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  1. #1
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    My first Mt. Diablo ride. Met DiabloScott (pics & video)

    I finally got to climb the famous Mt. Diablo, and meet the BF legend DiabloScott! I carpooled down to Walnut Creek with the WAV Riders women's cycling club. There were only three of us this time. Seven other riders cancelled due to other cycling events.

    We parked at Heather Farm Community Center. DiabloScott was nice enough to PM me a map of a route that avoids Ygnacio Valley Road, which has a ton of traffic. On the way out of the park, another cyclist saw us and we ended up riding with him. He said that drivers on Ygnacio "don't like bikers", so he led us through quiet residential streets to the base of the mountain.

    Once the climb started on North Gate Road, the ride leader and the other cyclist slowly left me behind as usual (someday I'll be strong enough to keep up with her!). I didn't see the other cyclist again until he was descending. The ride leader was waiting at the ranger station. She told me that our other rider lost an earring somewhere on the ride. I did hear my text message notification go off mid-climb, but I didn't want to stop to check it. That explained why I couldn't see her anymore even when the view improved and I was able to see the last quarter mile or so of road I climbed.

    I was so into this climb that I didn't even want to stop when I noticed a leaf stuck between my front tire and fork. It was making a little noise, but I waited until a flatter section to stop and remove it. I try to avoid stopping on climbs, especially now that I'm on Strava and I'm curious how I do on climbs compared to others.

    I left the ranger station before the ride leader, but she still caught me right before the Summit Wall. Contrary to what I've read, this section only measured up to 17%. I have heard it has a max grade of 22%.

    Earlier in the climb, I noticed a rider slowing as he approached on his descent. It was DiabloScott. He rode past and turned around to climb back to me. I got to talk to him for a little bit before he continued his descent. Nice guy!

    Our other rider arrived at the summit with another male cyclist. He accompanied us on the descent and led us through quiet residential streets to Heather Farm. Big thanks to both of these riders and DiabloScott for helping us avoid Ygnacio!

    http://app.strava.com/rides/24210869

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/230683182

    Here's the video. Just for kicks I decided to include every cyclist I saw on the climb and descent. See if you notice any familiar faces

    You can see DiabloScott starting at 2:19.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRdSbEP7lTQ


    Views from the summit parking lot. It was a hazy day.







    I reached the bottom of the mountain first (too bad I couldn't do that on the climb!), so I killed some time by taking these two pics.



  2. #2
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Nice to meet you too.

    Thank you for bringing honor to The Mountain.

    I hope my previous videos helped with your preparation and enjoyment.

    As far as Strava, the Official Diablo Scott Segments set the standard - look for the Д in the name, which is my brand. example: Д Mt. Diablo: North Gate to Summit

    I usually hear 17 or 18% as the max grade on the Summit Wall. I know you do a lot of stuff steeper than that, but the first 3300 feet of climbing is supposed to soften your legs up a bit before you get there.
    Last edited by DiabloScott; 10-07-12 at 11:49 AM.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
    Nice to meet you too.
    Thank you for bringing honor to The Mountain.
    I hope my previous videos helped with your preparation and enjoyment.
    Oh yes, your videos definitely helped! I especially enjoyed your latest Summit Wall raw footage video. I think I felt like that too on that painful stretch!

    Quote Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
    As far as Strava, the Official Diablo Scott Segments set the standard - look for the Д in the name, which is my brand.
    example: Д Mt. Diablo: North Gate to Summit
    I'm 56th out of 104 women on that segment. Our ride leader is several spots up from me. There's definitely many more cyclists on those Bay Area climbs than on the ones I usually frequent in the Sierra foothills. That explains why there are 80 hidden segments on Mt. Diablo. That's the most I've ever seen!

