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Rock Store Climb

Old 03-02-13, 11:39 PM
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Rock Store Climb

I'm considering the Cruising the Conejo century ride in the Spring, but I find the stats on the "famous" Rock Store Climb somewhat daunting. I'm sure many of you have done it, and I'd like some perspective. Here's the context: I'm 74 yrs. old, ride 5000 miles a year, reasonably good endurance but I'm not a particularly strong climber--too old, too heavy. I do several centuries every year--Cool Breeze, Lighthouse, Windmill, Palm Springs--but have done none w/more than 5000' of climbing.

So what do you think? Should I just accept my limitations (which I don't mind at all), or give it a try.
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Old 03-03-13, 01:02 AM
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Get a good cardiac angio before the event and if its clear than have fun gutting it out.
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Old 03-03-13, 11:00 AM
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I thought you had done this one before years ago?

I do RS multiple times a month, as it's nearby. Lots of newbies from our shop ride do that hill. It's about 2-1/2 miles. It starts with an easy section just past the store, slight uphill. As you get to the first bumps, it ramps up somewhat with 1/4 mile of 5-6%. The climb flattens out a mile or so in, with a little recovery possible and only 2-3% incline. It then becomes a series of ramps in the upper curves. I find the toughest section to be the last 1/2 mile when the legs are screaming and we hit 9% sections.

Given how many miles you are riding, and the success you've had on other centuries, I would go for it. Will it be hard? Yes. You'll have to battle. But what's the worst that can happen? You'll stop or walk some of it. You won't be alone. Ever year there are walkers on RS at some point during Cruising. Just pace yourself. But only you know your limitations.

You're just in Pasadena. Stick the bike in the car on Saturday, park over at Paramount Ranch on Cornell and come pre-ride the area. I did a lot of that the first time I rode Cruising and I was also intimidated by RS. Come do our shop rides and learn the routes.

Now what you didn't mention, and may be unaware of, is that RS is not the last climb on the route. Once you complete RS, you get a short respite and then a 1/2 mile climb on Mulholland to a rest stop near Encinal. Once you drop down Encinal, you'll catch some additional hills before getting the long downhill to PCH.

The routes for Cruising have changed this year so be aware of that.

For a look at the RS climb, go here:

It starts a few minutes in but gives a reasonable idea. I don't know who shot the video but funny enough, I'm in it riding in front of the videographer!
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Old 03-03-13, 11:57 AM
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Have you heard about Mulholland Challenge? Same general area, also goes up that climb, but, with 13000' of total elevation gain, RS does not really stand out. Last year, two oldest finishers were 71 and 73. They didn't go particularly fast but they both finished ahead of me (i'm in my 30's.).
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Old 03-03-13, 11:58 AM
don't try this at home.
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The event web page has a link to the ridewithgps 100 mile route.

You can drag a section of the red elevation graph to zoom in and see stats on that part of the ride--click the Metrics tab at the right. Then you can hover over the graph to see grades at that point. (ridewithgps grades are estimated from known elevation points, so local grades can be off, but the averages are usually pretty accurate.)

After a few short hills, the main climb is about 830 feet in 2.2 miles, average 7.2% grade. It doesn't appear to get steeper than 10%. I'd have to stand on a lot of the climb.

Last edited by rm -rf; 03-03-13 at 12:06 PM.
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Old 03-04-13, 10:20 AM
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I would say the rock store climb feels harder then GMR but it is much shorter. It is also hot all the times I have ridden it. I wouldnt let it imtimidate you.
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