I posted this write up in the Road forum, as I don't receive enough internet abuse in my life.
Ron - as I can't make your painfest tomorrow, I submit this offering in its place. For some reason, I found Sierra somewhat easier than I was expecting. I think it might be that much of the climb is sub 15% or so. It was also the first climb of the day. Welch Creek ended up as advertised. Climbing El Toyonal/Lomas in Orinda has really helped stamina for steep stuff, but this one just didn't stop. I thought I might run out of steam, but managed to seal the deal.
Great solo ride, very enjoyable, and bizarrely good weather for this time of year.