Link
Part 1 and Part 2

Route Map/Profile
Part 1

Part 2

Weather

Ride Report 

I took advantage of the long President's Day weekend and headed out to the coast to visit Eureka, CA and Redwood National Park. Saturday was spent exploring the park and Sunday was spent riding. The route was pretty simple- starting at the Oregon border and heading south on 101 to Eureka. I took a few detours from 101 but these were all part of the Pacific Coast Bike Route, which has very good signage on this portion of the route.

The day started off on the wrong foot. My Garmin wasn't booting up and I couldn't get it to connect to my computer or anything. The screen was stuck on "loading profiles" and restarting it wasn't fixing the problem. I suppose there's never a convenient time for your Garmin to fail, but this seemed like particularly bad timing. I didn't have time to research the problem, I stupidly left my backup GPS at home, and there's no way my phone battery was going to last the entire ride. I got frustrated, decided to run the phone app for as long as I could and started riding.

As I was riding I started to realize the absurdity of the situation. Here I was in one of the most beautiful places in the country riding my bike in nearly perfect weather and I was upset about a stupid little bike computer. Why? What was I riding for, to have fun out there or to rack up my pathetic little numbers on Strava? Perhaps my Garmin was teaching me an important lesson.

After about an hour the Garmin decided to power up, though it took a lot longer than normal to find a satellite. Once it found a satellite everything seemed to be OK. It made it through the rest of the ride and the file uploaded to Strava correctly. I'm a little worried that this might be the start of other problems with the unit, but hopefully not.

Anyway, 101 is a beautiful place to ride. I got super lucky with the weather. There was hardly any fog at all and the wind was very light. This route had a little bit of everything. There were flat sections, a few shorter climbs, some scenic riding along the coast, and a short ride through a Redwood forest.




As always, the ride was even more beautiful than the photos suggest. There are also a lot of other great routes in the area. The Tour of the Unknown Coast is worth looking into, and 299 from Eureka to Redding looks like it would be a ton of fun to ride. I had a great weekend here but could easily spend a week or more in the area.