CORPScamp Santa Monica


As many of you know I am sidelined with a broken femur.  You can read about it here.  I had a huge season of climbing planned for 2014.  There is no time to morn for what could have been this season!  NO!  Instead of riding I will support great events that I truly believe in.  I and the REV Cycling organization endorse the AdventureCORPS events.

One such event is currently accepting camp participants.  CORPScamp Santa Monica will be held Feb 24-27 (Monday-Thursday).  Here is a description from the AdventureCORPS site:

“The latest, greatest edition of CORPScamp features four days of SAG-supported, one-of-a-kind cycling in and around the Santa Monica Mountains. We’ve been cycling regularly here since 1994 and we never tire of sharing one of the world’s most dramatic, inspiring, and invigorating landscapes.

CORPScamp Santa Monica Mountains features a specific route each day, with route sheets, support vehicle on the course, and two or more ride leaders. Most routes feature various distance options, too. Each afternoon at CORPScamp features “The Yoga Social” with a rejuvenating yoga class taught by your co-host, a fellow cyclist and life-long fitness professional: Laurie Kostman. CORPSyoga is designed for all camp participants, regardless of yoga background, or lack thereof, and is designed to help each camper unwind, accelerate recovery for the next day’s adventure, minimize the chance of injury, and rejuvenate and restore energy balance. Social time before and after the actual yoga class gives everyone a chance to swap stories while enjoying herbal tea. The camp also includes two group dinners. Every activity is optional, though; campers are free to “check out any time you like” if they want a break, extra rest, or private time.”

I have attended CORPScamps before and I can personally vouch for the quality of the support, route selection and general atmosphere.  This camp will include some of the best riding in the Santa Monica Mountains.  I’ve ridden many of the climbs but never with full SAG support.  The weather should be moderate.  Southern California has a had an unseasonably warm winter.  Click here is a post of the Death Valley CORPScamp.

If you can get away for a week of riding I strongly recommend you attend CORPScamp Santa Monica.  I hope to see you there.  I will be providing support during the camp.  Come up and introduce yourself.  You can begin your registration process here

 

Mt Whitney Super Century– SPOT Link


 

 

Tomorrow I will be riding the Mt Whitney Super Century.  Here is the SPOT Transmitter link if you care to follow on the SPOT page.

Thank you Brad Horton for the use of the SPOT Transmitter.

http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/viewspots.jsp?glId=0Po3rlAvZRhphLYqLgPtFWXFqBnoazRkk

 

CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego Day 4


Day 4 – 47 miles with 6,444 feet of gain

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Day 4 began with a the long climb up White Mountain after a short warm-up of four miles.  It is the last climb (climb #3) on Day 2 of Everest Challenge.  As Paul Sherwin would say, “It’s a beast of a climb”.   Generally his exaggerations are a bit much.  But in this circumstance it is more than fitting.  Here are the stats on White Mountain– 21 miles long with an average grade of 6% and an elevation gain of 6,204′.  But even as daunting as a 6K of climbing in ONE climb may sound it still doesn’t tell the whole story.  Maximum grade in the lower half is 14% while max in the upper half is 17%. There are lots of 9-12% rollers in the bottom third. The last 3 miles average 10% grade.    Now add heat!  The last time I did Everest Challenge was 2010.  It was ridiculously hot (above 96F). Unfortunately, today was no different, 96F!  This IS a beast of a climb!

After White Mountain the CCSD camp had us scheduled to do Glacier Lodge (9 miles long with an average grade of 8% and an elevation gain of 3,860′).  But I bowed out of the second climb.  I had just the right amount of fatigue, climbing endurance and heat exposure for the day.  I felt like I had had a perfect training day.  Since I hadn’t been riding very much for the last month coming to a camp and doing over 300 miles for the week (35 miles before camp) and over 30,000 feet of climbing I knew I had nothing to prove by doing one more climb.  I actually felt that one more climb in that heat would not add anymore training value to the day.  Here is where experience comes into play.  A good workout doesn’t necessarily mean total deconstruction, exhaustion and heat stroke!  Moreover, I wanted to get back home to see my son and I was still 6 hours away!

Here are two other training days where I have done the Glacier Lodge/White Mountain combo

September 10, 2010

June 26, 2010

Above Day 2 of  Everest Challenge.

White Mountain Grade Analysis 20 miles 6220 feet of gain!!

Temperature in Big Pine – launching pad for Day 2 of Everest Challenge

White Mountain Detail- Lots of grey lines (crank torque) shooting above yellow line (power) once this indicates the steep ramps and being under-geared (38×28)

Near the summit of Ancient Bristlecone or White Mountain

As you can see White Mountain ranks prominently in the California’s toughest climbs.

