The wet blustery weather surely discouraged some riders from crawling out of their warm cozy beds, but it was an epic turn out anyway. We’ve never had so many people show up for our January Banana Slug. Though the forecast was calling for partly cloudy skies, it just happened to be the part between the sun and earth; those who were prepared for cold drizzly rain were not disappointed. By the end of the ride, I was soaked through and slightly hypothermic. It was nice to peel off the wet layers and throw on some toasty warm woolen clothes.
The competition was fierce, and most riders finished under three hours. Mark Severy blew it out, finishing in just over two hours. Shaun Lyle, who led the way to Monument Road, was passed by Mark on the climb, and finished with an awesome time, but still almost ten minutes behind.
I heard there were some riding mountain bikes, but it was hard for me to keep track. I’ve been told Michael Chapman, Robert East, and Sean Johnson were.
Oh yeah, and I was on my 31 pound steel comfort bike with flat pedals and carrying a Downtown Brown in my Camelbak (to accompany the requisite safety meeting before the descent into Ferndale).
Mark Severy 2:04:21
Shaun Lyle 2:13:20
Chris Johnson 2:29:44
Allen Hoy 2:29:44
“Hollywood” Bob Beede 2:32:06
Michael Chapman 2:32:23
Jeff Farnum 2:32:47
Robert East 2:32:55
Rik Rieder 2:37:56
Larry Kluck 2:39:30
Tessa Thralls 2:40:30
Sean Johnson 2:43:30
Grant Lay 2:48:23
Sean Robertson 2:52:45
Hollie Ernest 2:54:58
Tom Phillips 2:54:58
Margaret Lang 2:57:00
Andre Guimaraes 2:59:04
Mark Griffin 3:00:50
Todd Kraemer 3:05:15
Steve Railsback 3:05:26
Courtney Ladika 3:59:41
Ali “late start” Osgood 4:10:30
Tim “no excuses” Daniels 4:33:10
Justin “hangin with dad” Graves 4:53:00
Thomas Graves DNF
Next up, the perennial favorite: Butler Valley, Saturday, February 13. The ride will start almost promptly at 9:00 a.m. from the parking lot at Arcata Community Center.
Greetings Fellow Cyclists,
This Saturday, January 9, 2016 is the first in our series of four Banana Slug Winter Training Rides. We’re meeting at the parking lot at Humboldt County Fairgrounds in Ferndale. We head out of Ferndale to Rio Del via Blue Slide Road. We’ll climb up Monument Avenue to Mattole/Wildcat Road, and drop back into Ferndale from there. It’s roughly 30 miles with about 3000 feet of climbing. We will have route slips available. The ride will start almost promptly at 9:00 a.m. We will have locally roasted Kinetic Coffee, Los Bagels, and fresh fruit to help fuel your ride.
Ride is on, rain or shine.
Greetings Fellow Cyclists and Trail Lovers,
If your membership is coming due soon, and you’re planning on joining with the basic single membership, the fees are going up this coming Monday, January 4, 2016 from $30 to $35. Here’s a copy/paste of a bulletin sent from our partner IMBA:
Individual Membership Dues Increase
On January 4, 2016, IMBA plans to raise its Basic Individual Membership dues from $30 to $35. There are no changes to the $50 Basic Family Membership—which includes a free pair of IMBA socks—or other IMBA membership level rates.
Current members who wish to renew their Basic Individual Membership prior to the January 4, 2016, price increase can do so anytime between now and January 3, 2016 at the current rate. Any early renewals will not expire until one full year after their current expiration date–not the renewal date. In essence, your membership will be pushed out an additional year from your expiry date now on record. Your credit card will then be charged on the anniversary of when the auto-renew option was selected. Check out IMBA’s FAQ on membership dues increase here.
Membership Enhancements – Auto Renewing Memberships
IMBA now offers members the opportunity to auto-renew their membership. New and renewing members that select this option will have their membership automatically renew and have their credit card charged on the membership expiration date. Your credit card information is secure as it is stored by the credit card processing company and not in IMBA’s systems.
One benefit of this new auto-renew option is that members will “lock into” their annual dues amount and avoid any future dues increase while their auto-renew is in effect. Check out IMBA’s FAQ on auto-renewing membership here.
Greetings Adventurous Cyclists,
The 2016 Banana Slug Winter Training Ride Series schedule and venues are set.
