To add to Rob’s report: we had 13 Descenders (including a new rider, Jeff) at the start but picked up Matt Babb at Poway Scripps climb. So it was 14.
Actually, 16 if you count cameos by Garet Heintz and Chris Horner. Garet and I rode the final few miles along Poway Scripps.
Chris Horner was late to our starting point, but went by us in the opposite direction while being motorpaced at approximately 43mph. He may have been hunting for one of the Rick’s KOMs. Chris, next time read Descenders Rides calendar a bit more carefully – we leave promptly at 8:00.
By the way, we did have a few more Descender encounters – I briefly chatted with Voris at the start who was still recovering from his cold and wasn’t riding but was in good spirits. While riding to 7-11 I was also honked at and yelled at (“Get off the road! Cyclists are a Menace!”) by Hodges who was driving to the start after dropping off Sam.
The ride was quite animated, especially by Matt and Jeff who were superstrong all day today.
We had some bad luck with mechanicals today – Rob got a broken spoke on 67 descent, early on into the ride, and on the way back from Alpine Rick got a flat too. Four of us (Hodges, Steve, Yi-Shiou and I) rode on to El Capitan reservoir, while several others went straight home. Matt Babb turned off earlier. We hoped to run into Rick, Jeff, Matt Davis, Bernie and Ernst on our out-and-back El Capitan loop, but I got a text from Ernst describing it as “flat-fest” – there were more flats. Only four of us made it to El Capitan, completing the entire ride.
The four of us rode together to the bottom of 67 climb, where we found Rick who had yet another flat and was waiting for his wife to pick him up. Hodges suggested Rick takes his wheel and Hodges gets a pick up from Rick’s wife. I would gladly take him up on this offer as well!
We separated on the climb but at the top as I was about to descend Poway Scripps I ran into (or rode into) Garet who was doing a short loop as he was recovering from illness. I was tired and it was windy so it was great to have company.
I made it back to Voris/Hodges with 78 miles, official distance for Alpine loop – Hodges did some extra sneaky riding despite surely being dog-tired, to get 88 miles for the day. Highest mileage award of the day goes to Hodges.
Selected Photos are attached, for more see here:
You should have come!