Everest Challenge in ONE day….


For years I have had this crazy idea of doing all six climbs (29,000 feet of climbing) in the Everest Challenge stage race in ONE day.  It is the California/Nevada state climbing championship held over two days.  The first day has three climbs with 15,500 feet of gain and then another 13,500 feet of gain over three climbs on the second day.  The event is held in late September and directed by my friend Steve Barnes.  I would like to know if anyone has heard of a rider doing all six climbs in one sitting.  Please ask your friends if they have heard of anyone doing all six climbs in one day and then report back here and comment on my blog.

Here are the graphs for the two days of climbing.

Event Website — Everest Challenge

Everest Challenge 29,000 feet of climbing…Done!


Hello everyone and thank you for checking in on my blog.  I am tired and not really in the mood for a long race report so I’ll be brief.  I completed my third Everest Challenge on Sunday 9/26/10.  I suffered in the heat.  On both days I had great climbs on climb #1 and climb #2 but then the heat would be there for climb #3.  It was not my worst showing but I should have done much better.  I expected to do much better.

Today is Monday 9/27/10 and I am in full recovery mode as I am racing the Furnace Creek 508 in less than a week.  Most of you think I’m crazy for doing Everest Challenge and the Furnace Creek 508 in a week’s time.  Well I probably am but…I just want to test my limits.  People ask me why I do ultras…it’s because I want to test the limits of human endurance…my limits.  I’m not interested in placing high.  I’m interested in finding out where is my low.  Where is the bottom?  Where is the point where I say “Man this is it …you’re broken.”

THE WEAPON

Felt F2 with Di2, SRM Dura-Ace 7900 Wireless Power Meter Crankset 53/39, Cassette 11-28, Zipp Zed Tech 2, PRO Turnix Saddle and Carbon Vibe Stem.


 

My unofficial time is 15:23.  Below are the elevation charts.  When the official results are posted  I’ll post a race report.  I am curious to see how many DNF’s and No Shows on day two.  Thank you for tuning in.

I want to thank Infinit Nutrition for supporting me in my Epic Adventures.  Please look into customizable nutrition to help you perform better.  I used Infinit Nutrition on Everest Challenge and will use it on the Furnace Creek 508!

Day one of Everest Challenge

Day 2 of Everest Challenge

Everest Challenge Recon- Continued


On Thursday 9/16 I climbed Mosquito Flat.  I had a better day than I did two weeks ago on 9/2.  Below you will see the graphs and data for both days.  The first set is from 9/2 and the next set from 9/16.

Most notable improvements were:

5 minutes reduction in time (2:32 to 2:27)

10 watt increase in Normalized Power (189 watts to 199 watts)

.2 increase in w/kg (2.7 to 2.9 w/kg)

9 bpm increase in intensity (163 bpm to 172 bpm)

4% increase in Intensity Factor (68% to 72%)

5 rpm increase in Average Cadence (68 rpm to 73 rpm)

.3 mph increase in Average Speed (9.0 mph to 9.3 mph)

Crank Torque was reduced by 3 lb-in (which is also reflected in higher average cadence)

23 miles in a loooong way to climb and be able to sustain high power output– at least for this mere mortal.  But I’m satisfied with the results and I feel my form continuing to build.  I’m still undecided whether I will be riding Everest Challenge.  In the days proceeding EC I will be at Interbike in Las Vegas and on my feet for many hours.  I won’t have the luxury of traditional rest, hydration and home cooked meals.  So we’ll see….

Thank you for reading my blog please pass it on to your friends.

Everest Challenge Training Flashback– 2006


It occurred to me today that before learning about John Summerson’s list of the toughest climbs in California I would just go out and do repeats on Palomar Mountain.  Palomar ranks 9th on the most difficult climbs in California and 10th in the country!  How convenient to have such a storied climb in my backyard — San Diego.  But since learning about his book I have made the effort on several trips to climb the hardest climbs in California.  Yesterday I climbed Mosquito Flat and another climb Pine Creek.  Today I climbed Onion Valley Road.  I PR’d Mosquito Flat yesterday and Onion Valley Road today — check back for a ride report. 

The graph above was back in 2006 when I was getting ready for my first Everest Challenge.  The first day of the race has over 15,000 feet of gain with little flat (read recovery) in between the climbs.  So why not do repeats and get the same cumulative gain with short recovery?  Made sense to me and so I embarked on FOUR REPEATS ON PALOMAR MOUNTAIN.

To say this was a hard day on the bike is an understatement but mentally and physically I was more than ready to take up the challenge of the toughest two day stage race.  The 100F temperature also played a big factor in my overall fatigue.  In case you’re wondering I kept my climbing repeats between 1 hour 20minutes and 1 hour 30 minutes.  By the third descent I could have descended the upper half blindfolded 🙂    The fourth climb was a  bear.  The fourth descent was the sweetest!! 

