levi's gran fondo

Questions about bike hire abroad and everything light bike related. No off-topic chat please

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fromtrektocolnago
Posts: 1004
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 10:15 pm

by fromtrektocolnago

anyone do this ride? i signed up for 2018. interesting in hearin people's thougts on the route and whether disc is good idea or wider tires etc. any tips or experiences welcome. it's my first california cycling experience after riding the north east and having been to europe a number of times.
Colnago C-59 (Dura Ace)
Firefly(Ultegra)
Trek 5200(ultegra)

by Weenie


spdntrxi
Posts: 1734
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:11 pm

by spdntrxi

if you do the standard gran fondo.. you dont need disc. Only the descent before the H Brigde is super steep... but it's not super technical. Just brake hard for the turn :) You can get flying on Meyers grade as well...as you make your way to the coast. I've heard blowouts on that, but see no reason for it. Car traffic is light and once on the main road it's a nice surface.

I never liked the road conditions personally, so I stopped doing Levi's. My eyes never do well in mixed sun/shade and there is alot of that there combined with shitty roads. I have however never flated there which is a miracle.

so in summary only these 2 segments you need to worry about.
1.https://www.strava.com/segments/7883810
2.https://www.strava.com/segments/8679639 (some really nice views on this part.. I always stop to take a picture.

have fun.. it's been a few years for me. I've been opting for Jensie's Fonda which is the week before.

Mr.Gib
Posts: 3144
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:12 pm
Location: eh?

by Mr.Gib

I have done the route though not during the Fondo. As with many of the roads in the area, car traffic can cause the surface to ripple in the braking points on the descents, so you end up with tarmac washboard. You can literally lose contact with the road in a few places. And as noted, many of these spots are in dappled light or in complete shade from overhanging trees. Coming out of bright sunlight can make the surface impossible to see. You have to be really careful and if you are pushing it you will need some skillz.

That said I would happily ride in the Santa Rosa area any day. Love it.
wheelsONfire wrote: When we ride disc brakes the whole deal of braking is just like a leaving a fart. It happens and then it's over. Nothing planned and nothing to get nervous for.

Bigger Gear
Posts: 329
Joined: Fri Mar 27, 2009 6:58 pm
Location: Wet coast, Canada

by Bigger Gear

I've ridden the regular route 2x and the Panzer the first year they had it. Disc brakes are not needed, but definitely don't bring your nicest, lightest stuff to Sonoma County. The roads are pretty rough, and if you are in a group you are definitely going to hit some holes.

quadzilla
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:42 am

by quadzilla

Like other already said discs are not needed but could be nice especially on the rougher descents. and the roads are pretty rough but scenic. I did the 106 mile route last year and the only change i wish I had made was a bigger race even with 34/28. the first climb is like 1.5k feet but the avg grade was probably above 10%. I was grinding up it and I am reasonably fit. I think the perfect setup would be 28's with discs 52/36-32

spdntrxi
Posts: 1734
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:11 pm

by spdntrxi

Until this past weekend I thought Levi's had bad roads... I just did eroica california on a 30+ year old bike and have a new perspective.

by Weenie


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