Well Sunday was my long anticipated ride over to the coast and back. First off Ill say the weather could not have been better. We met up in the morning at 9am. We BS'd for a while and then headed out. The first 7 miles was rolling to flat , a good warm-up for my under used legs. A pace-line soon formed and the pace was picking up. Since my back had been bothering me I stayed back a bit as I knew the first big climb of the day was just ahead, and I was still warming up. We arrived at the base of Old La Honda Rd, a 4.5 mile climb with better then 1000 feet of climbing. Last time I rode this climb I took off to quick and suffered. Not to make the same mistake again I was wearing my HR monitor. I went out ahead to get some pics of the group coming up the grade. I got my HR up in the 185 zone and pulled off to await the group. Here they come. The only problem is I was taking the pictures and I was also the slowest rider in the group. After the group passed I continued the climb. My friend Thomas had dropped back to coach me. I was getting my HR to high so he slowed me down. I was very grateful for this, as this ride would take its toll through out the day. I reached the top in about 27 minutes, but felt good. The next 5 miles or so would be fast decents, ohhh what fun. This is where I can get with the front of the group. Andy rides a fixie so he was the first to be spit out the back.
We flew through the town of La Honda in abouot 5 seconds and made a left on some road,I wasnt paying attention. We had a discussion about the route and decided to take the tougher longer direction. Better to climb and decend the ride flat boring roads. I felt even better on this climb, and I was able to keep all but 2 of the 5 other riders in sight. This decent was a kick, fast and twisty. I worked my way up to the two leaders and tucked in between them. We got to the bottom and rode in a liine through 6 miles of rollers. Thomas was pulling us into a head wind between 22 and 24mph. My HR was at 170 drafteing him. I hung there for about 5 miles and had to give in, I still had plenty of climbing left. We reached town and took a break at a bakery.
After our break we headed up Stage Rd, once again climbing. I felt pretty good here, and the grades were a bit milder then the previous lung busters. I fell back but really wasnt concerned as my speed was a decent 7 mph and my HR was a modest 165. As we decended Stage Rd the coast came into view and we were on Hwy 1 for about a mile. We regrouped at Tunitas Creek Rd. This is what I wanted to ride. I had heard so much aboout this climb. Well it was everything and more that I had heard. It starts out easy enough, just rolling along through the coountry side. I took some pictures as we were riding. My legs were beginning to feel tired by this point, but I fely ok. As we rode into the dense forest of Redwoods the road turned up, and up some more, and again more. Some idiot had painted "only 6 miles to go" in the middle of the road. Great, Id rather not know how much further it is. I kept chugging away. The group was tiring, I could tell because they were not pulling away from me any longer. Well Andy (fixie) and John were long gone, but the others were all in sight and I was actually gaining a bit on them.
The road pitched upa bit more and I had to stand, this is when mt legs really started to ache. I didnt even see that horse that kicked me in the thighs, but I sure couold feel it. I kept climbing and looking at my speed. 5 mph with 5 miles to go, great another hour of this pain. Thomas dropped back and began talking to me. I told him I was aching in my legs. He said he was hurting too, liar! Made me feel better anyway. Before I knew it the road showed some mercy and leveled to about 2% grade. Whew, thanks. 3 more miles of this slight grade. My legs were aching more and more. Thomas took off in a sprint and I knew we were close, I had reached the top. It felt sooooo good to stand on the ground, my legs were grateful for a short break. The tough climbs were complete.
Across the hwy was Kings Mt Road, downhill. I had heard alot about this road also. I was still hurting and not really wanting to go too fast, but that all changed quickly. This was an awesome decent. All of the sudden my body was no longer hurting. I began passing other riders and the chase was on. This road was very twisty and fast. I passed several risers and caught up to Thomas. I was smiling from ear to ear by the tiime we reached the bottom. Wow, that made it all worth it.
The rest of the ride was rolling hills back to the car. I felt ok at first. But aboout 5 miles before the car, my stomach was growling. Oh-oh. Bonk-I hit the Wall! I was done. I kept riding but I had slowed way down. I grabbed a bar from my jersey and engulfed it like a starving dog. I got back to the car completely spent. What a great day and a great ride.
Not the furthest Ive ridden but real close. The saddle time and elevation were well beyond what I had ever done before. Heres a few pics and the motion based download.