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Old 07-15-09, 01:35 PM   #1
smurf hunter
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RAMROD 2009 Course Change

From http://blog.redmondcyclingclub.org/?p=198:

"A final decision has been made on the RAMROD 2009 course.

There is damage to Stevens Canyon road that will not be repaired in time for RAMROD. We will instead run a detour around that section of the Park by using Skate Creek Road.

With the new course, you will again start in Enumclaw at an altitude of about 723 ft. The ride will proceed as in prior years over flat terrain and rollers towards Eatonville, 32 miles. There will be a water stop, coffee and bakery items available there. The ride then proceeds towards the National Park until it reaches Ashford, which is at elevation 1833. A full food stop is provided at the Wildwood resort at about 55 miles in.

The ride then turns onto Skate Creek Road, which peaks at about 2600 ft. and then descend to a water stop in Packwood (78 miles, 1000 ft elevation). Riders then proceed east on US 12 and immediately start to climb. Turn left onto SR 123 and a food stop at about 85 miles and 1600 ft.

The ride continues north on SR 123, with a water stop at Deer Creek (98 miles, 3550 ft) and to Cayuse Pass (101, 4685). We then descend as usual to Crystal Road and the Deli food stop (110, 2858).

We then turn right and climb to the top of Crystal Road (116, 4365) and return by the same road to the Deli area. Riders have the option of stopping again for food and refreshment.

The ride then proceeds as usual to the finish at Enumclaw High School, again proceeding along Hy 410 to Mud Mountain Dam and then through local streets to the finish.

Total distance is about 160 miles and the amount of climbing is roughy equivalent to the traditional course. This is truly a RAMROD course.

While we will have to miss the Paradise area this year, Skate Creek Road is a beautiful place to ride a bike. The roads are for the most part in great condition and traffic should be less of an issue than usual.

We anticipate being able to return to the traditional course in 2010."

As a RAMROD rookie, I'm not certain what to make of this. I'm sure the scenery of Paradise would've been spectacular (assuming a clear day), but maybe this route will be easier? The Crystal Mt. up and back seems like a temptation to skip over if one was bonking.

I just completed the 1 day STP, but am still a little anxious about RAMROD having never done it.
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Old 07-15-09, 02:37 PM   #2
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From what I've heard the Crystal climb is a bit tougher than Paradise, but it sounds like the overall gain is roughly the same as the usual course.

I wouldn't worry too much about finishing - the grades aren't too steep, at least on the old course.

And the "extra" part of Cayuse that we're doing isn't very steep, so that's not too bad. I think it'll be a fun ride, can't wait!

I'll be starting/ending in Seattle though, so it'll probably be a 18-ish hour day for me.

See you on the road!
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Old 07-15-09, 03:56 PM   #3
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Anybody thinking about skipping the crystal mountain climb, and heading up sunrise instead? Might be a bit more scenic, you can get water at the base of sunrise and at the top.
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Old 07-15-09, 05:33 PM   #4
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I did Sunrise a few weeks ago. I started just before the park entrance. I didn't have a computer with me, but it took more than 90 minutes for me to climb. I intentionally took it easy and wanted to keep my heart rate low. I also have some knee problems, so try to avoid standing on climbs or other high impact type mashing.

Any time estimates on how long it'd take to ascend Crystal as a comparison? Or do we know the distance and grade specifics?
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Old 07-15-09, 05:47 PM   #5
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I did sunrise from greenwater and really enjoyed it. About 2 1/2 from the bottom. I plotted sunrise and crystal on bikeroutetoaster, the elevations and mileage are probably off a little bit, but it gives some scope.

Crystal




Sunrise

Last edited by dmoney19; 07-15-09 at 06:04 PM.
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Old 07-15-09, 09:45 PM   #6
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Crystal is 1600' of climbing, sunrise is about 2700'. I did both the year Ramrod was only on the east side. The pavement on crystal is the suck - it's not that bad going up, but it's pretty rough on the descent. Sunrise is a lot more climbing (took my 95 minutes last time), but the pavement is great because it gets no traffic in the winter.

They're pretty comparable in terms of slope, so you could expect spend perhaps 30 minutes longer going up sunrise.
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Old 07-27-09, 03:50 PM   #7
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Check this out - talk about interesting timing

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/htm...yndication=rss
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Old 07-28-09, 11:41 AM   #8
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Bah..... but the route will still go up crystal at this late date, I am sure. bummer.
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Old 07-28-09, 11:43 AM   #9
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It says open by 5pm... that is little to late for us.
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