Most Difficult Climbs:

1) Onion Valley — DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) Horseshoe Meadows — DONE 6/10/10!!
3) White Mountain
4) Sherman Pass
5) Whitney Portal — DONE 6/10/10!!
6) Mount Baldy
7) Shirley Meadows
8) South Lake
9) Mount Palomar DONE 6/06/10!!
10) Mosquito Flat

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
6) Dantes View – 5,475 feet
7) South Lake – 5,445 feet
8) Sherman Pass – 5,316 feet
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
2) White Mountain – 10,152 feet
3) Horseshoe Meadows – 10,034 feet DONE 6/10/10!!
4) Tioga Pass – 9,945 feet DONE 7/27/12!!
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

source

One last word on CCSD – this an exceptional way to get your climb-on and training specificity.  The Everest Challenge course reconnaissance is essential for anyone wanting to have a successful attempt at completing the event.  Most people cant put their head around a climb that is 22 miles long when that is normally the distance someone would go on a recovery ride.  The event was professionally run, well SAG’d, a nightly training lecture provided, and great healthy home made food.  I strongly encourage anyone interested to visit the CCSD website a book a camp!

Two different preparations of Salmon, Couscous, Broccoli, Corn, Squash, Spinach Salad, and fresh fruit for desert!

 

CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego Day 3


Day 3 – 68 miles with 8,800 feet of gain

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After getting our feet wet with some of the climbs near Mammoth and getting acclimated at altitude it was time get on with some serious climbing. After-all, the objective of the Cycling Camps San Diego (CCSD) high altitude camp is to prepare you for two major events, Everest Challenge and the Furnace Creek 508.  Let’s briefly describe these events.  Everest Challenge has 29,000 feet of climbing in a two day format.  The Furnace Creek 508 is 508 miles with 35,000 feet of climbing in a non-stop Ultra race format.

Above are the two days of Everest Challenge.

The profile for the Furnace Creek 508

Today’s ride– notice the grey line- that is crank torque and indicates steeper grades. Yellow is power.  I should probably have a larger cassette than 28T 😉

On Day 1 of Everest Challenge we climb Mosquito Flat then Pine Creek then finish off with South Lake.  In training, unless you are a glutton for punishment, there is no real need to do all three climbs in one day to feel that you are preparing yourself properly for Everest Challenge.  I have come out to Big Pine and Lone Pine on several occasions (here and here) and done just two out of the three, Pine Creek and Mosquito Flat.  The main reason is the climb to South Lake is boooooring.  It is on a main road and if you do two miles of it you have done 10 miles of it.  It’s all the same and in my opinion and not worth the trouble.

Another climbing day at altitude and another long warm-up.  I was also a still dehyrdrated from the day before.  I felt I didn’t refuel enough either.  We began our route at Tom’s Place and descended down into Rovana to begin our first climb, Pine Creek.  As you can see on the graph below Pine Creek is a good steady climb.  It progressively gets steeper but then after mile six there are a few dips which makes the last push to the top a little easier.

 From the top of Pine Creek to the summit on Mosquito Flat I took on five bottles of fuel and water- more than I have EVER taken on this climb.  By comparison, when I come out to do this climb unsupported I take three bottles.  Furthermore, on race day I make it up this climb on two bottles.

I good long climb of 21 miles where you gain almost 6,000 feet in one climb!! I felt very well supported by CCSD.  I continued to take on water and fuel and made it to the top of Mosquito Flat.  Wow what a day!!!

Mosquito Flat- Is the highest paved road in California and so tops out at 10,250 feet. It’s a good long climb of 21 miles where you gain almost 6,000 feet in one climb!! I felt very well supported by CCSD.  I continued to take on water and fuel and made it to the top of Mosquito Flat.  Wow what a day!!!

As you can see below Mosquito Flat ranks in several of California’s top ten lists!

Most Difficult Climbs:

1) Onion Valley — DONE 6/10/10 !!
2) Horseshoe Meadows — DONE 6/10/10!!
3) White Mountain
4) Sherman Pass
5) Whitney Portal — DONE 6/10/10!!
6) Mount Baldy
7) Shirley Meadows
8) South Lake
9) Mount Palomar DONE 6/06/10!!
10) Mosquito Flat

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
6) Dantes View – 5,475 feet
7) South Lake – 5,445 feet
8) Sherman Pass – 5,316 feet
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
2) White Mountain – 10,152 feet
3) Horseshoe Meadows – 10,034 feet DONE 6/10/10!!
4) Tioga Pass – 9,945 feet DONE 7/27/12!!
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

source

 

CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego Day 2


Day 2 was scheduled to be 68 miles with 4,000 feet of gain

Actual 90 miles and 6,600 feet of gain. (I added Tioga Pass since we were “so close”)

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We stopped to refuel at famous gourmet eatery the Whoa Nelli Deli on the outskirts of  Lee Vining.  I am remiss that I didn’t sample the acclaimed cuisine but there was a 12 mile climb just ahead.

