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Old 06-01-09, 01:40 PM   #1
DanteB
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Eastern Sierra Double-Snow?

Have you checked the weather report for the ESD? They're calling for rain/snow showers and high of 42 on the June Lake Loop. The rest of the ride they're calling for isolated T-storms.
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Old 06-01-09, 02:50 PM   #2
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Sounds like fun Dante, I'll be sure to bring my leg warmers and rain jacket! See you there.

Thanks for the weather update!

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Old 06-01-09, 05:58 PM   #3
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I'm going up there Thursday, I'll let you know what the weather is like.
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Old 06-01-09, 08:05 PM   #4
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Hi Dante,

Here's what I'm seeing on weather.com:

Bishop, CA high 76, low 45
Paradise, CA high 72, low 55
Mammoth Lakes, CA 56 high, 33 low
June Lake, CA high 41, Low 28
Lee Vining, CA high 57, low 33
Benton, CA high 73, low 47

So not really comfortable, but not brutal either. There are 3 peaks over 8,000 feet, so it will be chilly up there! I'm guessing it's Mammoth Scenic Loop, Dead Man's Summit and Sage Hen, but could be wrong.

Funny that June Lake is going to be the coldest, but we'll hit there after the sun's been up for awhile at least. Do you know any other towns to check?

Plus, this is Monday, the weather could be totally re-mixed by Saturday.

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Old 06-01-09, 08:49 PM   #5
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The reason June Lake is so cold is the way it sits in the mountain. Everytime I've been there it's always in the shade. It's kind of a cove right at the base of the mountain. As the weather goes over it dumps everything there. The ride through that area is about an 1-1.5 hours.
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Old 06-02-09, 08:00 AM   #6
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Looks like not a lot of other 50+ forumites will be joining us on the Eastern Sierra Double. We're the only two posting on this thread so far!

And yes, about a hour and a half through that area sounds right, i.e. from the descent off Dead Man's Summit until you turn left and head for Mono Lake. I'll dress warm for the start and pull things out of my jersey pockets when I get to the Shell station right before June Lake.

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Old 06-02-09, 05:13 PM   #7
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Sounds like a plan to me. I might take a drive over to June Lake Friday to see just what the weather is like.
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Old 06-02-09, 11:09 PM   #8
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Good idea Dante, on the drive to check it out on Friday! I'm all set on clothing with the exception of wondering if I really need my wool tights . . . or not. Sure will be nice in the 36 degree sections, but too warm in the 60's and 70's.

I'm thinking not now (full leg warmers instead) but I could change my mind!

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Old 06-03-09, 06:52 PM   #9
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These storms are starting to get bad in the area. They're blowing in from the south, through Bakersfield, Lake Isabella and then up through the Mammoth area. Watching the news a few minutes ago there was a 12 year old boy riding his bike struck by lighting today in the Lake Isabella area.
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Old 06-03-09, 11:00 PM   #10
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I've never been struck by lightning . . . on a double or otherwise. Kind of hate to start now!

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Old 06-04-09, 08:58 AM   #11
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It might light up your life.
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Old 06-04-09, 12:51 PM   #12
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It might light up your life.
Is that the light right before everything goes black?

Regardless, here is the latest from weather.com

City / Town____ Weather Forecast____ Elevation

Bishop High 72 Low 49 Rain Showers 30% 4,147 feet
Paradise High 70 Low 54 Rain Showers 60% 1,778 feet
Mammoth Lakes High 51 Low 34 Rain Showers 40% 7,880 feet
June Lake High 36 Low 29 Rain Showers 40% 7,654 feet
Lee Vining High 51 Low 34 Rain Showers 40% 6,781 feet
Benton High 65 Low 48 Rain Showers 30% 5,630 feet

Should be quite the adventure!

