King Ridge Summary

After a busy work week with several nights lasting until midnight I awoke to pouring rain Saturday morning. Thankfully the coffee timer had worked and at 6:00 A.M, in the dark, I stumbled out to the barn and bike shop to load the truck for the days Hopper. For some, rain would have been an ominous sign, but I began to feel giddy. As the coffee began to jump start my system and Los Lobos on too loud, I accidentally hit the siren switch on the megaphone. Fortunately the neighbors  are far away and by the time I had found the off button the game was on! I arrived early and had time to chat with Sag Monkey, the days support, as we waited for folks to arrive. The first was Brian Staby who as a firefighter had just got off work at 8:00…A.M.! Soon to arrive were George Hope, Brian Anderson, Gabe Cheese, Todd Weitzenberg, Ray Simone and all the other brothers who just couldn’t stay away.  The weather couldn’t scare away the  ever-dedicated Hopperites Jennifer White and Romany either. The vibe was great and although the downpour continued up until the start we had plenty of space inside the Community Center to get psyched up for the day. Gave a short speech and let the way down Boho Hwy. and though the rain had stopped, the road was soaked. We all got down safely and were contemplating a piss stop when Ted and Jadey decided to launch an attack. There was a collective sigh in the group but no one wanted to spot those two a couple of minutes, even with such a long day ahead. We quickly brought them back and as we hit Hwy headed North the wind was to our back, the clouds began to break and the tempo increased. The days first climb began as close to sea level as possible without being in the water at Russian Gulch. Most were worried about Meyers Grade but the pitch, though not nearly so steep, is relentless. At this point I watched the lead group ride away; this I expected. Then the next group caught me, this I didn’t. Oh well, in for the long haul. As we neared the turn onto Meyers I managed to catch up to George, Gabe and Brian Andersen and was just hoping to hang on. As the pitch hit over 20% I lost contact and saved a little for the rollers over the top where I latched on and a solid group of 7 or 8 headed into the descent on Timber Cove. Was good to follow George and everyone made it safe to route 1. The group up the road consisted of Barry Wicks, Roger Bartels, Shawn Rosental, Ted Simpkins, Michael Hosey, Todd W., Ryan Price and Glenn Fant. I figured they would break apart on either Kruse or Hauser Bridge but was not planning on catching anyone. We took a quick nature brake on Kruse and got strung along by Cheese who was feeling fresher, and fitter, than the rest. We all summited together and then Brian and I ripped the descent and I was hoping to get enough to help me hang on up Hauser. Alas, this was not the case. As the climb hit over 24%!!! I did all I could to keep it together. We each came into the feed at Tin Barn and King spread apart and hit the rolling climbs and descents on King Ridge in the same way. I say Brian and Gabe slip away and George in no mans lands dangling there. He knows King Ridge better than anyone so I figured he’d catch them on the descent into Caz. Finally on top I managed to catch up to Doug McKenzie, Paul and Matt and were joined by Michael Jordan. Yes, THE Michael Jordan! As we neared Caz we caught George and had a solid group of 6 rolling together all the way to Camp Meeker. It’s a quintessential Hopper moment, bonded in timeless flight, conservation of momentum and effort; minutes stitched together that made up the good part of an hour, helping each other to the finish. Sizing the group up I had aspirations of taking the group, only to have simultaneous hamstring and quad cramps. The grip slipped away and put two minutes on me from Camp Meeker to the finish but I managed to stay on my bike. Never have Salt and Pepper Kettle Chips and a cold BodyAmor ever tasted so good! Thanks for the good time. Stay tuned for Hopper # 5 info. It’s April 28th and we’ll be starting in Santa Rosa. If anyone rode slowly enough (or just took time to look around) to be able to tell me exactly where this amazing redwood tree is, next Hopper is on me. Cheers, Mig

Photo by Morgan Fletcher


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3 Responses to King Ridge Summary

  1. JD says:

    I think it is just up from the Parmeter Ranch on the left side of the road (KR Road that is…) if you are heading toward Tin Barn or on the right if you are heading away from TB. If you don’t know the ranches back there this description means nothing. I don’t think there is anything on Kruse that is that big but my tongue is usually in my spokes on that climb so anything is possible.

    • admin says:

      You got it JD! How can you look up from the time trial position? Next Hopper on us! You coming? Hope to get a tow on Butts Canyon

  2. JD says:

    Aways interesting how my positioning falls apart. I’ll take time trial. Albeit at the start of the ride the position on the bike resembled a somewhat more classic set up; akin to, if not taken directly from, directions to bike fit in the 1972 C.O.N.I. Manual. Think melt down at about Hauser Bridge. Great ride and it is great to watch guys go fast up hill. I’ll be working on the 28th but I will see you in May for Skaggs. Don’t worry about any comps, I’ll pay. Thanks for a fun day on the bike.

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