Climbs USA

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

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ParisCarbon
Posts: 828
Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 5:39 am
Location: Winnipeg Canada

by ParisCarbon

Ive done the Haleakala climb 6 times and its varied on all occasions...

On a good day.. Id expect temps of anywhere from 9-13C at the top.. dewpoint around 3C or so... Generally expect to ride through some kind of cloud from probably arond 5000-8000 area or so.. after that you are generally on top of the cloud....

I made the mistake once of not turning back at the park entrance @ 7500 feet and kept on charging to the top only to be met with pouring rain, wind, and 2C at the top while wearing nothing but jersey and shorts (Im from Canada.. it just seemed like another day haha) Lucky for me there was a family up at the top (the only car) and I begged for a ride down.. luckily they obliged...

I have seen ice on the road at the top more than once....

Your last chance for food/bottled water will be @ approx 3000 at Kula Lodge... next stop 7500 feet... there is water.. don't know the source, but I did fill both bottles and it didn't upset me at all... no water at the top...

Don't be like me and not have warm gear for the descent.. it is a freezing cold long descent... and you will not feel warm until around 2000 feet where the temps gets back to around 75F... down at sea level tyically 84F or so....

There are a few ways up, the offical cycle to the sun route, or there are a few other roads to get you up to the 1700-2100 foot area, after that there is only one road to the roof... have some $$ on ya, if I remember right last year it was either $5 or $10 and the pass was good for a week....

Dalai
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Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:54 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by Dalai

Reviving this thread as my wife asked me where I wanted to go riding in 2013! :D

Taking this a green light I'm keen to start planning. Having ridden in Europe the last two years, I like the idea of heading to the USA with the bike. Especially as I haven't been to the States since 98, it is slightly closer so cheaper airfares, and the AU$ is going gangbusters against the US$.

So hypothetical 3-4 week road trip - does the following sound feasible?

Arrive possibly late August to early September. Flying into Denver and hit the Colorado climbs before the snows arrive then drive to the west coast via Tuscon? and/or Bishop/Tahoe. Spend a week each around San Francisco and then LA/San Diego?

Flying back home from LA.

Suggestions for car / van hire (possibly small campervan?) and better towns to stay at including accommodation suggestions would be greatfully received.

Will be ordering The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike) as mentioned earlier. :thumbup:

by Weenie


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AGW
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Location: Tucson, AZ

by AGW

Dalai, that sounds like a fun route to take because you'd see so many varied climates and landscapes. CO to southern AZ is a huge difference... :twisted:

Please let me know if you decide to come through Tucson. Mt. Lemmon is fantastic for a home-town climb, and there are other local rides worth joining if you're in town for more than a day.

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prendrefeu
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Location: Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California
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by prendrefeu

Dalai,

Excellent trip you've got planned! Should be lots of fun and you'll definitely be exposed to a diverse swath of Americana as well.
Just a slight modification to your route:
Colorado's Rocky towns -> Tucson, Arizona -> Los Angeles -> Sierras -> Tahoe -> SF Bay -> Home

You might as well skip south to Tucson, visit FWB and climb Mt. Lemmon. Utah is really spectacular for mountain biking if that's your thing on this trip, but in the end it isn't so bad to swing down south instead of crossing Utah & Nevada. On the way you'll also be able to visit the famous Monument Valley and, again if riding some dirt, North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Even if you are not doing any dirt riding, check out Bryce, Zion and Grand Canyons. If you delay your trip a bit more towards the fall you do risk weather change in the Colorado Rockies and the Sierras, but Zion Canyon is also officially 'closed' but still accessible which makes it an absolute dream to ride... no cars, very few people, open road, incredible landscape.
Exp001 || Other projects in the works.

weekapaugin
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Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:18 pm
Location: phoenix, az

by weekapaugin

If you're going to come to AZ to do Lemmon, you have to do Mt. Graham. It's in the middle of nowhere central-eastern AZ, and is a better climb IMO. Peaks a little higher than Lemmon, and more variety in scenery, roads, and some switchbacks instead of long steady stretches. I did a Lemmon / Graham weekend a month ago and it was over 15,000ft of climbing over the course of 110mi between the two days, both fantastic rides.

I haven't done a whole lot of riding in CA, but a big second to Palomar Mountain and the Santa Ynez valley, especially Figueroa Mountain.