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Old 06-04-09, 07:22 PM   #13
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Extra, Extra, Extra……..I’m in Bishop and the weather…..well the sun is out, no it’s behind the clouds….no it’s out again. It’s 6PM, the temp is 74 and it has snowed the last couple of nights in the mountains around Bishop. Now that’s the good news! Let’s talk about the wind, it’s blowing and doing a damn fine job of it. According to the NWS it’s blowing at 25 with gusts to 35. The direction is out of the south, in other words it’s blowing from Bishop straight to Benton. So our last 34 miles will be into a strong headwind. It’s 44 at June Lake right now. I just talked to a Highway Patrolman while I’m sitting here at Starbucks and he said winds and rain showers are expected to continue through the weekend. I’ll try to post some news in the morning.

On another note, the person that was coming with me canceled at the last minute and I have a room with 2 queen beds if someone would like to share a room. I’ll be on line for a while, and then I’m going to eat some dinner and be back around 8:30PM.
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Old 06-05-09, 08:00 AM   #14
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Thanks for the update Dante! Sounds like more bad news than good, but that will make it more of a challenge! I'm still in Whittier, headed for Bishop in a few hours.

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Old 06-05-09, 08:35 AM   #15
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Rick, it very cool in Bishop right now 45, June Lake is 34. Oh I'm sorry, it just dropped to 32 at June Lake. This is what the NWS has to say about June Lake for tomorrow:
Saturday: Scattered snow showers before 11am, then scattered rain showers. Some thunder is also possible. Snow level 8000 feet rising to 9000 feet. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 47. West wind between 5 and 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%.
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Old 06-05-09, 09:08 AM   #16
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Rick, lastest observation. When I first looked outside this morning there was cloud cover and the sun was trying to peek through it. I could see the mountain tops, covered with snow just west of Bishop. I just stepped out and the sun is hitting the ground here in Bishop, patchy, and the mountains to the west are no longer visible. They're completely cloud covered with some nasty looking clouds.
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Old 06-05-09, 01:40 PM   #17
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Latest from Planet Ultra:
DUE TO UNSEASONABLE WINTER-LIKE WEATHER, IT'S ALMOST CERTAIN THAT WE WILL BE USING
AN ALTERNATE ROUTE FROM BISHOP TO OLANCHA AND BACK.
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Old 06-07-09, 01:02 AM   #18
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Rick and I both finished the double. Yes we did get snow, I don't think I've ever been that cold.
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Old 06-07-09, 07:46 AM   #19
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GLad to hear it, Dante. What clothes did you have? Were your feet cold? For me, freezing feet ruins the day. I'm sure Rick will write the whole story when he gets time. Did you guys ride together?
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Old 06-07-09, 09:46 AM   #20
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Congratulations. You guys are heroes. Did you have enough spare BTU's to take any pictures? Please give us some details when you get a chance. How many finishers were there?
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Old 06-07-09, 09:57 AM   #21
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GLad to hear it, Dante. What clothes did you have? Were your feet cold? For me, freezing feet ruins the day. I'm sure Rick will write the whole story when he gets time. Did you guys ride together?
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Congratulations. You guys are heroes. Did you have enough spare BTU's to take any pictures? Please give us some details when you get a chance. How many finishers were there?
When I get home this afternoon I'll do a write-up. I'm going to be afraid to read Rick's, I'll have to re-live this ride.
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Old 06-07-09, 04:55 PM   #22
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What a day. It all started at 5AM as we rolled out of Bishop to do the Eastern Sierra Double. We weren’t doing the normal course because of cold and snow falling on the course. Did someone say this was June? The first 24 miles was an easy roll with a few small hills and some nice flats. After the first rest stop the fun began, there was a hill to climb. No one had an idea what laid ahead. It was starting as a good climb around 6-7%. This was ok but it just kept going, some it started to hail and rain. The rain didn’t quit and neither did the hill. Long story short the hill was 11 miles to the top and when we were all most to the top it started to snow.

