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  1. #1
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Ranchos, NCCC, SDBC, or Swami's?

    Do any of the So Cal forumites ride with (or have ridden with) these groups? I'm thinking that, for the sake of sanity, scheduling, and motivation, I want to work up to a routine weekly ride that is both challenging, rewarding, and fun. "Training without purpose" is one of the biggest de-motivators for me.

    I was out last Saturday, and not-so-subtly passed by the Swami's 'A' group (Hey, I was 30 miles in, and they were about 8). I have no idea if I could have hung with them if we'd started together. But I'd finished my 52 mile route in just over 3 hours (17 mph average) that covered much the same track as the Swami's ride. (Del Dios, RSF, Elfin Forest, Harmony Grove)

    The fact is that I nearly always ride alone and don't really have a barometer as to my fitness or speed. I'm a bit intimidated to just 'audit' a group without knowing where I might stand. Are there any 'rules of thumb' ie: be comfortable with 40 miles in 2 hours on varied terrain? Climb a 10% grade at 13 mph without breaking a sweat?

    Also, Ranchos starts about 5 miles from my house, so would be really convenient for me. Their rides are different every week, which is also nice.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
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  2. #2
    Senior Member GP's Avatar
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    You should be able to email the clubs to see what the average speeds on rides are.

    I recommend going with the club that is most convenient for you. I'm a NCCC member but I've only ridden with them once because of scheduling.

  3. #3
    Senior Member bigdraft's Avatar
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    I've done the Swami's and SDBC rides and of the two Swami's is the hardest (probably out of all four rides also) and draws the best talent. So be prepared to get dropped. That being said they do regroup at a church as you come into Escondido.

    The SDBC rides tends to be larger in size with not so challenging terrain. But it too has it's fast riders who will set a fast tempo. They also regroup, twice if I am not mistaken.

    check out this link to the Socal website that gives you the basic 411 you're probably looking for.

    http://www.socalcycling.com/Group%20...GroupRides.htm

    good luck

    Oh yeah, don't forget to check out the Wednesday Ride that goes from Encinitas up to San Clemente and back thru Camp Pendleton

  4. #4
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    I usually ride every Saturday in the SDBC ride; in the C-(minus) group.

    C ride is where they teach you rotating pace lines and anything above that they expect you to know how to ride in a group so as not to cause a crash.

    If you're new to group riding, they recommend you to start at C (regular) for the first time, then you can jump up to the faster groups later.

  5. #5
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    I need to start doing group rides, riding solo is getting a lil old. I'm not sure what group to get into or nothing.

  6. #6
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone
    I need to start doing group rides, riding solo is getting a lil old. I'm not sure what group to get into or nothing.
    I'm on the fence between Ranchos and NCCC, just because of their proximity. You're in RB? Ranchos leaves from the North County Fair. NCCC leaves from Old Restaurant Row in San Marcos.

    It seems to me that Ranchos is more race/training oriented, with its members really taking riding and fitness seriously...whereas NCCC is a bit more laid-back and social.
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  7. #7
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    actually I just moved to Esco last month, by Esco High. I work down the street from the rally point at the Church by auto parkway. I always see riders there when i have to work on saturdays.

    I normally ride up North on Center City and do a loop off there or grind up Mt Meadows Road for a mouth full of cursing.

  8. #8
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsigone
    I normally ride up North on Center City and do a loop off there or grind up Mt Meadows Road for a mouth full of cursing.

    Cool. I'm sure we'll pass each other sometime. I'm by the Wild Animal Park, so it's my special rides that take me up thataway. Mt. Meadows is a grind (9.5% - 1 mile), but Old Castle, Gopher Canyon, Lilac, etc. are all fun. I do Wohlford and Highland Valley all the time. I'll be the guy on the red, white, and blue Litespeed, sweating all over the place, going about 2 mph slower than the groups I hope to ride with.
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    Rule #5 : Never argue with an idiot: those watching might not be able to tell the difference.
    Rule #13: Always make sure she has a better time than you do.

  9. #9
    Senior Member GP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mo'Phat
    Cool. I'm sure we'll pass each other sometime. I'm by the Wild Animal Park, so it's my special rides that take me up thataway. Mt. Meadows is a grind (9.5% - 1 mile), but Old Castle, Gopher Canyon, Lilac, etc. are all fun. I do Wohlford and Highland Valley all the time. I'll be the guy on the red, white, and blue Litespeed, sweating all over the place, going about 2 mph slower than the groups I hope to ride with.
    I'm out in the Old 395/Lilac/Old Castle area several times per month. I'll look for you.

  10. #10
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    I must be riding at times no one else is on the road. I see a couple guys here and there going the other direction when I go up the Center city.

