120.68 miles, 7:09 moving time, 2.907 ft elevation gain.
Anticipating a warm day, we started at Encanto Park in Duarte at 6am. Zero-Dark-Thirty. Wow it was the middle of the night when we arrived. It was overcast and cool. That was nice change from the extreme heat, at least for the first half of the ride. We had 13 riders in for the LONG haul.
Lynda, David, Kali, Blake, GT, Julie, Bob, Leanne, Steve, Joe, Gregg, Sven, Gregg.
We started on the San Gabriel River Trail and headed up Azusa Canyon Hwy 39 to Cogswell Dam (or 12 miles, which ever you felt like. Apparently, Lynda thought 12 was enough and flipped it, while I waited at the Cogswell gate.) Anyway, no harm no foul. We ended up finding everybody later. I rode behind David and Steve. We rode back down the Hwy 39 and down the WHOLE San Gabriel River Trail. In Whittier, you have to make the hard right and quick left to catch the SGRT again. There is an inconvenient overpass with steep roundabout. Then a mile later theres’ the Tunnel of DOOM (underpass which is pitch black, narrow, with deep gutters on both sides, and steep approach and exit. And, you can fly right past the Tunnel of Doom if you’re not paying attention. AmIRight, Bob?
The SGRT flows along the wash and 605 Fwy. There’s horse properties along the SGRT too. Some are nice and others you feel bad for the horses.
At the End of the SGRT, I fell way back, then from out of nowhere, GT, Julie, Kali, Leanne, Mike and Blake passed me. Where did they come from? Oh, potty breaks and leap frogging.
At Mile 59, we refueled at TACO smell in Seal Beach. We caught up with Lynda, and the fast gang: Bob, Gregg, Sven, Danny.
The ride along the beach was nice, in Huntington Beach. The traffic and red lights picked up though. Also, the sun broke through and started warming up. We didn’t notice too much cuz the beach breeze.
At mile 72 we flipped it in Newport Beach and started heading back. We stopped at a Mobil station (not an AM/PM) for refueling and potty break.
Getting back onto the SGRT was tricky. We had to make some calls to get everyone back on the trail. But, we all made it and started heading home. There was a nice tail wind for about 6 miles. Then, it was over. And the heat picked up.
The fun parts of the return trip for me and Lynda. 1. Passing Kazoo Guy. 2. Passing Tuba guy in the park. 3. Body on the bike path. 4. FedEx has new facility by Santa Fe Dam, but they must have some newbie drivers. Smack.
Lynda and I stopped at the Golf Pro Shop at the Dam. They had this enormous ICE COLD Water Jar. Bless their hearts. It was full when I arrived, not so much after we left.
The final miles back were slow and grueling. I looked forward to an ice cold drink from the Sprinter van. When we rolled in, Lynda had to lap the parking lot to clock a full 120 miles. All the guys were waiting and laying on the grass. Kali and Gregg were returning from a brick run. Kudos to the full crazies! We snapped a group shot and headed out. What a ride!