Last Day to Register for 2013 Leadville 100 Lottery

January 31st, 2013

Powerline Leadville 100

Powerline Climb

Today, January 31st, is the last day to register for the 2013 Leadville 100 lottery for your chance to dig deep going up Powerline and on the rest of the course on August 10th. You have until midnight MST but if you plan on registering and haven’t, I’d suggest you do it as soon as possible just in case you have issues with registering. Head over to this page to register.

As has been the case for the last several years, there’s a $15 charge plus fees just to sign up for the lottery. This fee gets donated to charity though. Also the entry fee if you get picked in the lottery has gone up yet again. It’s now up to $345.

Although the Leadville 100 lottery used to be the only the only way to get into the Leadville 100, now there are the qualifiers to get a slot. There are also various charity slots that can be used to gain a Leadville 100 entry.

Good luck to everybody that is in the lottery! I’ve entered the lottery again in hopes of making my 10th start. Since I had a streak of 3 DNFs, I’ll be going for finish number 7.

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Global Fat Bike Day

November 30th, 2012

Fat Bikes in Colorado Springs

Photo Courtesy of Allen Beauchamp

Fat-bikes.com has declared tomorrow, December 1st as Global Fat Bike Day. They’ll be having a get together in Wisconsin. Right here in Colorado Springs, we’re going to have our own fat bike fun. Pedal of Littleton is having a fat bike event up there too.

You may not heard of fat bikes but they’re gaining popularity. Fat bikes are mountain bikes with extra wide tires that were created for riding in snow. The tires can be twice as wide as a regular mountain bike tire. They also work well in sand.

Racers for the Iditarod Trail Invitational would weld 2 rims together to get enough flotation in the snow. Then the Surly Pugsley was created and better wheels and tires came along. Now the Salsa Mukluk and Surly Moonlander are popular fat bikes.

Tomorrow’s event here in Colorado Springs is in Sand Creek near Platte Avenue. The Hub bike shop and the Surly rep will be on hand with some demo bikes including Moonlanders. For more details on the fat bike demo, see the event page on Facebook.

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Black Friday Outdoor and Cycling Gear Deals 2012

November 22nd, 2012

Here’s a list of outdoor and cycling related deals for Black Friday and through the weekend to Cyber Monday. Some of the deals are already available and some are just on Black Friday or Cyber Monday so check the details.

A couple big deals are 40% off regular priced items and 20% off sale items at Konasports and up to 30% off at Sierra Trading Post. See list below for coupon codes. The list is alphabetical by store name.

Altrec

Backcountry.com

Backcountry.com is running a few different sales through 11/28/12 with up to 70% off and includes free 2-day shipping on $50+ orders.

Bike Nashbar

Take an extra 20% off orders over $50 including bikes and frames through Sunday with code 72635. Some exclusions. Free shipping on Monday and Tuesday with code 43841 on orders over $25.

Climb High

25% off Rab, Patagonia, Brooks Range & ISIS. 20% Off All Ice Climbing Gear. Free shipping and free returns on all orders. Deals run Thursday through Monday.

CycloCamping.com

DC

Spend $125 and Get $25 OFF Your Next Order & Free Shipping. Offer Expires 11/26 at Midnight.

Derailed

15% Off Sitewide on Snowboard and Ski Apparel and Accessories and More.

Dogfunk

Equipe Sport

Getz

Save up to 50% on The North Face + Free Shipping over $75. Good through 12/1/12.

Giantnerd

Up to 80% off bike and outdoor gear.

Half-Moon Outfitters

Save an Extra 20% Off Select The North Face Items through 12/3 while supplies last, with promo code: tnfsale. Free Shipping on orders over $49!

Icebreaker

Jenson USA

Lots of great bike and bike accessory deals.

Konasports

Get 40% of regular priced with coupon code BCW40 and 20% off sale items with code BCW20. Excludes UGG, Oakley and Nixon . Free 2 day priority shipping in the US excluding oversize items. Click here to visit Konasports.