I had a good day on the bike today. I took a longer time to warm-up and went easier than the other riders on the first climb of the day.  Considering today was day three for me riding at altitude I felt fine. I kept my effort at low to medium intensity and prevented any of my typical surges and sprints over rollers and summits.

Tioga Pass climb was a toughie. It is 12.3 miles from Hwy 395 to Yosemite Park entrance. The first 3.5 miles or so are fairly easy but with 8.5 miles to go it kicks up and stays at over 8% for about six miles.The climb then rolls through a few vista points and the Tioga Pass Resort and then kicks up one last time to the Yosemite Park entrance. Tioga Pass ranks #4 as the highest elevation attained in California (paved road climbs).  On Day 3 of CCSD camp I will do Mosquito Flat, which I have climbed multiple times before.  Day 4 I will do White Mountain which I have also done many times before. Read about California’s 10 toughest climbs here

Highest Elevation Attained:

1) Mosquito Flat – 10,220 feet
2) White Mountain – 10,152 feet
3) Horseshoe Meadows – 10,034 feet DONE 6/10/10!!
4) Tioga Pass – 9,945 feet DONE 7/27/12!!
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

Source

The return was tough because I didn’t have any fuel with me for the last 32 miles– when you need it the most. I had two bottles of water a few climbs and headwind to battle to get back to Mammoth Lakes.

Tioga Pass Climb Analysis – at altitude and a tough middle section you will be surprised how hard this 4.7% avg grade climb will feel.  It tops out at 9,945 feet!

 

 

Listening to pre-ride briefing by Rob Panzera

 

 

 

June Lake

June Lake – at an elevation of 7654 feet (2333 m) The population was 629 at the 2010 census. In the Summer that can grow by 2500 visitors

Silver Lake- SAG stop wonderfully supported by CCSD

Silver Lake General Store

Tioga Pass looking East

My friend Susan

Ok random picture but how many of you grew up with this type of sink?  I did!  I remember growing up in the 60’s and seeing these split sinks everywhere!

A Seagull at Mono Lake may seem like an odd sight 250 miles from the coast but there is actually a reason from them being there. Read below.

Of these five birds, the best known is the California Gull. Some people are surprised to find a “seagull” in this area of mountains and deserts, but the California Gull depends upon Mono Lake to offer food and safe nesting and mating areas. Each spring about 50,000 gulls (approximately 85 percent of the California breeding population) fly to Mono Lake and feed along the shoreline, and bathe and drink at the freshwater inlets. Alkali flies and brine shrimp form their main food supply. The gulls that one sees at Mono Lake early in the summer are the adults in the familiar black, white, and gray plumage. They will mate, select a nest site, and lay their eggs by mid-May. The eggs will hatch by mid-June and by late July the gray-brown fledglings will begin crossing the lake to feed on their own. By early fall, most will have migrated back to the coast. The young will not return to Mono Lake until they reach maturity in four years.

Read more: http://www.gorp.com/parks-guide/travel-ta-inyo-national-forest-birdwatching-california-sidwcmdev_065833.html#ixzz227xiz1dJ

 

CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego Day 1


50 miles 5,800 feet of climbing

Day 1 is designed to begin the altitude acclimation process.  Today’s course was intended to be ridden at endurance pace.  Keep in mind your power and heart rate can be down as much as 15% at elevation.  I went fairly “easy” as far as my numbers appear but I assure you it felt more like medium intensity. I believe I am having an easier time acclimating to the altitude, relatively speaking, than the other campers because of my CVAC Sessions at Ascent – OC.

The scenery was amazing and the support by CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego was right on the money.  Rob Panzera, President of CCSD, provided coaching tips on descending before the ride.  Later at Minaret Vista, 9,265 feet, Rob provided information on the affects of altitude on the body as it relates to heart rate and power.

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It’s either up or down 😉 data from Training Peaks WKO

Data from Ride with GPS

George “Red-Eyed Vireo” Vargas at Minaret Vista 9,265 feet

USA Olympic Marathoner Meb Keflezighi or here still running at altitude just days before the London Olympics

Devil’s Postpile

A Geologic Wonder

Established in 1911 by presidential proclamation, Devils Postpile National Monument protects and preserves the Devils Postpile formation, the 101-foot high Rainbow Falls, and pristine mountain scenery.  The formation is a rare sight in the geologic world and ranks as one of the world’s finest examples of columnar basalt. Its columns tower 60 feet high and display an unusual symmetry.

From the Gate House adjacent Minaret Vista pictured below

Minaret Vista Station Elevation 9,176

Rob Panzera, President of CCSD – Cycling Camps San Diego, at Minaret Vista 9,265 Elevation

 

Somehow even though I was riding easy I picked up a top ten on a Strava segment (unaware it existed) – go figure 😉