    Highland valley is ROUGH. I only done that once and that was last year, Banady Canyon Road is a fun decent so it was worth the pain. I want to try it again and maybe take it to the 67 next time and make a loop to Scripps. Iduno, we'll see with this heat.

  11. #11
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Yeah, HVR is pretty tough...there's the initial climb with the switchbacks, but once you get on top of that, there's just two sections of (I believe) 15% or so for a few hundred yards that just crush your soul. The rest of it is just steady rollers and climbing. Very hard to get a rhythm going. I've done it a bunch of times and every time, I think "Never again". But I always go back to it. The descent is just too much fun. 50+ mph down Bandy Canyon is doable.

    I may be doing the Tour De Poway on Oct. 1st (still don't know), and HVR is a pretty good workout.

    I hardly ever go up Centre City...ever. I don't know why. I'll go up Bear Valley, then Citrus, then El Norte, Ash, Broadway, Jesmond Dene to get up North...or to E.Valley, up Lake Wohlford, West on Woods Valley, N. on Valley Center, W. on Lilac.

    Fewer signals, and more variety than CC.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
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    Rule #5 : Never argue with an idiot: those watching might not be able to tell the difference.
    Rule #13: Always make sure she has a better time than you do.

  12. #12
    Cat None SDRider's Avatar
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    A guy I work with rides with the Swami's group a couple times a week. He keeps trying to get me to join him on one of their rides. I don't know that I could keep up though. He can drop me easily on climbs but seems to think I'd do just fine. I'll have to go out and ride with them one of these weekends and see for myself I guess.

    He says they're a good group of people though.

  13. #13
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    He says they're a good group of people [that'll drop you and laugh] though.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
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    Rule #5 : Never argue with an idiot: those watching might not be able to tell the difference.
    Rule #13: Always make sure she has a better time than you do.

  14. #14
    Senior Member bigdraft's Avatar
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    "but once you get on top of that, there's just two sections of (I believe) 15% or so for a few hundred yards that just crush your soul"

    Back in the late 80s, there was a dog that lived across the street right where you're talking about. Just when you were wondering if you were gonna pull it off (the climb), this curr would charging out of his yard and guys would just freak. This would of course give the stuggling cyclinst an added pop of adreneline, which if I remember correctly, was sorely needed right about that point of the climb.

  15. #15
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mo'Phat
    I hardly ever go up Centre City...ever. I don't know why. I'll go up Bear Valley, then Citrus, then El Norte, Ash, Broadway, Jesmond Dene to get up North...or to E.Valley, up Lake Wohlford, West on Woods Valley, N. on Valley Center, W. on Lilac.
    If you go that route up north, there is a small detour on Broadway a lil after passing the HS, you can follow the detour for the extra 1 1/2 miles or dismount and walk in the dirt for about 30-40 yards to continue on Broadway. I live in the apartment complex right near the construction site. Every morning I see a old guy (60ish) riding a nice Orba CF roadie.....makes me drool everyday

    For my lunch rides, I start near the autoparkway, R on Mission, L on Center City, R on Jesmond for the nice downhill, R on Broadway, R on Country Club, L on El Norte, R on Center City, R on Mission, L on Andreason and Back to work. I don't know how many miles it is (prolly close to 18-19 miles), I lost my CPU on the coast a while ago and its funner to ride w/o all the numbers so i havn't replaced it.

    I havn't tried a Valley Center ride yet, I don't know if I can deal with the heat East of Citrus. Today was warm enough for me but at least there was some head wind to slow me down. Doing an after work group ride at lake hodges on the MTB. They normally like to head east to the plateau climb and back. We meet a group last week that told us about a trail that continues near Bandy Road up to the top od HVR and down the grade and cross the lake back to the cars. I might try that route tonight to see how it is. I'll google earth the route first though so I don't get lost.

  16. #16
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Getting lost is all the more fun. Can't get too lost anyway.

    Today was warm enough for me but at least there was some head wind to slow me down.
    This made me chuckle...like saying, "Sure, she was ugly, but at least she smelled bad." Not seeing much upside to hot with a head wind.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
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  17. #17
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdraft
    "but once you get on top of that, there's just two sections of (I believe) 15% or so for a few hundred yards that just crush your soul"

    Back in the late 80s, there was a dog that lived across the street right where you're talking about. Just when you were wondering if you were gonna pull it off (the climb), this curr would charging out of his yard and guys would just freak. This would of course give the stuggling cyclinst an added pop of adreneline, which if I remember correctly, was sorely needed right about that point of the climb.
    Probably 'charged out of his yard' in front of a truck. RIP, you foul motivator.

