Mussey Grade and Pamo Ride Report-4 March 2017
by Rob Verfurth
Riders: Larry, Rick W, Hodges, Sheehan, Flo, Bernie, Hermann, Jeremy, Lou & Hyuan (new local riders), Cresap on Mussey Grade and Rob
There was no one at the 56 bike path corner, so I rode over alone to Spring Meadow to get Hodges. It was a brisk morning and Mike was putting on two sets of gloves. We cruised to the 7-11 store to meet the group. On the way there, while riding on Poway Road, Mike Farkas gave us a horn honk and a wave as he was driving westbound for his own biking event. The group was good sized at the start with lots of Descenders out for a group ride; we also had two new riders–Lou and Hyuan. Hodges gave us his medical update so we would be sure to not leave him on the side of the road after a crash with the potential for a bleed-out. After his medical education, we spun off for SPP.
Larry, Bernie, Rick W and Flo kept the pace civil on the climb to Highway 67. We regrouped at the top and were joined by Hermann & Jeremy; we now had 11 riders. The pace was quick along 67 and I fell off the back of the leaders. We all waited at the bend by Mount Woodson before heading fast to Mussey. Larry, Rick W, Flo, Bernie, Jeremy and Hermann sped along in a paceline. I was last man in the group while the others never made contact. They took the corner at Mussey and I continued to lose ground. I descended Mussey alone with Sheehan catching me right near the bottom. The lead guys were already climbing back up. Sheehan and I rode up Mussey together and were joined by Hodges and the new guys who rode up with us. We met Cresap at Mussey and the group got back together at Highway 67. Cresap and Sheehan had to bail so the rest of us kept up the paceline along Dye Road.
Hodges had volunteered to keep the new riders swept up while the rest of the group was off the front and on our way to Pamo. There were a number of riders who had never made the descent of Pamo so we discussed speed safety, especially on the off camber turns. The group sped safely down the descent and stopped where the road ends to enjoy the beautiful views. It was super lush and green in the valley; we almost hated to leave. Unfortunately, the steep ascent beckoned. We spread out on the climb and regrouped at the top.
I took one last photo of the guys who had made it to the top and had to ride on to get home. I decided to go down the Ramona Grade and up Bandy to HVR and loop around 4S, a more scenic route. The rest of the guys went back into Ramona to get water, retraced their ride along Dye Road and 67, before breaking up and going down SPP and other routes home. I got in 72 miles with 4,600 feet of climbing. I know Larry and Bernie were approaching 90+ miles by the time they got home. The early portions of the ride were fun and fast paced. My pootle home was slower, none-the-less a great day on the bike. Photos are in the link below.