I felt pretty good being able to get to the top and I wasn’t to wet. The only thing really soaked was my long fingered gloves and my shoes. As I started down the other side within 20 seconds I realized I was in trouble. Oh was it cold! Within a matter of second my hands stopped functioning, my feet felt like icebergs and I was shaking uncontrollably. I tried to stop the bike, I squeezed the brakes and nothing happened. I looked down and I was gaining speed. I looked and I did have my hands on the brakes but I just couldn’t seem to squeeze them tight enough. It was then I realized my hands weren’t working. Finally I got the bike stopped, but I still had 10 miles to the bottom of the hill. It took a long time to get to the bottom with several stop to warm up and catch my breath. At the bottom was a rest stop, they offered to help dry my glove and get me some food, I couldn’t stop shaking. It was 66 degrees at the bottom and I still couldn’t warm up.

When the sag vehicle made it to the bottom it was full so the only way out…..back up the 11 mile hill I just came down with the thought of rain and snow at the top. As I was climbing out I noticed the skies were clearing and maybe by the time I got to the top it would be clear, luck was with me. A quick decent to rest stop 1/3 and I was back in warm weather.

Now the push back to Bishop, I was way behind and all the people riding around me had bailed. I got back to Bishop, 101 miles, at 3:15 PM and had a quick lunch. Now I had to go out and do the other piece of the course, out to Benton and back. It was only an 82 mile round trip with 1,500’ of climbing as I thought. The cutoff time was 10PM for the ride so that meant I had about 6:30 to be able to finish the course, sounds doable. As I left Bishop the wind was blowing, between 20-25 mph. The wind never stopped, 33.6 miles to the Benton turn. On the flats I could ride at a whopping 7-8 mph, on the hills I was down to 5. I kept thing to figure if I was going to make it, it just did seem I had enough time. When I got to Benton I stopped at the sag stop and then I had to go out Hwy 120 7.1 miles to a turn-a-around. Of course there was some more climbing to do, about 1,500’ in that 7.1 miles. I made it back to the Benton rest stop at 7:50 re-watered and tried to figure what I was going to have to do to make the cutoff time. 33.6 miles, I needed to average 16.8 mph. Bishop is 1,500’ lower than Benton, so I had that advantage and I did have the now tailwind. I made it to the finish with a half hour to spare that was a 22.4 mph average. After I checked-in it was a quick dinner, shower and bed. They shorten the course a little but added extra climbing. It ended up being 185 miles this around 12,200’ of climbing and of course rain, snow and wind.
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Old 06-07-09, 08:38 PM   #23
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Yes, Dante,

I will write a detailed report, but yours is very good! Sounds like I had it easier than you did overall. Saw you and Ron (Spingineer?) at Checkpoint 1 but you were all involved in a converation, so I thought "plenty of time to talk with them later" then didn't see either of you again.

I finished about 7:10 PM, so 14 HR and 10min approx (until I see Debbie's results, but that's got to be very close), was dressed way too warm at the start, dressed fine for the summit! Honestly, I was warm enough all day, no complaints. Yes, we got rain, we got snow, plus we got hail (wow that stings at speed!) but I was so over-dressed I was ready for it.

Rode quite a bit with Vic (Biker395 on the other forum), saw Terri working SAG, but otherwise not too many riders I knew. Saw David Wu and Tony, plus Robert Freed was another OCRR rider, on a tandem with Karla this time.

Had a three man pace line going to Benton, so not too bad (vic, some CalTech guy and me), but we did some bonus miles at the U turn because we were looking for someone with a clipboard.

Oh, . . . saw Jon (whitecarabondude, vertical jon) doing the checking at where the pavements ends in the morning (Floor of Death Valley), and at Benton in the afternoon.

Too tired and brain dead to start the report this evening (Sunday), but hopefully start on it tomorrow night.

This one really was an epic double and everyone I spoke with thought it was harder than the normal Eastern Sierra route.

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Old 06-07-09, 09:14 PM   #24
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Every report I've read of this ride has described is the most. miserable. ride. ever. I can't decide if you all deserve medals of recommendation or commitment to a mental institution. I'm impressed by you who finished it, and have sympathy for those who pulled the plug early.
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Old 06-07-09, 09:52 PM   #25
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I heard only 50% of the riders finished. My friend Keith crashed but finished. His wife quit because she got too cold.
Rick, I'm glad you did O.K.
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