    Speaking of danger...a motorcyclist was killed this past weekend on HVR when he lost it on a curve near Archie Moore and hit a truck. I've flirted with the centerline a few times myself. Condolences if anyone here knew the guy.

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/n...mi6briefs.html - 2nd item...right in the middle of the day, too. Only about 3 hours after I passed the exact same spot. 3rd item is another motorcyclist.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
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  18. #18
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mo'Phat

    Not seeing much upside to hot with a head wind.
    exactly

    But it does help with the sweat but your working more too so not sure if it cancels each other out. It's just one of those days that you have to suck it up and just ride. Just drink lots of fluid and try to stay as aero as possible which is kinda hard at 6'2. My body has a built in parasail

    Sad to hear about the biker, I didn't know alot of bikes hit that road alot, you'd think they would be up the 78 more or Palomar Mt.

  19. #19
    Steel is Real. markw's Avatar
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    I'd recommend starting with the SDBC ride. C or B depending on how fast you are. C regroups a bit, and the've lately divided it into a C+, C and C-. You can start there and move up to the B at your leisure. Swami's ride is for hard core hammerheads, and is probably the fastest ride in town, SDBC A ride would be next.

  20. #20
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    I think I'm gonna go to the NCCC ride on Sunday from San Marcos. I might have a buddy with me, so i'll know more tomorrow night. He's coming down from LBC.

    Anyone else want to try this ride with me? I don't know the route, it's not on their page but they have a meeting spot and time. Behind Acapulco’s and Fish House Vera Cruz in San Marcos at 8am.

    Someone mentioned the climb to Lake Wolford on another thread I think. I googled it and it's 8 miles from my house to the parking lot with about 800ft elevation difference, so I drove up there to see how the side of the road is and the difficulty. Doens't seem TOOOO bad, the suffering will be on the bottom and get flatter in the middle. The DH is gonna be a blast I'm gonna challenge this hill early morning before the GF wakes up....ssssshhhhhh it's her birthday

  21. #21
    Nut Job jedi_rider's Avatar
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    My two cents...

    Swami's is the fastest of all four. It's basically a race without a fee. It draws the best talent around town. Occasionally, you will see Pro Roadies and Triathletes during the off season.

    It's also safer than the SDBC A ride in both route, road conditions, and personnel.

    SDBC riders constantly jockey for position and has a mix of skill levels and it's not unusual for a bonehead to cause a crash.

    I've never ridden with NCCC or Ranchos...
    Any time I'm going up a hill, I know I'm headed in the right direction.

  22. #22
    Steel is Real. markw's Avatar
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    Unless you're FAST, you will get dropped quickly on the Swami's ride. I just did the SDBC B route with the fast C group this morning. Total ride time was 2:17, loop according to my computer was 44.9, according to what I ploted on routeslip it was 43.08 either way, the pace was 18-19mph average. Took the Corsa, and surprisingly I was passing people uphill. On the flats and descents it was chase the funny bike. Gave them a carrot for paceline practice, also on La Costa, and down the coast. It was a good ride, and everyone got a workout. I try to stay clear of the pacelines on the bent. Like someone else said mixed experience levels. The SDBC route is a good one if you want to ride solo, or with some buddies. Route profile looks surprisingly like part of that poway century.

  23. #23
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markw
    Unless you're FAST, you will get dropped quickly on the Swami's ride.
    I guess that's the big question...how fast is fast. Does fast SOLO equate to fast in a group? I can maintain a fairly fast average speed for distance, but not for 40+ miles. I wouldn't think the group riders could either...so say you take a Swami's rider...what's the time they would probably ride for the same route solo?

    When I saw them, they were in a big bunch, so I could see that some were just hanging on.

    Thanks for the SDBC report. 'Preciate it.
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    Rule #13: Always make sure she has a better time than you do.

  24. #24
    got the climbing bug jsigone's Avatar
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    I wasn't able to ride with the NCCC group like I had hoped. My friend from LBC didn't bring his bike, so I just did a short ride and climbed up to Lake Wolford for the first time. Maybe I can fill in to their group on the 24th. I have a MTB @ big bear this sunday.

  25. #25
    Scum, Freezebag! Mo'Phat's Avatar
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    I'm so ashamed. I went up Mtn. Meadows yesterday (thinking I could come down Welk View, but alas...no) and actually had to stop and rest. That surprised me. Dangit, I've got to lose some weight.
    Mo'Phat's Rules to Live By:
    Rule #3 : Never wrestle with a pig: you both get dirty, and the pig likes it.
    Rule #5 : Never argue with an idiot: those watching might not be able to tell the difference.
    Rule #13: Always make sure she has a better time than you do.

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