Has anyone done it? I'm not worried about the elevation profile; however, I'm worried about starting at 4,000' already and how much harder that is then all the training I do at lower elevation. How would you train to make it so much less a suffer-fest
Or maybe a better question would be: How have you trained for riding at a higher elevation if you can't get to an elevation nearby of over 2,000 feet?
I wouldn't worry about it. Honestly, I'd be more worried about the total climbing than about the altitude. 7500 feet is nothing to sneeze at.
I have zero high-altitude training under my belt (unless you count climbing from sea level to 4,000 feet to be 'high altitude training') and just finished the death ride a few weeks ago, which is between 5700 and 8700 feet. Most people don't notice the altitude at all. At least for me, cycling isn't limited by my breathing. I do believe that you fatigue a bit more easily though; I started feeling like my legs had lost their pop as I approached 8-9k feet of climbing, which was earlier than I expected, but that could be attributed to anything really. It was no problem to finish the day, albeit at a slightly reduced pace for the last 5k.
Just eat a lot, stay hydrated (as you blow thru lots of liquid at altitude), and WEAR SUNSCREEN!
Bruce Gordon (Vintage); Merckx MX Leader (Campy 10); Schwinn Paramount (Fixed gear); Fat City Yo Eddy (MTB), Alex Singer (allrounder)
Don't worry about the altitude
I did this ride last year - it is the best century I have ever ridden and there were riders of all shapes and sizes. You have already received the best advice - stay hydrated, wear sunscreen and take a camera! The only thing I would add is just to remind you that you start early and give yourself plenty of time to finish. Stop and enjoy the view. It is not a race nor is it so high that you'll be gasping for breath for lack of O2. You will gasp at the view that constantly changes as you circle the lake. Almost all of the the last 25 miles are downhill so you can't ask for a better way to finish a long ride! Have a great time.