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  1. #1
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    The "Masochistic Metric" ride report. Part of the Garrett County Grand Fondo

    http://www.winthefight.org/granfondo...tic_metric.htm

    I'm not one for writing long winded reports to pat myself on the back but for those of you that may be considering doing this in the future here you go

    63 miles and 8327' of climbing. The ride consisted of 9 climbs according to the Garrett Co Grand Fondo site or 11 climbs if you map it with mapmyride.

    That explains the comments that I heard a couple of times of

    "DAAAAAAY-EM! THEY DIDN'T EVEN COUNT THAT AS A CLIMB! What the HE**"

    1 Cat2 climb
    2 Cat3 climbs
    4 Cat4 climbs
    4 Cat5 climbs

    http://www.tourofcalifornia.org/2006...ke-climbs.html

    Category 4: Usually less than 2 miles in length. Climbs of 250 to 500 feet in elevation gain.
    Category 3: Between 2 and 3 miles in length. Climbs of 500 to 1,500 feet in elevation gain.
    Category 2: Between 3 and 6 miles in length. Climbs of 1,500 to 3,000 feet in elevation gain.

    The Grand Fondo website has the following climbs


    White Rock Rd .75 miles / 550' Average 13.9%
    Old Morgantown Rd 3 miles / 1000' Average 6.3%
    Everly .6 miles / 350' Average 11.0%
    Collier .4 miles / 300' Average 14.2%
    Pigs Ear .4 miles / 300' Average 14.2%
    Devil's half acre 1.25 miles / 600' Average 9.1%
    Bowman Hill 1.1 miles 800' Average 13.8%
    Negro Mountain Rd. .6 miles / 250' Average 7.9%
    Final climb .75 miles / 500' Average 12.6%

    Began the absolutely gorgeous day at the start line with Paisan and hundreds of others in 60 degree weather. I was talking to some at the begriming and there were 3 there from Delaware and they came out to this ride to "try some hills". I thought to myself that this isn't the place to be "trying hills" especially if you are from the shore.

    The first 4.7 or so miles of the ride you don't even have to pedal once you get going fast enough that you don't fall over. You come to a 200' climb that lasts only .4 miles so "It doesn't count."

    The first listed climb is White Rock Rd which has some very steep short parts at the beginning then levels off to an 8% grade. This is where Paisan told me - "Never thought I'd see my heart rate start to recover when climbing 8%"

    At mile 15.5 you just stop peddling and take in the scenery until mile 18. It's literally all downhill - I never pedaled a stroke. Conserve what energy you can because after Aid Station 1 it's gets ugly. Paisan and I decided that we didn't need to stop here.

    A short 250' climb over .6 miles (Doesn't count) then a short downhill to the climb at Old Morgantown road.

    The Old Morgantown Road climb seems to last forever and was one of the two that I hate the most. While Paisan prefers these long gradual climbs I'm more of the 'hit me in the face and get it over with' kind of climber as that's what I live around. I don't believe we saw anybody doing any 'cross training' on this climb.

    The climb at Everyly starts at mile 27 and is a short, in your face, average of 11% climb which is the kind I will accept. We met up with Dan at the bottom of this climb and the comment of
    "This is 2012, why haven't these people discovered tunnels yet?"

    I believe this climb is where a guy was mocking the gearing selection that Paisan and I had (I have a compact and threw on a X9 long cage with a 36 cassette for this ride).
    The comment of "How's that 34 and 28 with 2 feet working out for you?" would be heard more than once as this wouldn't be the last time that the same person would be taking his bike out for a walk.

    Don't get me wrong, if you have to walk some of the deal then that's fine and I am glad you are out ridding, just don't mocking laugh at a guys gear selection when you are walking your bike. Makes about as much sense as wiping before you poop.

    We saw a woman pulled over at the top of the climb so we stopped to see if she needed anything. She said she didn't and then asked if that was "the big climb". I told her No, that Collier Road and Pig's Ear Road sucked. You could see the ashen look come over her face as she huffed. Sorry but if you ask me I'll tell you how the cow ate the cabbage.

    You then have some rolling terrain until mile 32 where the climb at Collier Road starts. With an average grade of 14% this one left many doing the 'cross training' thing.

    You turn onto Pigs Ear Road at mile 35.5 and it gets ugly again with another average grade of 14%. This is where I came up on a guy and told him I'd just sit here and draft him to keep my heart rate down. He said his has been in the high 150's just about all day and asked what I was trying to keep mine down to. 145 was the answer. Another ashen defeated look from a person.

    Next up at mile 38 is the long climb at Devils Half acre, the second climb I hate. It begins as a shallow grade climb then finishes hard. Really, just maker the hill steep and get it over with. Dag gum.

    Slightly more than half way into the climb you make a slight bend to the right and look at .4 miles of folks cross training or just leaning on their bikes. I believe this is where Paisan offered to stop and help a guy fix his bike. The guy said that he was OK and Paisan said "Really? Are you sure? Cause I'll stop and help. Really I will. Please."