Moosejaw

Save 20% on almost everything at Moosejaw. No code necessary! Deal excludes some brands. Ends 11/25/12.

Pactimo

30% Off Cycling Apparel – Jerseys, Jackets & More! Sale runs through Monday.

Performance Bikes

Door busters in every category including bikes. Take an extra 20% off items other than door busters and bikes. Ends Sunday. $20 off orders over $100 on Monday.

Peter Glenn

Extra 20% off sale items on Monday with coupon code CYBMON12. Excludes skis, ski boots and ski bindings.

ProBoardShop

Up to 70% Off Snowboards, Skis, Outerwear, and much more through Monday. Click here to see.

Real Cyclist

Biggest Sale of the Season – Up to 50% Off thousands of bike items.

REI

Save on Gear with REI’s Cyber Monday Deals! Online only at REI.com. Save 50% on all REI Brand Outerwear for Men, Women, Kids on Friday only.

Rock Creek

Sierra Trading Post

Soul Poles

Get 20% off custom ski poles and free shipping with coupon code cybersoul.

Tahoe Mountain Sports

30% Off All Patagonia Clothing for Black Friday-Cyber Monday AND Get Free Shipping Too. Ends Monday. Also check their sale page.

The Clymb

Get the best prices of the year Monday only. Expires 11/27/2012 At 8:00AM PST.

TriVillage

20% Off Almost Everything for Running, Cycling & Swimming + Free Shipping over $75 w/ code: BLACKFRIDAY20. Ends Monday night.

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Input on Biking Pikes Peak

November 7th, 2012

Pikes Peak Summit by Bike

Cyclists got a chance to bike the Pikes Peak Highway during September. I took advantage of it and rode from my house to the top of Pikes Peak and then down Barr Trail. I know lots of people who also rode. The’s no reason for it to not be open all the time the Pikes Peak Highway is.

The Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation Advisory Board is taking input on allowing bikes on the Pikes Peak road in the future at their meeting tomorrow, November 8th. The meeting starts at 7:30 AM. Bikes on Pikes Peak is fairly far down on the agenda so if you can’t arrive until a little after 8 you should be there in time and give input. The meeting is at parks headquarters, 1401 Recreation Way.

Hope to see you there! You can check out my Pikes Peak photos and ride report here.

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Ring the Peak Race 2012 Photos

October 7th, 2012

Ring the Peak Race 2012

Ring the Peak started and ended frosty with icy drizzle as we started. It was chilly but pretty nice in between with even some blue skies and sun. I had asthma issues the second half and had to keep stopping to warm my fingers from Elk Park down to Pipeline. I had frost on my eyelashes and my bottle froze on the decent. It wasn’t as cold from Pipeline down but still plenty cold. I was 1:25 faster than last year with 10:50. I was still slow but headed in the right direction.

Here’s a few photos until I get a chance to write up more on the race.

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Pikes Peak by Bike

September 29th, 2012

Pikes Peak by Bike

Bikes have long been banned on the Pikes Peak Highway but there have always been people interested in riding it. Until last year though, parts of it were still gravel so it wasn’t road bike friendly.

There have been a few opportunities to ride up the Pikes Peak road over the years. Back in the 90s, there was a mountain bike race up the top 8 miles. The last couple years, Assault from the Peak started in Manitou and went to the Summit. This year it was called Pikes Peak Cycling Hillclimb and the start was moved up to Crystal Reservoir.

Back around the year 2000 when most of the road above Crystal Reservoir was still dirt, there was a trial of letting cyclists ride bikes on their own during September. Because of the dirt, it meant either riding a mountain bike or cross bike.

The thing that made it tough during that trial was the gate opened at 6:30 AM and bikes had to be off the road by 9 AM. The lowest you could start riding was Crystal Reservoir but even for a fit rider it was tough to ride to the summit and back in that time. I rode it with a friend. We parked a vehicle in Manitou and on the way down took the Elk Park Trail to Barr Trail. Even then I think it was nearly 9 by the time we got off the road.