  4. #4
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freighttraininguphill View Post
    There's definitely many more cyclists on those Bay Area climbs than on the ones I usually frequent in the Sierra foothills. That explains why there are 80 hidden segments on Mt. Diablo. That's the most I've ever seen!
    Exactly why the standards were necessary. Most of those others are duplicates or meaningless or poorly defined or poorly described. I let stand the two official races as those segments were well done and I have no claim to them - being the North Gate time trial and the Diablo Challenge.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiabloScott View Post
    I let stand the two official races as those segments were well done and I have no claim to them - being the North Gate time trial and the Diablo Challenge.
    Speaking of the Diablo Challenge, our ride leader told me that takes place today (you can hear us talking about it in the video starting at 13:46 shortly after we begin our descent).

  6. #6
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    I'm curious as hell how I would've ranked on Strava if I hadn't spent over five minutes stopped at the ranger station talking to the ride leader? I really need to do this climb again with absolutely zero stops!

  7. #7
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freighttraininguphill View Post
    I'm curious as hell how I would've ranked on Strava if I hadn't spent over five minutes stopped at the ranger station talking to the ride leader? I really need to do this climb again with absolutely zero stops!
    Well, you could just subtract five minutes from your time and see how many places you'd move up. But I suspect a lot of those other people's times include a break at the Junction as well.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

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    Nice job...Mt. Diablo is definitely my favorite local climb.

  9. #9
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    After seeing DiabloScott's latest Summit Wall video (his last one was from the helmet mount, this one is from the head tube mount), I decided to make a video from my ContourGPS as well. I had it mounted on the handlebars.

    This is just the Summit Wall climb. I am almost a minute slower than DiabloScott .

    http://contour.com/stories/mt-diablo...ourgps-footage

    Has anyone figured out how to get contour.com videos to embed here? I can embed them on roadbikereview.com and mtbr.com, but not here.

    Vimeo videos embed just fine. Here's our other rider climbing the Summit Wall, accompanied by another cyclist who descended with us and was nice enough to lead us through quiet residential streets to get back to Heather Farm Park. This kept us off the dangerous Ygnacio Valley Road.

    http://vimeo.com/51017236

  10. #10
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freighttraininguphill View Post
    After seeing DiabloScott's latest Summit Wall video (his last one was from the helmet mount, this one is from the head tube mount), I decided to make a video from my ContourGPS as well. I had it mounted on the handlebars.
    Well, I'm glad to see (hear) that it gave you a challenge.

    I can't embed Contour videos either - I make them into Vimeos if I need to.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

  11. #11
    Family, Health, Cycling Lanceoldstrong's Avatar
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    Nice job. I Have been enjoying your progress all summer. You sure like to climb. That is a good thing.
    In Climbing is Truth. (That is what my signature means, it is bastardized Latin)

    Mt. Diablo is such a classic and we locals are so lucky to have it in our back yard.
    My most direct route from Concord is a nice 8 mile warm up.
    Mt. Diablo welcomes all, now you are an honorary local. Welcome!
    In Escendo Est Verum

  12. #12
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    Thanks . Yes, I love climbing more than any other kind of cycling. I love long climbs, and on the Diablo climb I was able to get into a rhythm that just felt good. Not much suffering either, at least until the Summit Wall!

    I also loved seeing so many cyclists on the road. Around here there are plenty of cyclists, but not nearly as many. That's the only reason I have any QOMs or high Strava rankings around here at all. There's not that many women who are into suffering like the Bay Area riders.

    I wish I had a mountain in my backyard! I have a feeling the extra weight I'm carrying around would disappear with daily climbing. I lived in Auburn for six months about fifteen years ago, and I lost 14 pounds without even trying. That was because of all the climbing.

    At the beginning of the ride, I accidentally put my chest-mounted GoPro in photo mode. I caught that mistake right away, but not before a couple pictures were taken. Here's the best one.


  13. #13
    Loves to suffer freighttraininguphill's Avatar
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    I'll be riding Morgan Territory and the South Gate side of Mt. Diablo this Saturday with The Hammerin' Wheels and WAV Riders. If anyone wants to tag along, PM me.

