On the way home from a family camping trip and noticed some die-hards going up 243 towards Idyllwild. Two questions:
1) Anybody from here?
2) If so, how do you not get killed? I was white knuckling in my truck as the locals and motorcyclists were flying up and down that hill. No shoulder, sand and very winding roads.
one of the few roads in so cal i would not ride uphill unless certain conditions were met. it would either have to be part of a charity ride and be closed, have a very large group on the ascent
or be riding during one of those days where everyone is asleep or doing something else (ie watching the super bowl).
have descended it tho and it's a blast! road is in better condition than the similarly conditioned hwy 74 into palm desert.
the above disclaimer only applies to the stretch of the 243 between the 10 fwy and the pine cove area. i find the portion between idyllwild and hwy 74 pretty calm, never really steep,
fairly light traffic (compared with the part to/from the desert) and with a decent shoulder in places. pavement's not super on the descent but it's okay. what is fantastic is the ascent/decent from the eastern edge of hemet up hwy 74 to the 74/243 junction. most of it just got repaved and the views of the mtns separating idyllwild/palm springs-the san jacinto wilderness-get
better as you ascend, especially the last 2 miles. the ascent is mostly a 3.5-4.5% grade so nothing too hard but it is about 10 miles. combined with the 6 mile ascent to idyllwild from
the 74/243 junction, it's a pretty scenic and worthwhile climb. decent rocks tho. between the view, freshly repaved road and the big, sweeping turns, you scarcely need to apply the brakes.
i guess it's a matter of comfort and risk-management. i do rides that friends wouldn't and occasionally-like-you did-come across other riders where i say a little prayer as i pass them in a car
because they are doing something in a place/time i wouldn't.
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