Most Difficult Climbs:

1) Onion Valley —               DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) Horseshoe Meadows — DONE 6/10/10!!
3) White Mountain–          DONE as part of Everest Challenge Stage Race
4) Sherman Pass–             DONE 6/24/10!!
5) Whitney Portal —         DONE 6/10/10!!
6) Mount Baldy–               DONE- too many times to mention
7) Shirley Meadows–        DONE 6/24/10!!
8) South Lake–                  DONE as part of Everest Challenge Stage Race
9) Mount Palomar–           DONE 6/06/10!!
10) Mosquito Flat–           DONE 09/02/10!!

Greatest Elevation Gained:

1) Horseshoe Meadows – 6,234 feet– DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) White Mountain – 6,204 feet
3) 190 – 6,199 feet
4) J21/245/180 – 5,750 feet
5) Mosquito Flat – 5,548 feet  DONE 9/-2/10
6) Dantes View – 5,475 feet
7) South Lake – 5,445 feet
8) Sherman Pass – 5,316 feet– DONE 6/24/10!!
9) Emigrant Pass – 5,309 feet
10) Onion Valley – 5,169 feet DONE 6/10/10!!

Highest Elevation Attained:

1) Mosquito Flat – 10,220 feet- DONE 9/02/10
2) White Mountain – 10,152 feet
3) Horseshoe Meadows – 10,034 feet DONE 6/10/10!!
4) Tioga Pass – 9,945 feet
5) South Lake – 9,852 feet
6) Sonora Pass – 9,624 feet
7) Kaiser Pass – 9,184 feet
8) Onion Valley – 9,163 feet — DONE 6/10/10!!
9) Lake Sabrina – 9,141 feet
10) Sherman Pass – 9,126 feet– DONE 6/24/10!!

Additionally, here is the list of the 10 toughest climbs in the US.

Below is a list of some of the top cycling climb bike rides that are listed in the bookBest Cycling Climbs In The US. The book lists the 100 toughest USA road bike climbs from 1 to 100.

  1. Mt Washington, NH
  2. Haleakala, HI
  3. Onion Valley, CA
  4. Horseshoe Meadows, CA
  5. Mt. Equinox, VT
  6. White MTN, CA
  7. Mt. Baldy, CA
  8. Mt Graham, AZ
  9. Mt. Lemmon, AZ
  10. Palomar Mountain, CA

Thank you for reading my blog.  Please pass it on to your friends.  

Everest Challenge Course Recon- Glacier Lodge & White Mountain


10,000 feet of gain in just 44 miles!!

I haven’t decided whether I will be “racing” Everest Challenge this year.  It is only one week before my goal event, the Furnace Creek 508. But since I was spending the night in Lone Pine I thought I might as well make the short 40 mile drive up to Big Pine and do some more climbing.  Yesterday I climbed Shirley Meadows and Sherman Pass which were the only two climbs I hadn’t done on the Top 10 Toughest Climbs in California.

Today’s climbs were Glacier Lodge and Ancient Bristlecone.  They are climb #1 and Climb #3 on the second day of Everest Challenge.  I skipped Climb #2 Death Valley Road for two reasons:

1. it isn’t that exciting to me

2.  I was riding solo and didn’t want to double back one extra time to refuel.

GLACIER LODGE

10 miles 4,000 feet of gain

I parked at the base of the Glacier Lodge climb.  I rode up the 10 + mile climb, warming up along the way.  The grades were as steep as I remembered them nothing had changed. 😦  I rode the climb at tempo and felt strong at times and not so strong at other times.  I think if this climb was another mile or two in length it might make the Top 10 list for California.  As such it is only 9 miles of hard climbing. 😉

Glacier Lodge Climb

4,000 feet of gain in 10 miles!

Glacier Lodge percent of grade graph

Glacier Lodge Climb data from Garmin Training Center

ANCIENT BRISTLECONE

6,243 feet of gain in 20 miles

Max elevation 10,100 feet

Next up was a monster climb called Ancient Bristlecone, also known as White Mountain.  The climb gets its dual name from one the oldest trees and also because you turn off of Hwy 168 to complete the climb on White Mountain Road.  The climb is on the Top 10 toughest climbs list generated by John Summerson.

This tree is located on the east side of Patriarch Grove at 11,200 ft. of elevation, is one of the most picturesque of all bristlecones in the White Mts.

Ancient Bristlecone/White Mountain Road is one long-ass climb.  The bottom half ramps up continuously with 12% rollers. You think you are tired or don’t have the legs because the terrain belies the actual steep grades you are struggling to overcome.   The lower portion of the climb is just something you have to get through to get to the good part.  Once the road starts to narrow that’s when the climb gets scenic and seems to be worth all the suffering on the desert-like scapes of the lower slopes.

