Banana Slug #1 was a huge success. With all the wet weather we’ve had this winter, I wasn’t sure if we were going to have nice weather for our first Banana Slug of the year. Last year we got a pretty good dose of rain while climbing Monument. It wasn’t the most pleasant ride. Fortunately, the sun was shining Saturday morning and the temperatures were comfortable.
I’m not sure if it was the awesome weather, or the fact that we started in Blue Lake next to Mad River Brewery that brought out a record January crowd. We had 28 riders on the roster, and a few unregistered folks along for the ride; I counted 35 riders heading out as the ride started almost promptly at 10:00. A number of the riders informed me that they planned on doing the originally planned route, the ride up to Lord Ellis Summit via Bald Mountain Road/Snow Camp Road. On their return, they confirmed that the route was somewhat less than ideal. In fact, one of the riders slid out and crashed on a patch of ice as he maneuvered to dodge an oncoming vehicle. He was bruised, but okay. Weather and conditions permitting, we’ll do that ride next January. It’s a really fun ride.
There were no surprises about the finishers either. The top riders were in good form, and could have finished in under two hours had they not stopped to hang out and enjoy the awesome weather. We had quite a wide variety of riders too; it wasn’t all hammer fest. There were a lot of people taking their time and enjoying the day.
And on that note, we are awarding points this year. The point system will work like this: All registered participants get one point for finishing the ride. First rider will be awarded five points, second will get four, third three, fourth two, and fifth one. As well, we will have separate awards for men and women. The top sluggers will be awarded a trophy for the year and will hang onto it until they are awarded the following year.
Here’s to hoping our February event is graced with such beautiful weather.
Here are the results. And though technically they didn’t “finish” the ride, I’m going to give all the Lord Ellis riders a point for their adventurous spirit. They earned it, and then some.
Greetings Banana Sluggers and all fellow cyclists,
We’re going to keep all our rides from February through June the same as last year but we have something special for you in January. We would be remiss if the ride didn’t have a certain amount of dirt involved; we’re calling it the Lord Ellis Challenge.
We’ll start in Blue Lake on Taylor Way next to Mad River Brewery and head for Korbel. We’ll climb up Maple Creek Road to the Bald Mountain Road junction and turn left. There are some rough gravel sections here just for a warm-up. We’ll climb to Snow Camp Road and turn left again. This is where it turns to dirt and the road climbs just a bit more. Then comes the fun with a sketchy gravel road descent to Lord Ellis Summit. From there we’ll turn left again onto Highway 299 and continue our descent. We’ll turn left one more time on Blue Lake Boulevard just after the truck scales and head on into Blue Lake. It’s doable on a road bike with 23c tires, but will put your dirt handling and flat fixin’ skills to the test.
Oh yeah, and after your ride you can enjoy lunch and a beer at the brewery.
As always, we’ll have coffee, fresh fruit, and bagels.
Without Further ado…
Oh yeah, and we ride, rain or shine.
See you out there
(on behalf of Sluggo)
Join RCMBA for National Public Lands Day in King Range National Conservation Area. Meet at Tolkan Campground Saturday, September 24 at 9:00 a.m.
Dress appropriately, long sleeves, pants, and work boots are a good idea. Bring water and food during the trail work. Gloves and tools will be provided.
Camping is free Friday and Saturday nights for all trail workers. There will be a hosted barbecue at Tolkan Campground after the trail work. We’ll have hot showers set up for camping trail workers too.
Sunday is just for ridin’ and chillin’.
For more information e-mail RCMBA.email@example.com or call 707-668-1716
Dear Fellow Cyclists,
First the good news; RCMBA’s inaugural Stormy Saddle Enduro is only one week away. It will be an event to remember and to repeat in years to come. We’ve had a decent response to our call for volunteers, but we need more. If you are considering going out there just to enjoy the spectacle, what better chance to help out at the same time! If you’re going out there to race, we can still use your help on Friday, and Sunday as well. Though the race will be held on Saturday, there are many many things to do before and after. Your help will be greatly appreciated, and it will help us keep moving forward into next year. All volunteers will be fed lunch to keep them fueled up.
Now for the better news. We’re planning an after race barbecue for our wonderful volunteers. Redwood Meat Company is donating fifteen pounds of tri-tip that we’re going to slow cook on mesquite for a few hours, and we’ll have veggie burgers for our non-carnivorous friends. As well, we’ll have green salad, potato salad, and bean salad and Tim’s homemade monster chocolate chip cookies.
