Friday, June 23, 2017

Night Audax Description

Night Audax 200k

  • Ride Type: ACP 200k
  • Date: Saturday, September 9th, 2017
  • Fee: $25, CIBC members deduct $5. Click here to become CIBC member. Be sure to make out a separate check for CIBC membership.
  • Start Time: 19:00  (evening start)
  • Registration: 18:30
  • Time Limit: 13.5 Hours
  • Ride Ends: 08:30 on September 10th
  • Route Map (Subject to Revision):
  • Cue sheet (Subject to Revision): (XLS)
  • Start: Cynthia Drive, Huntington Beach
  • Waiver and Registration
  • Registered Riders
This year we will be following the same route as previous years. This is an Audax ride so we ride as a group with the stronger riders taking longer pulls. One designated rider will stay at the back of the group (any volunteers?). If a rider has a flat or a mechanical we all stop until it is fixed. You need lights that can last for ten hours and reflective gear. Please set your tail lights on steady mode. Note that there are no rest rooms at the start of the ride.
We start on Cynthia Drive in Huntington Beach at 7 o'clock in the evening and head inland on the Santa Ana River Trail. We will be riding this section at 18-20 mph because it is flat and we will have a tail wind. The first climb is Green River road over the 91 freeway. We will regroup at the 76 gas station on the far side of the freeway at mile 28.4, but this is not a control. We will ride the next section more slowly.
The next few miles meander through Corona and Norco with gentle climbs until we get to the entrance to the upper river trail at mile 41.4 where we will have to push our bikes under a closed gate. Then we have another 20 miles of bike path to San Bernardino. A mile after the end of the bike path is the only control at the In'n'Out burger at mile 62.2. Everyone reaching the In'n'Out with me will get their food and drinks for free! Have a double-double, fries, and a milk shake on me. I expect to get here by midnight or slightly earlier and stay for about 30-45 minutes.
We return the same way we rode out. By now the wind will have died down and we will return at around 16mph with a light or no headwind. Make a point of enjoying the view north over the Santa Ana valley from River Drive in Norco looking at the lights of Eastvale. We regroup at the Arco in Corona at mile 93.4 just after we ride under the 91 freeway. Again, this is not a control.
We reenter the Santa Ana river trail at mile 97.6 and stay on it all the way to the end of the ride. I expect we will finish at about 5am.
Every year this is a unique and bizarre ride. We have had thunder and lightning on either side of us without getting wet, we have watched impromptu car shows broken up by the police, lone riders wearing ski masks, and much more. This is a great way to beat the summer heat and get some practice for that PBP evening start.

I have a write up of last year's event and also some photographs that Brent took.
Ride Organizer: Terry Hutt (

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Carrying your bike on Amtrak

A few months ago I participated in a survey from Amtrak about how they could make carrying my bicycle on Amtrak better. Today I received an email from them containing a list of all the questions that had been asked by cyclists in the survey and the responses.

You can get to Amtrak's special webpage for cyclists at

I placed a copy of the survey results on one of my websites here.

It's reassuring that Amtrak is taking the needs of cyclists seriously. I'd still like to see consistency in services and requirements but that probably isn't going to happen given the state and history of Amtrak. But a good explanation is a start.

I just sold my recumbent bike to Doug Church. It's a shame I was unable to take advantage of it, so I hope Doug enjoys it.

Sunday, June 11, 2017


Amber and I rode The Crema again today. This is a flat 50 mile ride mainly on bike paths. We're taking it easy because Amber's knee got wrenched at work and we need to get it healed before the 1000km next month.

We were surprised that the weather was quite stormy and we actually had a few minutes of light rain. The bike path was unsurprisingly empty which was great, although the 20mph headwind was not.

I discovered a down-side to Amber's 32mm tires. The rooster-tail is much heavier. It seemed wherever I rode it soaked me. Now that I look at the lens of my GoPro I see it is covered in black water specks.

I have finally figured out the best way to take photographs on my GoPro Session while riding. I mounted it on the nose of my aerobars and configured it to go into photo mode when I hold the button down for three seconds. When I hear the double beep I press the button another time to take a photo and then it turns off automatically. That saves battery and I always know whether it's on or off (it's off). At night I can take it off and replace it with a light.

The wait at The Crema was shorter than usual and the weather was rather nice. When we got back onto the bike path to come home we had a 20mph tailwind. That's a great way to finish a ride.

Amber is graduating with her masters in nursing next Saturday so we will ride Back Bay on Sunday. Amber feels her knee has healed to the point where she can do a little climbing. Let's hope she's correct.

My fitbit surge broke while hiking last weekend. I'd had it less than a year so I called them up and they sent me a new one. It's so unusual for a company to stand behind their products like that. I am absolutely impressed.

Fitbit made this OK

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Seventy miles with Amber

Because of ongoing track maintenance Amtrak is not running trains on the weekend so are unable to ride my Anaheim to Oceanside permanent. I came up with a loop that uses Laguna Canyon road (from Willie's 400k last weekend). On Willie's ride we came down at 5:30am when it was cold and had no traffic.

We started at Anaheim and climbed Santiago Canyon and then dropped to Cooks Corner. They were having a concert so they were very  busy. We were there an hour. I had the steak sandwich - meh. We jumped on the Aliso Creek bike trail all the way to Paseo de Valencia. Then we headed onto El Toro Road and Laguna Canyon which was extremely busy when we got there.

Once in Laguna Beach we rode on Cliff Drive instead of PCH which would have worked if we had been going Southbound. Anything that keeps you off PCH is good. Then we just headed up the coast and jumped onto the SART back to Anaheim.

We tried the new Oyster Bar at Anaheim train station. It was surprisingly good and quite busy. There was an Angel's game that evening and I think they get quite a bit of trade from the fans. Amber had a sausage and chicken stew and smelled heavenly and I had a blackened chicken Po Boy. Both excellent and the price is reasonable. They are very bike friendly there.

Don't wait to eat

Sherry and I hiked the Exploration Trail in Running Springs today. It's a challenging hike with 1600' of climbing in four miles of rocky single track followed by an easy descent on a paved road. About three miles into the climbing I noticed Sherry was lagging and starting to think negative thoughts so obviously she was bonking.

We had food with us because we've done this kind of thing before so I told her to eat something. "I'll eat something when we get to the road," she said. Now, I've done the same thing on rides. I'm bonking and I say to myself "I'll eat something when I get to the next turn.".

Why do we do that? How is it better to make an extra stop at an upcoming landmark rather than making an extra stop right now? You have to eat as soon as you realize you are bonking (preferably before, but that's another story). Sure, if you're half a mile from a control you can tough it out because you were going to stop anyway.

But if you don't have a planned stop within the next mile, you have to stop and take care of the problem RIGHT NOW! I don't know why we fight it, but we do.