    At the top of this climb is Aid Station 2 where Paisan and I pulled in for some much needed water to mix our Heed/CamelBak mix with. Both Paisan and I were wearing Camelbak Skeeters (50oz) for water and had two 24oz bottles that we had Heed/CamelBak Elixir mixes in.

    At mile 45 starts the Bowman Hill climb. Another of the ones that found many cross trainers and the same 34/28 with two feet guy walking up about a mile of it. This climb has some steep patches in it which included 4 at 20%, 2 at 14% and then 2 "recovery" patches of 8% and 6%. I believe the comment here was "I've never been so glad to see 8%!"

    There is a lot of cruising between the top of this climb and the short climb on Negro Mountain road at mile 55 including another of the now infamous "THEY DIDN"T EVEN COUNT THAT AS A CLIMB!". For the record I don't count Negro Mountain Road as a climb. It's just like being home at less than 8%

    You cruise to the bottom of the finish climb which is a 500' climb over .75 miles for an average grade of 12.6%. Really? You put the finish of an 8000'+ ride at the top?

    I told Dan and Paisan that it was nice ridding and I set off to get to the top. I had one skinny pass me and I passed many that were either cross training , holding their bikes up or just grinding away defeated. This was a timed climb which I did in 12:32 placing 262nd out of 596. The "winning" time was 8:20

    Some other memorable moments:

    The Wasp trying to dry hump Paisan's arm - too funny.

    Talking to an older guy at the truck when we were loading up about nutrition and hydration. He'd asked Paisan and I what we were using so Paisan, in his typical give the shirt off his back kindness, went to great lengths explain how he arrived at his nutrition and hydration needs and plans. After a lengthily explanation of what was used the guy just scoffed and said, "That doesn't work." Paisan then asked "Weren't you the guy on the Pig's Ear climb pulled over and beating on your thighs like Mike Tyson because you were cramping?".

    Yes was the answer.

    Really, you are telling people that never cramped during a ride what doesn't work yet you were cramping at mile 35? Really?

    At the end of the day it was a great way to spend 5 hr and 40 min or so with an average HR of 134 and a max speed of 55.7 mph. Yeah, I'll bomb down one side if that means I can coast up the other. If you are fat you use momentum to your advantage. It's just physics, not rocket surgery.

    Thanks again for everything Paisan. Looking forward to Mountain Mama in August.

    If anybody is inclined to try it I'd highly recommend this ride. It's well organized, to the point that the sweep the roads before the ride.

    If you do want to do this ride prepare for it well. I'm an emeritus and live in an area where I average 52' a mile on "flat" rides.
    If you don't have any hills around you you can always just put a plastic bag over your head and have kids beat your thighs with a hammer for hours on end. In the end it's about the same.

    Registration opens Jan 1 2013. I'll be one of the first to sign up.

    Paisan - if I missed anything let us know.

  2. #2
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    There were so many memorable moments on that ride to remember all of them, so in no particular order here are some of my favorites:
    -The guy at the start talking about how there were so many expensive bikes at the ride and how he could buy a car for the price of some of the bikes. Mind you he was saying this as he was taking a Pinarello Dogma with Zipp wheels off of his roof rack.
    -The guys walking up a hill and gawking at our gears as we rode past them and their 39x28 gearing on a 14-16% section of a climb.
    -Getting passed by all of the people who walked the hills and then pedalled like mad down the other side just to pass them again as they walked the next hill.
    -Hearing myself say "oh thank god, 8%". I was actually thankful that it was only an 8% grade.
    -Meeting a guy "Dan" from Richmond who knows one of my old shop co-workers and my old boss, and who also pariticipated in a charity ride(Police Unity Tour) that I was the SAG Mechanic for back in the late 90's-early 00's.
    -The "Devils Half Acre" which was ALOT longer than a half acre. Who measured that stupid hill?
    -Begging the guy on White Rock Hill to let me fix his bike, who 30 miles later on Bowman Hill was telling someone else about the crazy guy who begged him to let him fix his dropped chain. He didn't realize I was about 5 feet in front of him as he was telling the story.
    -Asking somewhere on the Collier Road climb "it's 2012 why hasn't MaryTucky discovered tunnels yet?" and only getting a chuckle and the sound of a gear shift in response as IBO pulled away from me.
    -The guy who I witnessed beating on his thighs like Rocky Balboa in the meathouse scene. This same guy gave me a lecture later at the finish on my nutrition/hydration choices when me and IBO suffered no such issues for the duration of the ride. I did have one close call but I identified it and fixed it at the second stop(see below).
    -The final 12% climb and the support tent halfway up that everyone thought was the finish line. That tent crushed alot of people when they realized it wasn't the finish and I witnessed many people just stop at the realization they still had halfway to go. For the record I made the final climb in 12:51 (292nd)

    In case anyone is interested in my hydration/nutrition plan:
    I used perpetuem in a 25oz bottle on the bike+a 50 oz camelback filled with water & 2 camelback tabs for flavor. Because I had the camelback with water to cover hydration needs, I was able to mix the perpetuem bottle strong enough to last for 2 hours and just sipped it every 10-15 minutes. I also had a second bottle of plain water which I used to mix a second bottle of perpetuem to get me through to the second rest stop at mile 40(which was our first and only). I then mixed a third bottle of perpetuem which carried me to the finish.

