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Forest Hill and the CorkScrew

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Old 06-01-08, 04:51 PM
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BenRidin
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Forest Hill and the CorkScrew

Rode out of Forest Hill yesterday with 6 others for a 75 mile loop. If you like hills, this is a great ride for you.

Descending about 9.5 miles down to the North fork of the American River, we drop off frozen water bottles in the shade of a spring. You're going to need these for the climb out of the canyon six hours later.

An easy climb takes you to the Oxbow Res. turnoff. Down you go again to the Ralston Power House and the fun begins. Locals call this 2200' 4 mile climb the "Corkscrew". We've all done climbs like this. If you have done Iowa Hill, you get the flavor of this climb. Here, in the beginning of the Sierra's it's quiet and beautiful. The top of the ride greets you with a "Top of Diablo" 22% grade for about a mile. Then back to the usual 7% for the rest of the climb.

You're on top of Ralston Rd. Rolling terrain and beautiful views are taking you higher and higher. Eventually you will end up at French Meadows Reservoir. On Ralston Rd there are mile markers spray painted on the Rd. After mile marker 20, there is much welcomed spring coming out of the hill. Refill your bottles here. It will be enough to get you back to the stash of bottles you left at the bottom of the canyon.

Eventually you get to an intersection. Going right takes you to Hell Hole Reservoir. This will add an additional 35 miles to the ride. We opted to go left today. Our destination sits around 5200'. Cool breezes and cloud covers keep the temps low. It can get pretty cold so be prepared.

The final climb up to 6000' goes by quickly and soon you ready for the long 18 mile descent down to the canyon and your water stash. The corners are swoopy enough where you rarely have to use your brakes. If you can, take a time out along the way to enjoy the vista's. I wish I had brought my camera.

Back to the stash of cold water bottles and your ready for the hour long climb out of the canyon. By now the cold IPA on ice is calling your name, begging you to pedal faster...harder...

I would recommend this ride to anyone that wants to get away from the city, but doesn't want to drive all the way to Tahoe area. If you like a lot of cars on your rides, then this wouldn't be for you. On our ride, we were not passed by any cars at all. However, I've been on this route where there were a lot of cars...four total.





Enjoy your ride...

BR
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Old 06-01-08, 07:24 PM
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BlastRadius
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Originally Posted by BenRidin View Post
22% grade for about a mile.
Holy heart attack

Where is this ride? Forest Hill doesn't come up on Google Maps.
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Old 06-01-08, 07:35 PM
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I remember the corkscrew wall in the "worlds toughest century" . I think we hit it at about 75 miles and it was really tough. Probably the hardest climb I have tried on Pavement in California. Iowa hill is a really good climb too (also in the "world toughest century") and it really drags on for miles and miles after the steep bit.

Felix Wong sums it up well. I rode it that year too.

http://felixwong.com/2002/09/worlds-toughest-century/


Probably going to do the Auburn Century again this year to get my IOWA hill fix.

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Old 06-01-08, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by BlastRadius View Post
Holy heart attack

Where is this ride? Forest Hill doesn't come up on Google Maps.
foresthill, CA
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