Posted by: rustymccain | June 8, 2011

We own the Sierras!

We OWN the Sierra Nevada.!!! That’s right. We went right up to the mountains, took a few names and started kicking some butt. What we found out today is that mountains have a way of kicking back. Therefore, the names that should be mentioned as having their butts kicked would be Carson Pass, but also Ray and Rusty. This was the hardest 100 miles I have ever ridden. The girls left today, so we are totally on our own. Carrying out panniers makes a big difference. I never got out of my small chainring on a compact crank for the first 60 miles. To put things in perspective, the fastest I have ever ridden a 100 mile ride is 4 hours and 28 minutes, not great but respectable. Today, at 7 hours and 30 minutes into the ride, we were at Carson Pass, mile 60.


Area around Carson Pass

Despite the toughness it was a spectacular day. The weather could not have been better. We ran into three guys who are doing the same route we are. Then we ran into our new BFF’s Bob and Kristina. They came by Cook’s Station, a small outpost that is one of the few on the climb to Carson Pass, just as we were pulling out. They live in South Lake Tahoe and were just returning from a trip down to San Diego and back. We rode with them for several hours and stopped for lunch with them in Kirkwood, about 6 miles from the summit. They were delightful people and had a wealth of local knowledge that really helped us. Plus, talking with them really helped pass the time. The only problem was that they were really good athletes and it probably pushed us a little harder than we needed to ride. But, it was worth it to develop a new friendship with really nice people.

New Friends!


After Bob and Kristine turned off to head home, Ray and I headed down toward Carson City. We had a screamer of a downhill for quite some time. Pretty cool. My top speed was probably approaching 50 mph, but Ray has an aversion to sanity and never slowed, leaving me in the smoke of my burning brakes. I don’t know how fast he got. He waited on me at one point and we high-tailed it to CC. We made one wrong turn that cost us a couple of miles. Then the winds hit….and I bonked with 20 miles to go.. Ray tried his best to take care of me. It was hard for me to pedal, whine, cry, moan, complain and ask Ray why he talked me into this, all at the same time.


We stopped in the little town of Genoa, where I had a full-sugar 1 liter coke and a big bag of chips for some salt. Nutrition nut, I am. Back to the bikes and on the CC, some 16 miles away. I told Ray to go on and I would just struggle in. But, I think he only had about 10cc’s more energy than me and I kept him in sight the rest of the way. I have to say that I have NEVER been so happy to see a Motel 6 in my life!

We pulled in at 7:30. A nice little 11 and ½ hour ride! We now have 267 miles down and tons of good memories. If I can struggle through tomorrow and another, hopefully easier 100 miler the next day…we get a rest day! That day I will post lessons learned….we have a growing list.


We are bruised and battered…but still in the game!!


  1. So far it sounds like a walk in the park compaired to a normal day at work. You guys hang in there. That noise you hear ahead of you is all your freinds cheering you on. Stay safe.— J

  2. Thank you guys for helping my dad today with his truck tire. He talked about you two all afternoon. I am so grateful to you both.
    I will be following your journey from here forward. When you come back this way our home is open for a nights stay and dinner.
    Safe travels to two special friends.
    Lori (Gene’s Daughter)

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