This month, September 4-30, there’s finally another trial of allowing bikes on the Pikes Peak Highway. This time bikes are allowed during normal highway hours and can start at any point. Riders are required to sign a special waiver form. It’s $12 per person or $8 for groups of 4 or more.

Pikes Peak from Garden of the GodsLast Sunday the weather forecast was great and it fit in my schedule to ride up Pikes Peak. I rode from house and hit a trail through Garden of the Gods on my way to the Pikes Peak Highway gate. It was an absolutely beautiful morning!

It was after 10 when I got to the tollgate and by the time a group of 10 cyclists signed the waivers it was nearly 10:30 by the time I got through the gate. If they do allow bikes on the Pikes Peak road after this trial, I definitely wouldn’t start up that late during the summer and it’s pushing it even this time of the year.

The first few miles climb fairly steep before moderating. There’s even a little bit downhill at Crystal Reservoir. After the halfway picnic area, it’s up, up, up until well above timberline. Around Devil’s playground, there’s a slight downhill that gives a break before the final push to the summit.

Since I was going to ride down Barr Trail, I was riding my Santa Cruz Tallboy. It certainly doesn’t make for a fast ride on pavement and I took advantage of the low gears and plodded along. I was in no hurry and enjoyed the great views and stopped and took plenty of photos along the way.

It was a warm day for late September and it wasn’t until I was above timberline that I put on my arm and knee warmers. I didn’t need my vest until after I reached the summit.

Pikes Peak Summit by BikeAfter hanging out with friends for a bit at the summit, I headed over the edge to start the ride down Barr Trail. I haven’t ridden Barr Trail down from the summit in a long time because it’s so tough. It was even tougher after riding the bike for over 6 hours.

I rode very little of the first 1/2 mile down the 16 Golden Stairs. After that I was on and off the bike a lot. I could see a couple bikes below me as I headed down. I caught up to them after a little while. One of them was another local Leadville 100 racer that I know.

Below Barr Camp, Barr Trail is all rideable and I made better time. As late as it was, there probably wouldn’t have been many Manitou Incline hikers and runners on the trail but I still cut through Experimental Forest and down Long’s Ranch road to US 24.

According to my Garmin Edge 705 download, I rode 55.56 miles and climbed 10,945 feet. The vertical seems a bit high however. My elapsed time was 10:54 with 9:06 of ride time. Riding from my house made a tough ride even tougher but it certainly was a great day on the bike.

Some photos of my ride are below and there are more Pikes Peak Highway/Barr Trail bike ride photos here. You can also check out my ride on Strava.

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Palmer Park Pro Cycling Classic

September 21st, 2012

Palmer Park Sand Creek Series Race

The next few weekends are busy with local mountain bike racing as we transition from summer into fall. This Sunday is the Pro Cycling Classic in Palmer Park. It was originally scheduled for July 1st but had to be rescheduled because of park closures due to the Waldo Canyon Fire. Pre-registration through Pre-Race.com ends tonight, September 21st. There is also race day registration for an extra fee.

Race distances will be typical cross-country lengths. If I’m reading the course map right, it uses a similar course to the 2 Sand Creek Series races this summer but in reverse. I really like riding and racing in Palmer Park there but think I’ll ride up the Pikes Peak Highway that day instead.

There will be a pizza lunch and the number of pizzas ordered will be based on the pre-registration numbers so Andy would like everyone to pre-register. Donations collected for the pizza lunch will go to Kids on Bikes so take some cash. There will be a kids fun race at 12:15 that is free.

Go to SandCreekSports.com for all the Pro Cycling Classic details.

Next weekend, September 29 & 30, is 24 Hour National Mountain Bike Championships also in Palmer Park. Registration for the 24 Hours of Colorado Springs ends this Sunday.

Then coming up on October 6th is the Ring the Peaks Race. This race is a tough 70ish mile ride around Pikes Peak on Ring the Peak Trail. There’s no entry fee and no support.