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    Where is the best parking near to South Gate Road - midweek? As part of my trip in just on three weeks, I am planning to ride Sierra rd and Mt Hamilton in the morning and drive to Diablo and hit Mt Diablo in the afternoon, so looking for a good parking spot close to the start...
    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  15. #15
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalai View Post
    Where is the best parking near to South Gate Road - midweek? As part of my trip in just on three weeks, I am planning to ride Sierra rd and Mt Hamilton in the morning and drive to Diablo and hit Mt Diablo in the afternoon, so looking for a good parking spot close to the start...
    So you come all the way from Australia and then you can go home and tell your mates that you went up the easy side.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

  16. #16
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    They won't know that...

    Seriously only planned on Sth Gate as it is closer to South Bay. If I had the time or energy I would hit both ways that afternoon, but thinking this plus Mt Hamilton and Sierra rd might be too ambitious.

    Would you recommend Nth Gate over Sth Gate? If so, parking options for there as well would be appreciated.
    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  17. #17
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    FTP, sounds like you had a great ride!

    The "highest peaks" are on my post-retirement bucket list which, hopefully, I shall soon be attacking. Mt. Diablo sounds very special. I've done Freemont Peak (tandem "only"), Henry Coe (bunch of times), Mt. Hamilton (ran up more than 25 years ago!), and all the dead end, nasty ranch road climbs in San Benito County. Diablo, Tam, Hamilton and others await.
    Rick T
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  18. #18
    It's MY mountain DiabloScott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalai View Post
    They won't know that...

    Seriously only planned on Sth Gate as it is closer to South Bay. If I had the time or energy I would hit both ways that afternoon, but thinking this plus Mt Hamilton and Sierra rd might be too ambitious.

    Would you recommend Nth Gate over Sth Gate? If so, parking options for there as well would be appreciated.
    Everything is better on the North. No picnic areas or shady spots or flat (!) sections to ruin your climb. Parking is on Doncaster off of North Gate Road (shows up as N Gate on GPS maps) near the Mormon church.
    http://diabloscott.blogspot.com/

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    Thanks for the details - parking is legal on the road near the church? Just checked google satellite images and it looks like on street parking is okay...

    Given I'll be travelling so far to get there, I guess another few more minutes in the car to get to Nth Gate should be doable.
    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  20. #20
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    For the south gate, Creekridge Ct on the other side of Blackhawk from South gate rd is a good place to park if you can't park at the Athenian school.
    I think South Gate is fine. It's a little more scenic than North Gate.

    Whichever you do make sure you get started driving from San Jose by 1pm. By 3pm traffic gets much worse.
    It takes me about 50 minutes to get down Mt Ham from the top, and I am a reasonably fast descender who knows the road.

  21. #21
    moth -----> flame Beaker's Avatar
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    I'm also partial to South Gate - if anyone asks you your Diablo time it normally refers to the time from the Athenian School to the summit up South Gate Road. When the road levels off a bit, you simply push harder

    The concept of Hamilton, Sierra and Diablo would make for an epic day. Hopefully you're accustomed to epic days?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beaker View Post
    The concept of Hamilton, Sierra and Diablo would make for an epic day. Hopefully you're accustomed to epic days?
    Have done some big days in the past including big days in France over multiple HC climbs in 2011 (according to the Garmin - 2,100km 75,000m vert over 21 rides in 27 days that trip). In 2012 both sides of the Stelvio one day and Mortirolo and Gavia loop the following day, done on no specific hill training as it was a last minute decision to get to Bormio.

    Training consists of repeats on various local climbs. Wednesday nights threepeats of a local climb which takes just under 20 min per lap done z4. Plus have been driving a little further on weekends to ride threepeats of Mt Donna Buang (16.8km @6.4%) low z4 - so getting in 50.4km climbing in for the day.

    From last Sunday

    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  23. #23
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    Thanks ericm979. Can you confirm the name of the court - just checking the map and there is a Creekledge ct directly opposite Sth Gate rd. Also are the locals okay with people parking there? Is a weekday so don't expect many riders out and about.
    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  24. #24
    RacingBear UmneyDurak's Avatar
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    freighttraininguphill what did you use to mount contour? Thanks. and congrats on climbing Diablo.
    I see hills.... Bring them on!!!
    Stay calm and bring a towel.

  25. #25
    moth -----> flame Beaker's Avatar
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    Nice riding there Dalai. Carry on ;-)

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