Dalai
Posts: 1491
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:54 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by Dalai

Thanks for the suggestions so far, please keep them coming! :thumbup:

I have just ordered the Colorado and California editions of The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike) and will be getting these as a Christmas present from my wife, so looks like this trip will happen!

worstshotever
Posts: 573
Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 10:07 pm

by worstshotever

There's some insanely good riding to be had in West Virginia, and with the DC metro area a stone's throw up the road, which also has a thriving local riding scene, it's not an entirely unsuitable place to visit, nothwithstanding it's West Virginia (no offence, West Virginia). There's even a place devoted to cycling visitors who are in solid form and looking for some guided rides with insane vertical on forested and farm roads that offer super awesome bikefun: the Lost River Barn. A number of the local DC and VA cycling teams use it for their spring and fall training gigs. Not Southern California poofy if that's what you're into, no Kardashians likely to show up for a colonic or anything (no offense, California), but for any serious cyclist who finds himself in the mid-atlantic a trip to W Va is definitely worth considering.

lqdedison
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Joined: Tue Feb 07, 2012 10:51 am

by lqdedison

This thread would be a lot cooler with pictures...

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AGW
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Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 2:11 pm
Location: Tucson, AZ

by AGW

This is about 10-11 miles up Mt. Lemmon a few months ago. It was probably 98 degrees in town, and 75 degrees where I took this picture.

Image

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djconnel
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Location: San Francisco, CA
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by djconnel

Key is when in San Francisco area to hook up with some of the excellent group rides, finding those well matched to your climbing ability. I am willing to provide guidance there.

Dalai
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Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:54 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by Dalai

Appreciate the offer djconnel! Where is the ideal area to be based in San Francisco to easily access the best riding?

Mt Graham is now on the list weekapaugin :thumbup:

I wouldn't say no to some sweet MTB prendrefeu, though will only have room to bring one bike so will be leaving the MTB at home... Zion is beeautiful - visited back in 1995 when on a climbing road trip - though that was rock climbing and for 6 months! Just checked my leave allowance and I only have just over three weeks available by late August. :(

wetpaint
Posts: 82
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 2:55 am
Location: USA

by wetpaint

Sounds like it's going to be an awesome trip Dalai. While in Colorado, I'd recommend doing independence pass from Aspen and the Copper Triangle

eric
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Location: Santa Cruz, California, USA
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by eric

Dalai wrote:Thanks for the suggestions so far, please keep them coming! :thumbup:

I have just ordered the Colorado and California editions of The Complete Guide to Climbing (by Bike) and will be getting these as a Christmas present from my wife, so looks like this trip will happen!



The California book is poorly laid out. It's got more California climbs than the USA book, but the USA book is much easier to read. And most of the good climbs are in the USA book.

Dalai
Posts: 1491
Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2004 10:54 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

by Dalai

Leave has now been booked! :grin:

Latest rough plan -

Looking at now flying into San Francisco late August and out of LA three weeks later. Car hire quote is the same for this as it was LA return and saves me the drive between the two. This frees up another day to ride rather than drive...

Couple of days for San Francisco area climbs.

Drive to Reno spending six days or so looking to ride as many of these as possible (Mt Rose + Geiger Grade rd, Death Ride, Horseshoe meadow + Whitney Portal, Bristlecone, Sherwin Grade-Rock Creek-Mosquito Flat and Onion Valley Rd).

Drive to CO looking to ride (Independence pass both sides, Copper Triangle, Trail Ridge rd Grand Lake Estes Park return, Mt Evans, Pikes Peak). If I can't fit them in riding I may have to just drive the CNM and Million Dollar hwy.

Drive to Tuscon AZ (Mt Lemmon, Mt Graham)

Then unfortunately only a few days left. So drive to San Diego/LA and hit as many climbs over these last remaining days...

Sound reasonable or even possible?

by Weenie


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HammerTime2
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Location: Wherever there's a mountain beckoning to be climbed

by HammerTime2

You might want to investigate further as to whether you'll be allowed to cycle Pikes Peak http://www.coloradoconnection.com/news/story.aspx?id=796889. I only found out about this (temporary?) change of policy when checking just now. It had only been open to cyclists for special events.

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