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Red Rocks, Section 16 and White Acres Trails

September 11th, 2012

Red Rocks Open Space

The next Master Plan meeting for Red Rocks Open Space, Section 16 and White Acres is tonight at 6:30. It is being held at the Westside Community Center, 1628 W. Bijou St. The focus of tonight’s meeting is trails.

Info on trails in the areas and other information on the Master Plan process is posted on the Colorado Springs website. The schedule of future meetings for those open spaces is also posted there.

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Leadville 100 Video 2012

August 19th, 2012

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Last weekend I lined up for my 9th Leadville 100. It was my slowest of 6 finishes with a time of 11:32.

2 of the last 3 years I started the race sick and dropped out part way through. The other year I had an asthma attack and also didn’t finish so I was happy to get a finish even if it was slow.

Race Day does a cool thing of creating a video from clips at the various check points. We have a timing chip on our bikes so they know when we went past. The video of me is above. Search for other riders here.

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Last Minute Leadville 100 Advice

August 10th, 2012

Leadville 100 Start

It’s hard to believe it’s nearly time for another Leadville 100 mountain bike race. A couple years ago someone emailed me off list for tips on making the 12 hour time cut-off for a heavier rider. He was 195 lbs. Most of the tips apply no matter your weight so I thought I’d re-post them here in case they’ll help someone. They’re really just
random tidbits.

I’ve dropped some weight this year but I’m currently over 40 pounds heavier than the year I rode 8:18. I’ll be much slower than that but I hope to break my streak of not finishing the last 3 years. I think I’m in about 11 hour finishing shape. Hopefully I don’t get food poisoning, have asthma issues or get a cold this year. Those are the things that derailed me that last 3 years.

—————————————————————————–

Random Leadville 100 Race Day Advice

One year I was 190 and finished in 9:02 after a couple mechanicals cost me close to 10 minutes. Weight is big factor on the Leadville 100 course but if you have a good engine and ride smart, you can still do well.

Make sure you don’t go out too hard but still keep moving and a good pace. You’ll most likely get caught in a traffic jam on St. Kevins. Don’t panic. I see way too many guys try passing and wasting a huge amount of energy. In a mile or less you’ll be able to easily pass.

Don’t waste time at aid stations. If you have somebody crewing for you, you should be stopped 5 minutes or less over the whole race. Even without a crew, I think stopped time should be 10 minutes or less. Somebody missed the time cut-off by a few minutes last year but said they didn’t know how they could have done it faster. They went on to say they only spent a total of 30 minutes at the aid stations.

Most of the time if you’re hurting you’ll actually recover better if you keep moving but go to a couple easier gears. That way the blood keeps moving and flushing the muscles. If you’re on a climb when that happens and you don’t have any more gears, get off and walk. If you really feel you need a break, don’t stop more than 30 seconds.

If you can’t keep turning the pedals smoothly on a climb, you’ll probably be almost as fast walking and will use slightly different muscles. If you have the descending skills, you can make up a bunch of time on the descents. For us that are heavier, that’s a time to recover some of the hard work on the climbs.

Try getting in a group on the pavement section near the fish hatchery and even on the Pipeline. As a bigger rider, you probably have more power than the skinny guys so you’ll tend to want to ride faster. It’s alright to take a little more than your share of pulls but also take advantage of the group and drop to the back and do some recovering.

Stick to what you’re used to eating during training rides. There’s lots of yummy looking junk at the aid stations but hold off and treat yourself to something yummy after finishing. For a race of this length, you’re best off sticking to all liquids for fuel. If you didn’t train that way, don’t go totally liquid during the race but try to do more liquid than solids. The solids slow your digestion and altitude also tends to slow digestion. I have raced 24 hour solo events on liquids only and it’s worked better than when
I ate some solids.

The race is long and you’ll probably need more electrolytes than are in your drinks. Even if it isn’t super hot, the dryness and the intense sunlight at altitude make me need more endurolytes than I normally do. I like the Endurolytes from Hammer Nutrition but NUUN seems to work well too.

Good luck and if you see me say Hi!

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