The upper half is lined with trees and rock formations and even single lane sections.  It’s really a lot more appealing to the eye when you get to the tree line.  Once off the 168 onto White Mountain Rd you really feel like you are in an alpine climb in another country. It’s one of my favorite sections of the climb. The steep rollers are not all done yet.   I remember distinctly at the 8,000 foot elevation sign a good steep roller waking me up from my lull.  As you continue to ascend, you need to ready yourself for the last three miles which will be at 10% average.  So make sure you save some for the last few miles of the climb because it WILL get steeper and remain consistent to the end–when you are most tired.

As I crested, it was drizzling and getting cold.  When I started the climb in Big Pine, just 2.5 hours earlier and 6000 feet lower,  it was 95 degrees F now I was shivering from the cold and getting wet as well.  I wasn’t going to be hanging out at over 10,000 feet of elevation with what looked like a storm coming in.   I wanted to find a marker, an elevation sign or anything to document my ascent but I was in a hurry to get down from elevation and OFF THE MOUNTAIN.  I immediately turned around and started my recovery process while I was descending.  I felt I had done a good day’s work of over 10,000 FEET OF GAIN IN JUST 44 MILES.

As a refresher, or if this is your first time reading my blog the list below created by John Summerson is what I have been working to complete in my last two “weekends”.

Most Difficult Climbs:

1) Onion Valley —               DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) Horseshoe Meadows — DONE 6/10/10!!
3) White Mountain–    DONE 06/25/10!!
4) Sherman Pass–              DONE 6/24/10!!
5) Whitney Portal —          DONE 6/10/10!!
6) Mount Baldy–               DONE- too many times to mention
7) Shirley Meadows–        DONE 6/24/10!!
8) South Lake–                  DONE as part of Everest Challenge Stage Race
9) Mount Palomar–           DONE 6/06/10!!– too many times to mention
10) Mosquito Flat–           DONE as part of Everest Challenge Stage Race

Greatest Elevation Gained:

1) Horseshoe Meadows – 6,234 feet– DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) White Mountain – 6,204 feet  DONE 06/25/10!!
3) 190 – 6,199 feet
4) J21/245/180 – 5,750 feet
5) Mosquito Flat – 5,548 feet- DONE AS PART OF EVEREST CHALLENGE
6) Dantes View – 5,475 feet
7) South Lake – 5,445 feet- DONE AS PART OF EVEREST CHALLENGE
8) Sherman Pass – 5,316 feet– DONE 6/24/10!!
9) Emigrant Pass – 5,309 feet– DONE 04/04/10 – BLOG POST
10) Onion Valley – 5,169 feet DONE 6/10/10!!

Highest Elevation Attained:

1) Mosquito Flat – 10,220 feet- DONE AS PART OF EVEREST CHALLENGE
2) White Mountain – 10,152 feet DONE 06/25/10!!
3) Horseshoe Meadows – 10,034 feet DONE 6/10/10!!
4) Tioga Pass – 9,945 feet
5) South Lake – 9,852 feet– DONE AS PART OF EVEREST CHALLENGE!
6) Sonora Pass – 9,624 feet
7) Kaiser Pass – 9,184 feet
8) Onion Valley – 9,163 feet — DONE 6/10/10!!
9) Lake Sabrina – 9,141 feet
10) Sherman Pass – 9,126 feet– DONE 6/24/10!!

Ancient Bristlecone Climb power data



Ancient Bristlecone Grade Analysis from Garmin Training Center

Ancient Bristlecone AKA White Mountain data from Garmin Training Center

All for now.  Thank you for reading my blog.  Pass it on to a good friend.  See you on the road.

UPDATE HERE ARE GARMIN FILES FOR THE 2010 EVEREST CHALLENGE

DAY 1

DAY 2 

 

Everest Challenge Race Report


Everest Challenge was a bust. Sorry to disappoint but I had to DNF.

I came down with something on Wednesday night. More like early Thursday morning. I had trouble getting to sleep with an upset stomach. Then in the wee morning hours I began vomiting and the other thing. I went to work Thursday knowing I would be off on Friday. I couldn’t keep anything down and I was feeling lousy but I made it through the day. Thursday night I didn’t sleep well either.

On Friday, we drove to Bishop still wondering if I would feel better. It wasn’t the case. At dinner I was still having GI issues. That evening I took some Immodium.

On Saturday, I thought I have to be better by now. I lined up for the hardest USCF race in California– and about 5 hours I DNF’d. I had not been able to fuel as I needed to and I also had been to the bathroom three times. My stomach was in knots and revolting to anything I was putting in.

So there you have it. Months of training for EC and I had to DNF half-way through the first of two days.

Well there is always next year. I was very conflicted at first but now I am good with it. I DNF’d because there is no way I would have ever finished that race. Even more accurately I SHOULD HAVE NEVER STARTED THE RACE.

Now it’s time to focus on the Furnace Creek 508.

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