Calvin Nieh // Mini Epic
My day began with a roll-out at 7:15 am in front of Pete's. I had 3 bottles of water, a fresh bagel with cream cheese, and a handful of snacks in my handlebar bag. 3 miles in, on a grade change on Quito Road, my chain snapped. Luckily, I only needed a PowerLink to repair it The first taste of dirt was on St. Joseph's trail and it was an appropriate appetizer for the day ahead.
The climb up Black Road was tough, but the trailhead at John Nicholas came faster than I thought. Somewhere on the trail, just before a scenic lookout, I lost one of my water bottles. Darn! It was a North Face bottle that I really liked.
Skyline, Saratoga Gap, and Long Ridge trails were awesome and while I've done them all separately, I'd never strung them all together like today.
I was out of water by the parking lot at Saratoga Gap. I stayed on the lookout for the water stops off-route, but didn't actually get water until the David C Daniels Nature Center at Page Mill and Skyline. With two fresh bottles of water, the rest of the ride to the top of Black Mtn. was steady and worry free.
I am familiar with the trails down from Black Mtn to the end of Stevens Canyon, and my Salsa Fargo with 2.35" rubber handled the ride as per usual. The only difference today was that I'd already ridden up and down nearly 7K' of elevation so I had to work hard at keeping my palm pressure lower against my hood when braking down descents (they'd been getting sore from around Long View).
The ride down Stevens Canyon was smooth and that last little climb over Mt. Eden was surprisingly okay given I'd been out for so long already. This was an awesome event and I hope to be able to graduate up to the Big or Grand in the future. Thanks to the organizers for putting this virtual riding event together.