First up, on Saturday, January 9 is Monument. We head out of Ferndale to Rio Del via Blue Slide Road. We’ll climb up Monument Avenue to Mattole/Wildcat Road, and drop back into Ferndale from there. It’s roughly 30 miles with about 3000 feet of climbing. The ride will leave almost promptly at 9:00 a.m. from the parking lot at the Humboldt County Fairgrounds in Ferndale.
As always, be well prepared, self sufficient, and know your limitations.
We’ll have coffee, fresh fruit, and bagels.
See you out there.
Greetings Fellow Bicycle and Trail Lovers,
We had an awesome meeting tonight, beer and food aside. It was well attended by the usual suspect, but as well, many new faces showed, and almost all of them there to volunteer to help move the organization onward and upward to bigger and better things.
Here’s a list of the new Officer positions as of January 1, 2016:
Chair – Tom Phillips
Vice Chair – Sean Tetrault
Recording Secretary – Gina Bauer
Treasurer – Jenny Mason
Board of Directors also includes:
John Dostal – incumbent
Todd Kraemer – incumbent
Tim Daniels – incumbent (sort of)
Sean Robertson – new member
Steven Pearl – new member
Andrea Achilli – new member
Justin Graves – pending new member
This puts us one shy of our maximum number of board members (twelve). Given the enthusiasm, and leadership displayed by our incoming Officers, I expect we will get a LOT accomplished in the years to come. It is with absolutely no reservations that I turn over the keys to RCMBA to such willing, and competent hands.
You all are amazing!
P.S. thank you very much for the lovely bottle of scotch. I didn’t waste any time opening it.
A down home Humboldt short track MTB tradition with events for the whole family, held in association with RCMBA.
$25 Adult Race
$10 Adult’s Second Race of Day (yes you should definitely do them both!)
Kids 12 & Under Race Free
Registration closes 15 minutes prior to each race.
11:00 – Half Hour Race
12:00 – Free Kid’s Race
13:00 – Hour Race
12:xx – BBQ
13:xx – Free Crailing Competition – See who can ride through a tricky obstacle course the SLOWEST!
To get there, head straight up Aldergrove Rd. Arcata. CA. The road goes up a steep hill, twists, up some more, levels out, descends a little, then stay RIGHT at the first “T” intersection. Continue straight up small hill approximately quarter mile, gate to open field parking area is on the left.
questions? – pirate.RIDE@gmail.com
We finished out Lacks Mountain on Friday! This segment of trail is on the Southern side of the mountain bike trail system by the first campground as you drive up Pine Ridge Road. It will add an technical piece of trail with more rock than the rest of the trail system. The segment is a figure “8” which spirals up the mountain and has a ripping decent all the way down into the mini-valley that runs parallel with Pine Ridge Road. Were excited to be christening this new trail with the HSU collegiate race this weekend, should be a blast!
The Lacks Creek Road signs have been put up by the County. I’ve heard of some folks getting lost while trying to find Lacks Creek so hopefully this avoids any more lost trail seekers. Trail head and new Kiosk signs are coming soon as well.
Also, October 10th & 11th is the collegiate mountain bike race at Lacks Creek, which also includes a community race. More details: here
We are racing to finish the last segment of trail on Lacks Mountain by the first campsite which is going to be a great addition to the trail system. Keep in mind these trails are not named yet and we are open to everyone’s suggestion for trail names, enter your trail name idea here
Friday afternoon the weather outlook for Humboldt Bay was showing some warmer than usual temperatures. From this I could only surmise that it was going to be hot in Siskiyou County, and in particular Scott Valley. I was not wrong. RCMBA riders were gathered at Forks of Salmon Post Office in the cool morning shadows as we took down names, briefed the riders on the route, and made sure everybody had their will filled out.
It was probably in the sixties as we rolled away from the post office and followed the North Fork Salmon River toward Sawyers Bar, and then up to Etna Summit. This was also the last time any of us but the support vehicle driver saw Errin Odell, and Shaun Lyle. They rocketed out ahead and the last time the support crew saw them was at Etna Summit. They stayed together, and gave the support driver the okay to not bother coming back to check on them. They wound up finishing almost five hours ahead of the more leisurely crowd.
Almost all of the first twenty five miles of amazingly well maintained pavement are in the shade of a beautiful forest canopy, and the steep walls of the deep valley help keep the sun from turning it into a furnace, at least until later in the day. Fortunately, by the time the trees thin out, the road has reached near the summit, and the oxygen deprived elevations offer a little respite from the heat. Of course, by that time, the road has reached a pitch sometimes exceeding twelve percent, and it doesn’t relent for the last seven miles to the summit. The temperatures escalated quickly after we crested the summit, but it wasn’t really that noticeable at speeds exceeding forty miles per hour as we rapidly descended to the tiny burg of Etna, and their quaint little brewery.
