Chris Grossman // Mini Epic
I headed out around 8:45 am from the parking lot on the morning of Wednesday April 27th. It was a cold morning, 46 degrees, so I layered up and headed out. This ride was only about 2 miles shy of my longest ride, and the most climbing that I had done in one day, so I was excited for the challenge and looking forward to a fun day in the saddle. About a week before Sea Otter my usual gravel bike’s frame broke and I was left scrambling, and settled on renting a Cannondale Topstone Carbon 105 XL. This bike allowed me to throw four bottle cages on for the epic day and I loaded up with snacks and beverages to ensure that I could make it through this epic adventure. It seemed like no time before climbing up the dirt, and heading around Lexington, beginning the climb up Black Road to John Nicholas Trail. I grabbed a quick photo at the start of the trail and kept climbing up to the lake. I paused at the backside of the lake and enjoyed an Apple Cinnamon Electrolyte Scone and some hot Apple Cider Skratch. After refueling, I hopped back on the bike and climbed all the way up to Turtle Rock. I paused here for a few photos and a Skratch Rice Cake. Recharged I hopped on the bike and made my way through some flowing single track before hitting Sunny Jim climb. The bike began dropping the chain when climbing and shifting into the easiest gear. This caused me to have to consistently hop off the bike, get the chain back on, and make sure it stayed on before continuing onward. I dealt with this issue all the way to the top of Black Mountain, and was excited for the downhill part of the ride that was ahead of me. I snapped a couple of photos at the top of Black Mountain and downed another Skratch Rice Cake. I made my way down through Montebello and returned to the parking lot. I survived the ride with a huge smile on my face, and stoke tank full. It took me 3 bottles of Skratch Super Fuel, 2 bottles of Skratch Hydration Sport, 2 Maurten 100 Caf 100 gels, 2 sleeves of Clif Black Cherry Blocks, 2 Skratch Rice Cakes, and an Electrolyte Scone to fuel this adventure.