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Old 06-24-09, 04:45 PM   #1
VaultGuru
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Anybody doing STP this year?

We are going to ride the Seattle to Portland ride for the first time this year. STP has two options. Either do it in one day or two days. We are doing it in a day. Anybody else planning in riding it? I guess last year it was hot for the PNW - 90+. Those of us that ae used to the heat in the central valley should be fine. Can't believe how big this ride is. 10,000 riders total and 2500 one day riders. We are going to be first out of the gate at 04:45 hoping that most of the one-day riders are mostly experienced riders. We are riding our tandem, so should be moving pretty fast.

Any insights from those of you that have done it before?
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Old 06-24-09, 05:53 PM   #2
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I can't help with insight, but I can suggest this. Have a great time!
__________________
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Some sort of pithy irrelevant one-liner should go here.
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Old 06-24-09, 06:23 PM   #3
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I'm bib number 2067 - my first STP, one day...my first double century, riding with my regular century buddy and some of his PNW friends who've all done it before.
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Old 06-24-09, 06:52 PM   #4
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I'm bib number 1711, my wife's 1712. We're doing it on our tandem, 2 day. I probably won't be seeing you one day but I really want to get a tandem paceline going.
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Old 06-24-09, 08:05 PM   #5
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We are going to ride the Seattle to Portland ride for the first time this year. STP has two options. Either do it in one day or two days. We are doing it in a day. Anybody else planning in riding it? I guess last year it was hot for the PNW - 90+. Those of us that ae used to the heat in the central valley should be fine. Can't believe how big this ride is. 10,000 riders total and 2500 one day riders. We are going to be first out of the gate at 04:45 hoping that most of the one-day riders are mostly experienced riders. We are riding our tandem, so should be moving pretty fast.

Any insights from those of you that have done it before?
I've done it both one day and two day. Not very much climbing, beautiful scenery until you get to Oregon, food is disappointing at most stops. Lots and lots of folks who have never ridden an organized ride before, so beware of sketchy riders, especially in the first 25 miles. Starting at 4:45 didn't make a difference for us-I was almost taken out on mile 8 when an idiot went too hot down a downhill sweeper. Best part of the ride for me is the ten miles before Centralia-beautiful area-and the hill/downhill near Vader. Also, it was really weird for me to be riding in July with green all around instead of brown...

I last rode it in 2006 when temperatures were in the 70s-80s. I was fine but my friend from Seattle melted. The two day ride I did in 2004 was more social but lots more sketchy riders than the one day. Not sure if I'll do the two day again without special motivation (my son joining me or something like that). Have a good time.
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Old 06-24-09, 08:19 PM   #6
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Thanks Rushfan. I heard that there a lot of sketcky riders and you validated it, even though we are going to be in the first wave. We will be really careful. Know what you mean about brown vs. green. We just got back from a week in the Vail/Aspen CO area. They have had rain for 43 days and are really tired of it. The flip side was that it was early spring. Everything was green and the wildflowers were just starting to pop. Have clients in the Centralia, Longview area, so know the green up there well. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 06-24-09, 08:42 PM   #7
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Thanks Rushfan. I heard that there a lot of sketcky riders and you validated it, even though we are going to be in the first wave. We will be really careful. Know what you mean about brown vs. green. We just got back from a week in the Vail/Aspen CO area. They have had rain for 43 days and are really tired of it. The flip side was that it was early spring. Everything was green and the wildflowers were just starting to pop. Have clients in the Centralia, Longview area, so know the green up there well. Thanks for the advice.
No problem. Wish I was going up there with you-very very enjoyable ride.
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Old 06-25-09, 11:28 AM   #8
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Oooh! Late for the party... I'm in!
Bib number just came in yesterday: 6881

This will be my 2nd (last year being the 1st) for what hopefully becomes an annual tradition. This is an awesome ride. I will be doing it in one day along with both of my brothers so it will be a 200-mile race rather than a ride.

Things to be aware of... Rushfan has it right. SKETCHY RIDERS!!! Of the 10k riders only 2500 are doing it in 1-day so the first 100 miles are just mindblowing with how many riders there are (Cars aren't an issue since police control most of the busy intersections and just the sheer number of bikes make it like a 100-mile critical mass). In the first couple of miles I passed a guy on a unicycle and two kids on skateboards (they had bib numbers... ). You're around people of all skill levels. Some will pass you on the right. Some will rub up against you in the beginning. Look alive basically. A lot of rookies out there. I saw 3 crashes, 2 needing medical care. After Centralia it thins quite a bit and is like a normal century ride. This ride is really flat and it felt like a tailwind all day. It got up to 92 in Portland which for me is just perfect, but man! You would have thought the PNW had turned into the Gobi desert. It was like the end of the tortoise/hare story everywhere you looked during the last 50 miles people were resting under trees, sleeping on lawns,etc. It was hilarious.

This is probably the easiest double in the world. Unless it rains, let's hope not. No matter what, It's going to be funnnn as hell!
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Old 06-25-09, 12:55 PM   #9
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Nice package of stuff!
I need some convincing to buy the jersey... somebody twist my arm.