    I did have one or two "twinges" coming up the devils half acre. Not a cramp but that slight warning your muscles give a few minutes before when they say "HEY DUMMY, PAY ATTENTION". Because I had been drinking plenty (25oz an hour) and getting enough calories (about 270 an hour)I immediately knew I needed some more electrolytes so i took four endurolyte tabs the organizers were handing out at the stop. I took two right then and two more an hour later for safe measure and fixed that problem. I didn't have any other issues the entire ride.

    This ride was TOUGH, but I am so glad I did it. It was superbly organized and the volunteers were great. The course was well marked, the roads had been swept before the ride so there were no loose corners or debris on the course, this is amazing considering the storm that went through the day before. I had a great partner and even though I slowed him down he never complained. We ticked off the miles and had some interesting talks on the flatter sections and the run-ins to the bigger hills(above is just a small sample of some of our discussions).

    I recommend this ride to anyone interested, but be forewarned, do your homework and be prepared for seriously steep climbing. All of the listed climbs were 12-20%, and there were a few hills that the organization didn't have listed but MMR said were categorized climbs. Apparently these hills didn't make the cut for the official list because they weren't nasty enough to be considered "climbs". We witnessed ALOT of people pay for what became a walk through the hills of Maryland because they didn't do their homework and came unprepared for the severity of the climbs.

    Like IBO said I'd much rather do long mountain pass type climbing compared to the types of hills on this course but I will definately do this ride again in next year.

  3. #3
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    Sounds awful.

    My 3,000 foot/130 km ride yesterday doesn't compare to this. Yet I ended up with a cramp on one of the final hills.

  4. #4
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    I might have to join you guys next year.

  5. #5
    Senior Member 1855Cru's Avatar
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    Bow hunter and Paisan, congrats on a great ride. Sounds pretty much like the degree of difficulty on the Blood, Sweat and Gears ride I did on Saturday. (100 miles, 12,000+ ft climbing). I completely agree about being prepared for this type of ride. I was amazed at how many people were calling for the SAG wagon to take them back after only 50 miles and before the major climbs! One dude from Orlando, FL, who had called his wife to come get him at a rest stop, said, "I guess hill repeats on the overpass wasn't enough training" no kidding? I even saw one rider on Snake mtn. come to a complete stop and fall over as she couldn't turn the pedals anymore. I admit I zig zagged up the steepest part of snake (18-20%) but I was running 34/28, a 36 on the back would have made life a lot easier but at least I made it

    You lads should come down and ride it and some of the other rides we have down here.
    http://www.ablokeandabike.blogspot.com

    2011 Cervelo R3
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  6. #6
    Senior Member IBOHUNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1855Cru View Post
    Bow hunter and Paisan, congrats on a great ride. Sounds pretty much like the degree of difficulty on the Blood, Sweat and Gears ride I did on Saturday. (100 miles, 12,000+ ft climbing). I completely agree about being prepared for this type of ride. I was amazed at how many people were calling for the SAG wagon to take them back after only 50 miles and before the major climbs! One dude from Orlando, FL, who had called his wife to come get him at a rest stop, said, "I guess hill repeats on the overpass wasn't enough training" no kidding? I even saw one rider on Snake mtn. come to a complete stop and fall over as she couldn't turn the pedals anymore. I admit I zig zagged up the steepest part of snake (18-20%) but I was running 34/28, a 36 on the back would have made life a lot easier but at least I made it

    You lads should come down and ride it and some of the other rides we have down here.
    I would love to come to Valle Crusis as that's where my Grandfather was from although I don't know exactly where.
    If they don't schedule the rides closer than 2 weeks apart next year I'll be joining you. I've got it bookmarked and a reminder in Outlook for Feb 1

    "hill repeats on an overpass" - now that's funny!

    we also had a girl fall over but she was getting back on her bike after a stop mid way through the climb on Devils Half Acre. Sad to see but she was OK.

  7. #7
    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    hey I can empathize on this...my hill was no where near that steep, but that wind gust stopped me dead in my tracks and only luck saved me from falling over. (that and a sincere desire to prove the anti clipless crowd wrong)

  8. #8
    Senior Member Catlikeone's Avatar
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    Sounds like a real stonebreaker, well done gents.
    There are no hard women, only weak men. - Raquel Welch

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