The stop at the brewery took longer than expected. Seems Etna was holding its First Annual City Wide Garage/Yard Sale Extravaganza. The brewery was packed, and it didn’t appear they were ready for the crowd. Eventually we got some lunch and a tasty beer (or two) and were ready to move along to the next challenge of the day.
Refueled, and ready to ride, I jumped back on my bike and experienced the toughest hill of the day; the short hill from the brewery back up to the main road was fifty yards of pure adrenaline, and beer pumping through my veins. My head was spinning from the effort as I turned onto Highway 3 and headed toward Callahan. It was in Callahan that I assumed the duties of SAG driver. I was disappointed that I wasn’t going to get to do the whole ride, but my disappointment was tempered by the 100 degree heat on the twelve mile, six percent climb to the next summit. We had similar conditions last year, and at least two, maybe three riders opted to catch a ride to the summit. This year everybody rode the entire twelve miles, but not without guzzling almost all of what was left of our drinking water, and at least a couple riders stopped to soak their shirt in a creek. The smiles on the riders’ faces were priceless as they crested the summit. As well, many of the smiles were accompanied by whoops of joy; they knew the hardest parts of the ride were over. The temperatures were significantly milder at the summit, and the riders took the opportunity to rehydrate and refuel for the final leg of the journey.
The ride down from the last big summit is mostly downhill for the first twenty five miles as we followed South Fork Salmon River, and surprisingly, even as the afternoon shadows deepened, the temperatures climbed steadily as we dropped in elevation. By the time we were all back at Forks of Salmon Post Office, the sun was barely above the distant hills, but the temperatures were still in the high eighties. Some of our intrepid riders took the short hike down to enjoy a brief dip in the frigid waters of the North Fork Salmon River. We stayed in the parking lot for a short spell discussing the events of the day, and refueling and rehydrating our depleted bodies. The recovery drink of choice was obvious, and there was even some bartering for ice cold beer.
Many thanks for Errin Odell and his family for helping facilitate our accommodations. Special thanks to Dave and Glenna Atwood for their warm hospitality and opening their private campsite up for us to enjoy.
It was a marvelous weekend adventure, and we’re already planning the event for next year. Tentatively we will be riding this with shorter options on the weekend of June 4, 2016. Mark your calendars now. Don’t miss another year.
Greetings Fellow Cyclists,
First, but not last, RCMBA Board of Directors is meeting Monday, June 1, 2015 at Mad River Brewery. The meeting will start almost promptly at 6:30 p.m. Members, and the general public are invited to join us.
Next up – Forks of Salmon Century – Saturday, June 6, 2015. This is a SAG supported ride on some of the most amazing back roads in northern CA. For insurance purposes, this event is for RCMBA members only and there is no entry fee. Next year we are planning on partnering with Mid Klamath Watershed Council; the event will be open to the public, and there will be an entry fee.
We’ll ride in a clockwise direction heading out Sawyers Bar Road over Etna Summit to Etna. Right turn on Highway 3 to Callahan, and a right turn on Callahan – Cecilville Road. That will bring us back to Forks of Salmon. It is about 100 miles with around 10,000 feet of climbing. It’s not an easy ride, but it is less effort than the Tour of the Unknown Coast if for no other reason than the pavement is in such excellent condition. Did we mention that Etna Brewery is about mid-point of the ride, just in time for lunch? Riders need to be ready to ride from the Forks of Salmon Post Office at 8:00 a.m. There is camping available at Somes Bar, with showers, and cooking facilities Friday and Saturday night. For directions to camping, or more information about this event contact us at RCMBA.email@example.com, or call Tim at 707-668-1716.
And finally – Lacks Creek Trail Work Schedule. Our partners in trail love, Humboldt Trail Council Trail Stewards, have set a schedule for regular trail work days in Lacks Creek starting June 13, 2015. The new trail construction is on the east ridge of the valley, and though they are multi-use trails, they are being build with cycling in mind; meaning more smiles per mile. So mark your calendars as far ahead as you dare. Here they are: June 13, July 11, August 8, September 12, October 10, November 14, December 12. November and December days are weather dependent. Details for the June 13 trail work day will be coming soon.
Keep on ridin’