About the Ride
If you don’t know what Project Supertraining is, let me sum it up. It is a ride which strives to allow riders to further their fitness and wellbeing by donating to charities. It is a fully supported group ride which prides itself on long base miles in the winter, and hard climbing rides in the summer. A highly elite group of riders join the fun, including current and retired pros like Taylor Phinney, Alex Howes, Matt Cooke, and many others depending on who’s in town.
The route this month was a lung busting 12,000 ft. of climbing and over 90 miles. The ride started at Flatirons Subaru who were generous enough to provide a support vehicle to follow us with food and water. We then headed west up Boulder Canyon to Sugarloaf. This ride reminded me just how much I hate this climb, which is 4.7 miles and nearly 1,900 ft of climbing for an average gradient of 8%. We stopped at the top and regrouped, while everyone got some much needed water after the hot and sweaty climb (I really need to get acclimated for the summer heat).
Photo by Evan Stade
The group then split into two rides, with the A group leaving first. We headed down through Nederland and descended into Central City. We cruised by a BBQ cookout and the smell of burgers and hot dogs only made me more hungry. The folks cooking and blasting music gave us a friendly cheer and we all waved back. We then started the dirt climb called Alps Hill Road. This one was absolutely brutal, with what felt like pitches up to 15%. It was one I’m glad to have ticked off the list, but I will never do again. The most disappointing part? At the top the follow car was nowhere to be found.
We then climbed back out of Central City, passing by the BBQ again greeted by cheering. We were hoping to run into the follow car at some point, and indeed we did, just before we reached Gap Rd.
We then battled Gap Rd, which was a perfect dirt road with little gravel. It turns into Twin Spruce, which features a nice descent. It was then time to battle Gross Dam, which has a very technical descent on gravel, in addition to a nice climb at the end. There were more cars than usual due to Memorial Day weekend, but it was still a complete suffer-fest. It was then time to descend down Flagstaff, which inevitably means we got stuck behind someone driving a rental car, but it was a sigh of relief knowing the climbing was over.
When Technology Doesn’t Work (a rant)
First off, I am not sponsored by any head unit companies, so these are genuine experiences which I paid money for. All was ready to head out for the ride in the morning, complete with kit on and water bottles filled. I then turned on my beloved Wahoo Elemnt Bolt, which I have been using for almost a year now. All I got was a Wahoo logo, and nothing else. Wahoo logo, then blank screen, over and over. Thankfully I used my phone as a backup for this ride, but it couldn’t have happened at a more inconvenient time. Almost 24 hours later, the Bolt stopped this loop and I was finally able to recharge it from 0% battery. No problems, for now. Knock on wood.
Thanks to Ben LaForce for the great header photo!