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Sherman Pass Labor Day Ridefest

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Sherman Pass Labor Day Ridefest

Old 09-05-17, 10:02 AM
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Sherman Pass Labor Day Ridefest

So a few friends and I took the opportunity to ride Sherman Pass last Saturday. Itís not something you easily do any time, as there arenít a lot of places to get water or food along the route.

It was craziness at the outset ... a 12AM wakeup call. But it was necessary for a 4:30 clip in to miss all of the predicted heat. With the help of some coffee and Mountain Dew, we made it to the start.



It starts with a climb up Nine Mile Canyon. Most of it isnít all that steep (6-8%), but near the end, there are some sections that are well in excess of 10%. Somehow or another, I got the notion of getting to the top without using my granny gear, so that meant doing the climb with a 39/28 combination. It was doable, but only at a higher cadence, and the higher speed that goes along with it.

The climb doesnít end there though ... itís a false summit. That meant several more miles of climbing until we descended down to Kennedy Meadows ... so named for JFK after a visit. This was our first break.



From there, we were headed to Blackrock Station .. some 13 miles away mostly uphill. Itís a beautiful climb.

The problem is that it was plagued by those little black flies. You know the ones. They fly in your glasses, in your face, and in your ears, and make a general nuisance of themselves. We have those in SoCal too, and you can generally outrun them if youíre able to make 8 MPH or so. As it turns out, the Kennedy Meadows variant of these flies are in a little better shape, as you had to go at least 8.5 MPH to leave them behind. I was capable of that most of the time (and when I wasnít, I just circled around and went downhill for a spell to lose them).

That gave me a good long rest at blackrock before the others caught up. I feasted on trail mix, chips, bananas, peanut butter, and all kinds of yummy stuff our SAGgers brought us. Yum.

From there, itís an up and down climb to Sherman Pass at 9200 feet, where we feasted on sandwiches and other yummy stuff. This was awesome.



Here we are at the top.

Unfortunately, itís not a pure descent from Sherman Pass. At that point, youíve done only 9,000 feet of the total of 12,000 on the route. So we had some more climbing in store. Along the way, thunderclouds formed. They drizzled on us a bit, keeping it cool.

Our next stop was again at Kennedy Meadows, to water and fuel up for the 2000 foot climb to 9 Mile Canyon. I walked through their General Store for a looksee. What a cool place.



Then off to do the climb. At this point, we were all taking our sweet time, just enjoying the cooler weather and great scenery.

Once at the top, we were treated to the descent down 9 Mile Canyon. This is always an awesome descent, but with the shadows cast by the setting sun through the gathering clouds, it was even more so. I stopped so many times coming down, my friends at the bottom thought I had flatted or crashed.



What a great day.
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Old 09-05-17, 05:42 PM
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Compare the second photo with the fifth photo and the same people don't look so happy LoL.

Great write up. Thanks.


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Old 09-06-17, 07:22 AM
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Excellent photos and captions as usual Victor. Someday I want to do that ride! Did it finish before sunset?

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Old 09-06-17, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR
Excellent photos and captions as usual Victor. Someday I want to do that ride! Did it finish before sunset?

Rick / OCRR
Absolutely. I was the last one down ... by a long shot ... and there was still at least two hours of sunlight left.

You should do this one next time, Rick. The part from Kennedy Meadows to the Sherman Pass and back remind me a lot of Angeles Crest ... except there is almost no traffic.
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Old 09-06-17, 09:34 PM
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Were you wearing black shorts?

That's different.
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Old 09-06-17, 10:18 PM
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12,000 feet? Only did that much one time and I felt it for a week. It does sound like a great ride, though. Maybe next time if I can get in some kind of shape again. Do you start off of 395 or is it still 14 at that point?
One time 8 of us paid a shuttle service to take us and our mountain bikes to Sherman pass and we rode singletrack back down to Kernville. It was memorable.
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Old 09-07-17, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by woodcraft
Were you wearing black shorts?

That's different.
Lol ... boy, do I have a reputation. There was a reason for that. It was supposed to be REALLY hot and humid, so I wore a pair of the old Performance Elite bike shorts. They're really sheer and ventilate really well.

Originally Posted by big john
12,000 feet? Only did that much one time and I felt it for a week. It does sound like a great ride, though. Maybe next time if I can get in some kind of shape again. Do you start off of 395 or is it still 14 at that point?
One time 8 of us paid a shuttle service to take us and our mountain bikes to Sherman pass and we rode singletrack back down to Kernville. It was memorable.
I think it's US395 at that point. The 14 and 395 merge at Brady's. We just park out in the dirt lot behind the Shell station.

You should do the next one! It's a rare treat ... not the kind of ride you'd want to do without SAG support.
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