Did we mention beer? Mad River Brewing Company has donated a generous quantity of beer. There will be plenty of beer and non-alcoholic beverages to keep you hydrated and to complement your meal.
Now for the bonus round. If you’re a volunteer, and camp out Saturday night, we’re going to have a portable shower rigged. You don’t have to cave out all sweaty and grimy.
We’re holding a special meeting on Monday evening at 5:30 p.m. for volunteers at Humboldt County Association of Governments (HCAOG), 611 I Street, Suite B on the SE corner of 6th and I streets in Eureka. If you cannot make the meeting, fear not, we still need your help and will not turn you away, but if you can make the meeting please be there.
If you would like to join us and help out with this event, and have not yet let us know, please e-mail RCMBA.firstname.lastname@example.org, or call Tim at 707-668-1716.
It’s gonna be awesome!
Greetings Fellow Cyclists,
RCMBA’s Stormy Saddle Enduro at Lacks Creek is shaping up to be a spectacular event. We are looking for about 35 volunteers to help with set-up, clean-up, course marking/striking, course marshaling, stage timing, traffic direction, food service, and beer service. We want this to be an event to remember, and to continue well into the future; having local community’s support is essential. Volunteers will be fed lunch, and after the event, we’re having a special barbecue just for volunteers. The grill will be manned by yours truly; expect nothing less than excellence.
If you have already signed up to volunteer, we will be contacting you shortly. There will be a volunteer briefing sometime early in the week of the event. Date, time, and place are to be announced.
If you would like to volunteer, please contact me, Tim Daniels, by responding by e-mail to RCMBA.email@example.com, or call me at 707-668-1716.
See you on the road and on the trails.
Greetings Humboldt Cyclists,
We are planning an Enduro Mountain Bike Race on July 30th. It is sure to be a great time. The race will be held out in Lacks Creek featuring all the trails. We are pending on adding a 5th stage for the Experts/Pro/Open classes (the downhill course), otherwise all categories will at least race 4 stages covering all the sweet sections. I hope all of you can make it out and please spread the word. There will be food, free camping, and all around good times.
We will need volunteers! If you are available that weekend, we would be grateful for your help. Stay tuned for a sign up sheet and expected tasks for volunteering. We will definitely need a lot of course marshals.
In the mean time, visit https://humboldtenduro.com/ for more information. Register quick as we have a cap set for 100 people. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with questions via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a fun one to celebrate the bike month riding bikes and sipping on craft beers: the Brewvet Challenge!
The brewvet is a challenge to inspire you to get on your bike and explore your surroundings – and your local craft beers. The event runs through the whole month of May 2016. It is inspired by randonneuring events called brevets, so it makes sense to call it a Brewvet.
An “official” brewvet will incorporate 8 separate bike rides, each of which to a different location, where you will buy or consume a different beer, for a total distance of at least 40 miles (64 km as the brevet people count them) by bike. A ride qualifies if you either stop to drink a beer during your bike ride, or purchase a beer on your bike ride that you drink shortly after you get back home. Mead, cider and wine… well they count too. Just like in a brevet, you must provide documentation of each stop on your adventures. If you complete the challenge you’ll even get a little prize.
Once you have completed your Brewvet submit your 8 photos and completed control card to accinson “at” hotmail dot com. Photos can be submitted on your blog, as links to a photo sharing website or tweets, or via email. Deadline for Brewvet submissions is June 21, 2016.
Everyone who successfully completes the Brewvet will receive a little prize from RCMBA. Now, go out and ride your bike!
Greetings Fellow Banana Sluggers,
We at RCMBA decided to bill our annual Forks of Salmon Century as the fifth Banana Slug. The format will be a bit different from our usual Banana Slug rides; there will be no times kept, the riders will be supported by a SAG wagon in case of mechanical or rider break down, and we’ll carry your gear/food/water/etc. As usual, we will have water, coffee, fresh fruit, and bagels for the riders. You are encouraged to bring some snacks and if you don’t plan on getting lunch at Etna Brewery, bring a lunch.
Saturday, June 4 2016 we will meet at the Forks of Salmon Post Office and the ride will start almost promptly at 8 a.m. If you’re one of the faster riders and plan on stopping at the brewery for lunch, be forewarned; it won’t be open until 11:30 a.m. You can get there early and wait, leave Forks of Salmon a little later and catch us slow riders, or you can skip the brewery altogether. You have choices.
As well, there is camping available. One of our members has gotten us access to a private campground in Somes Bar. If you would like to camp there please reply to this e-mail for more information.
See you out there!