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Old 06-25-09, 03:12 PM   #10
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Definitely a cool jersey. You NEED one. Buy it now
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Old 06-25-09, 03:33 PM   #11
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All the cool kids get the jersey.
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Old 06-25-09, 03:36 PM   #12
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As everyone stated, you're looking at being in with a whole mess of sketchy riders at the beginning. Don't count on an experienced pack just because you're heading out with one of the first waves. It's not like you sign a form saying you're doing a one or a two day route, and there are a lot of 2 day riders in the early waves who just want a head start on getting to the 100 - 130mi point where they'll conk out for the day.
Watch for dropped bottles until you get down to the lakefront. Last year, I can't tell you how many people were dropping 'em or had 'em hop out of the cage on a bump... it was a whole bunch.
Unless you're planning on a social cruise, don't stop at the first couple rest areas. They're insanely crowded unless you're the first pack of the first wave to get there.
Don't get caught up in the lines at Centralia. The food's not that great that you need to stand in a 10 minute line for it.
Save some energy for miles 101 - 150. That's where the rollers are. Too many people hear that it's a flat course (which it is) but don't look at the profile. Much of the elevation is gained in that 50 mile stretch right after the midway point.
If it's hot, it's a humid heat. If it's windy, it will likely be a headwind. If it's raining, be kind to your fellow riders and pop some fenders on. It's a nice course, a well organized support team, and you won't need the route book because you can either follow the Dan Henrys on the road (very well marked) or there are enough people that you'll never be out of sight range of anyone.
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Old 06-25-09, 06:41 PM   #13
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This ride is beginning to sound like the cycling equivalent to the Bay To Breakers run (aka Bay To bonkers)
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Old 06-25-09, 11:56 PM   #14
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It is a flat course, and the rollers are fun.
We went the past two years, but this year we're on an 8-day bike tour that weekend.

Leak at non-rest stops or you'll never finish. Often there's a coffee house 1/2 a mile after a rest stop.

We had a tail wind last year that was like god's own breath blowing us south. Hope you do too.

Bad bad cyclists abound. Watch out!

"THE HILL" will make you laugh.

I sure wish we were going this year just for the jersey!
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Old 06-25-09, 11:57 PM   #15
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OH, DiabloScott. Stop screwing about and order the jersey. You'll be sorry if you don't.
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Old 06-26-09, 07:02 PM   #16
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Ahhh, one more IMPORTANT thing:
Getting into the parking lot will take FOREVER. As in allow 45 minutes or even more from when you get almost there. The entry into the lot is very very slow.
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Old 06-26-09, 07:40 PM   #17
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I'm in. Got the confirmation today. Bib #733

cccorlew, we are riding from our hotel about a half mile from the start. No bags to drop off. All we have to do is get there and start riding. Should we still allow 45 minutes?

Last edited by VaultGuru; 06-26-09 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 06-26-09, 11:43 PM   #18
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I'm in. Got the confirmation today. Bib #733

cccorlew, we are riding from our hotel about a half mile from the start. No bags to drop off. All we have to do is get there and start riding. Should we still allow 45 minutes?
As Tricia says, only if you plan on using the porta potties before you launch.

Have fun.
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Old 06-29-09, 05:40 PM   #19
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STP, aka: the hangover 200. This will be my third consecutive 2 day STP with my good buddy Tony. This is a fun event! period. Yes, there are scary riders, there is scary equipement
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Old 06-29-09, 05:47 PM   #20
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STP, aka: the hangover 200. This will be my third consecutive 2-day STP with my good buddy Tony. This is a fun event! period. Yes, there are scary riders, there is scary equipment (you'll be amazed at the amount of equipment failures in the first 200 yards, dropped chains, flat tires, etc) and the food stops are crowded. But keep in mind you're one of Ten Thousand riders. Centralia is a great place to overnight if you're doing the 2-day. Multiple food choices, showers, pancake breakfast on Sunday morning, and of course The Beer Garden.

We thought about doing a one day STP one of these years, but that would be more like training (work) and would definitely detract from the experience for us. We did the RAMROD last year a couple weeks after the STP so we feel confident in our ability to suffer and have no need to prove it to ourselves in this event.

Enjoy the ride.

Rick--Bib #8088
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Old 06-29-09, 05:49 PM   #21
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WOW, 2 posts...how the heck did that happen?
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Old 06-29-09, 07:04 PM   #22
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I did an audio report on STP for the Fredcast.
Here's a link to just my report
STP audio report
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Old 07-01-09, 05:16 PM   #23
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I'll be riding through Seattle to Portland, albeit over three days, and three weeks later. Does that count?
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Old 07-02-09, 11:03 AM   #24
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Portland weather for middle of next week (as far as they project):

Wednesday
Partly sunny. Highs around 75. Northwest wind 5 to 10 mph.

Sunrise: 05:26 AM (PDT)
Sunset: 09:01 PM (PDT)


Wow, hope that holds up... they're getting 90's today and tomorrow.
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Old 07-02-09, 11:38 AM   #25
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Good luck to all going for that ride, especially the single day riders. Sounds like a lot of fun.
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