This past weekend was the first ever Rough Riders Rally in Mill Valley, California. Serbrina, Bruce and I drove up to participate in the ride, check out some bikes and meet some new people. The rally is a put on by Chris Kostman, author of the article that started it all. According to Chris, he’s had the idea for an event like this since the article was first published, back in 1993. It took a little bit longer for people to come around and for the event to take place, but it happened, and I was there.
It was really interesting to see all of the different bikes that people brought for this event. Everyone had a different idea on what is the best bike capable of going “anywhere”. I would say that the most popular style of bike was a “Cross bike”. There were some mountain bikes of course and even a couple of tandems. I brought the Fargo up, and I left the knobbies on from last weekends ride.
Friday’s ride was a 35 mile pavement ride. Billed as a warm up ride, it still had 3500 feet of climbing. Something that I’ve learned is that that if you show up for an AdventureCorps ride, prepare to be challenged. That’s exactly what happened to me. The knobbies were a poor choice for the pavement loop and the Fargo was slow going. I tried to keep up and I pushed my heart rate too high too fast. After about 20 minutes I realized that I was carrying my Heed, but I forgot to add it to my water! I was not off to a good start. I decided to pull over, let the group go and fill up my water with Heed. It also gave me a chance to ride at my own pace and not try and keep up. I was pushing myself to hard, and this was only the warm up day! Here’s the Garmin stats.
The road from Fairfax up to Alpine Lake is a steady climb in the sun. I’d already done enough damage I guess, so I really struggled. Once at the dam I was able to enjoy the cool air coming off the water and the views surrounding the man made lake.
Time to get pedalin’ again. From here it was another climb up to the ridge and views of the ocean. The road climbs through the forest, switch-backing up and up. The shade of the trees kept the temps down and there were even wet spots on the road. I climbed all alone and right as I reached the summit I saw Bruce about to pedal off. Luckily he heard my yell and we were able to ride together.
We rode up towards the top, with amazing views of the coast popping up the higher we got. I pulled over to take some pics and while walking through the weeds I noticed Jacquie Phelan lying there in wait. Jacquie had pulled over to wait for Bruce, knowing that he was behind her, so we joined her and hung out for a while. She told us stories about the area and we were very lucky to have her as our personal tour guide. Thanks Jaqcuie!
From the top we rode down towards Mill Valley with Jacquie and she took us on a special tour that was not on the route. This was a highlight of the trip for both Bruce and I. Watching Jacquie ride the trail while I walked was worth the drive alone. Everything else was going to be extra. Tomorrow the Saturday ride! Single track, two-track and fireroads. Oh yeah, amazing views too! Make sure you stop by tomorrow. Thanks for reading.