Wherever you rode on Saturday I hope it was as excellent as RCMBA’s Dyerville Loop Banana Slug. The National Weather Service forecast was calling for a small chance of showers, but they never once rained on our parade for the entire day. The temperatures were in the sixties, the sun was in and out, and the riders reported the weather and views from up on the ridge were spectacular.
The riders weren’t in any hurry to get started and by about a quarter after ten all fourteen riders were finally perched to launch, and launch they did. Along the route at least two riders were unceremoniously launched onto the ground, so far as scraped skin and torn clothing could tell. There were only two mechanical problems, both of them flat tires, and one of them is highly suspect in the subsequent launching of a rider. Finally, one rider missed a turn, and wound up a couple miles off course before he realized his error.
All riders finished, (left-behind skin excepted) in very respectable times, and all had smiles on their faces exclaiming “awesome ride”. Yes, even the skinned riders had fun.
4:01:31 Andrea Achilli
4:01:35 Jess Couch
4:01:38 Mark (flatted and launched #1) Severy
4:11:28 Michael Chapman
4:11:28 Robert East
4:18:00 Sean (flatted) Robertson
4:24:05 Tessa (launched #2) Thralls
4:29:27 Andre Guimaraes
4:41:13 Rik (which way to Garberville?) Rieder
5:36:49 Tom Phillips
5:36:49 Hollie Earnest
5:38:00 Mike Paula
6:00:00 Austin (from Austin) Sullivan
6:08:57 Sandra Rosas
We would like to point out that Michael Chapman, Robert East, Tessa Thralls, and Rik Rieder rode all four regular season Banana Slug Rides this year. Thank you for joining us in these fun and challenging rides and supporting RCMBA!
Stay tuned for more information on our late season Banana Slug ride the first weekend in June. We’re heading back to Forks of Salmon for the hundred miler. As in the past, it will be a SAG supported ride, but we won’t be keeping times.
The weather couldn’t have been better, nor the crowd of eager trail workers more enthusiastic. It was basic clean-up day; the winter weather was mostly kind to the trail, but the trees in the neighborhood took more of a beating. Their debris was scattered about, and some rather large limbs decided to sprawl themselves across more than one section of trail. While most of us were clearing debris, a small group of sculptors took to the jump trail to help bring it back to a more “airy” state, and another group focused on the downhill trail. All in all, there were at least twenty five trail workers, and we got a lot done. It was a great day at Lacks Creek.
To all who came out to enjoy the awesome weather, and get our newest mountain bike trail system up to snuff for the coming year, we at RCMBA offer a heartfelt thank you!
The crowd gathers…
Noah, armed and dangerous
It was raining hard Saturday morning as we loaded the van to haul the Banana Slug kit to Freshwater Park, but by the time we arrived it had stopped raining. As it turned out, it didn’t rain again until the very end as we packed up the van and headed home. Even with the prevailing weather forecast and challenging ride route, I wasn’t surprised at the relatively large turnout. We had 12 sluggers on the roster; most of them rode to freshwater park from their homes, some as far away as McKinleyville. We had couple riders come all the way up from Petaluma; they’d come a long way to ride, they were gonna ride. Most riders were equipped with fatter CX tires, and Michael Chapman, Robert East, and Grant Lay chose to ride mountain bikes; not a bad choice given the rough nature of the roads out there. We also had a guest appearance; Chris Schinke showed up for the start, but cut out early. I’m not sure how far he rode up the Kneeland Road, but he was already bombing back down as Jenny and I were headed up. We were slow getting started, but we finally got the riders out the gate by ten or so minutes after nine. There was only one mechanical; Andrea Achilli flatted on the final climb up Mountain View Road. All riders finished under five hours, and Mike Paula even turned a faster time than he did on Butler Valley Loop; that is an accomplishment! And happily, there were no reports of aggressive dogs and nobody got lost. The final tally is as follows:
Michael Davies-Hughes 3:15:55
Errin Odell 3:22:02
Robert East 3:35:47
Andrea Achilli 3:41:21
John Bergenske 3:43:00
Steve Hoffman 3:43:00
Michael Chapman 3:51:00
Tessa Thralls 3:51:35
Rik Rieder 4:00:45
Jess Couch 4:18:14
Grant Lay 4:24:32
Mike Paula 4:52:20
Our fourth Banana Slug, the ever challenging Dyerville Loop will be held on Saturday, April 9, 2016. The ride will start and finish at the Humboldt Redwoods State Park Visitor Center just outside of Weott. The ride will begin almost promptly at 10:00 a.m. rain or shine. See you there!.