Scenic Eye Candy from the 2012 High Sierra Fall Century: Update - 2013 Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century & Gran Fondo
If you'd like to experience what has already been designated as a "Top Ten Century" bike ride (Bicycling Magazine, June 2012) and what is certain to become a top ten Gran Fondo bike ride, then you've got to register for and attend the 2013 Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo on September 7th, 2013. Now is the time to commit to doing this epic "bucket-list" ride and to start training for it. The Eastside of the Sierra Nevada Mountains to the south of Yosemite National Park is one of the most spectacular places on earth and it is also one of the most spectacular places to ride a bike! The scenery is breath-taking and the vast majority of the great local roads for cycling have minimal traffic on them. With the inclusion of the "Gran Fondo" option this year, the entire event is getting the biggest upgrade in its 17 year history. We'll have additional rest stops fully stocked with everything you need to refuel, some special treats, a light lunch mid-way through the ride and smiling volunteers welcoming you to each musically-themed rest stop. The after-ride party back at "The Village" in Mammoth Lakes will feature a delectable buffet meal, live music, the Kamikaze Bike Games Expo and the party will continue into the night just up the road at Canyon Lodge with Kamikaze Bike Games downhill events and live music going on into the evening. The week of September 4th through 8th is going to be all about bikes in the town of Mammoth Lakes with the Kamikaze Bike Games happening Wednesday through Sunday and the Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century & Gran Fondo on Saturday, September 7th, 2013! And..., even if you aren't ready to ride the full Century or Gran Fondo bike ride routes, check out our 30, 45 and 60 mile route options. 30, 45 and 60 Mile riders get to ride some of the best pavement and see some of the most spectacular scenery on the entire Century and Gran Fond route. No matter what route you choose, you'll have a great, perhaps, "epic" time and we want you all to come to "The Village" in the town of Mammoth Lakes after your ride for a great meal, music and party. Last, if you can get to Mammoth a few days early to acclimate to the altitude and do some training rides, our local Road Club, Eastside Velo, will be hosting daily Training Rides the week leading up to the High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo. We have some scenic pictures below courtesy of local cyclist, ESV Club member and photographer, Steve Schmunk, to whet your appetite. Click the pictures to open a larger view and slide show. Then we hope you'll go straight to our Registration Page and register today for the 2013 Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century & Gran Fondo. Thank you!
Exciting New Things are In-Store for the 2013 High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo - Top Century Bike Rides and Gran Fondos
There is A LOT to say about what we're doing this year and we are just updating our website, online registration and other marketing and information right now. Please check back here at the Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo website and our Facebook page regularly for updates. We are literally adding content to this site daily right now getting it fully built-out, but for the time being, here are a few key points to whet your appetite and interest in the 2013 High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo!
-We have a new name - the "Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo"
-Online registration under the "Register" link on this page will be available starting this Wednesday, February 13.
-We have added a "Gran Fondo" to our ride offering this year which will include timing chips and ride results based on age and gender. Bring your friends and see who is the fastest on this amazing route!
-Both the new Gran Fondo route and our High Sierra Fall Century bike ride routes will now start and finish at "The Village" in the town of Mammoth Lakes with all of the fanfare of a rockin' bike party including an actual start and finish line with an announcer, timed results for Gran Fondo riders, mass starts with CHP traffic control for all Gran Fondo and Century Bike riders to get them safely out of the town of Mammoth Lakes, a great after-ride party at "The Village" in Mammoth, an awesome buffet, free pictures of each rider from every ride route length, entertainment and the Kamikaze BIke Games expo.
-Our fantastic 60, 45 and 30 Mile routes will still start and finish at the Whitmore Ball Fields and these routes include some of the best sections of the High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo routes. After completing their rides, 60, 45 and 30 riders will join the Gran Fondo and 100 Mile Century bike riders at "The Village" in Mammoth for the afore-mentioned after-ride party for an awesome buffet, their free ride pictures, entertainment and the Kamikaze BIke Games expo.
-Finally, we are now part of the "Kamikaze Bike Games" in Mammoth Lakes. This is exciting because the Kamikaze Bike Games is an update and revival of some very cool cycling stuff that happened in Mammoth Lakes years ago. Mammoth has a long history of cycling (both road and mountain) and some of the bike events that took place here over the years including the Whiskey Creek Stage Races, the National Off-Road Bicycle Association (NORBA) Championships and the Kamikaze Bike Races on Mammoth Mountain were pretty fantastic. Well, that in new and different forms, is all on its way back during a five-day period starting this September 4th through 8th in Mammoth. The Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo bike ride is now one of the key components of the Mammoth Kamikaze Bike Games week. Check back on our site frequently www.FallCentury.org for updates and you can also check the Kamikaze Bike games website regularly for updates here MAMMOTH KAMIKAZE BIKE GAMES.
Our goal is to eventually turn the five-day Mammoth Kamikaze Bike Games week and the Mammoth High Sierra Fall Century and Gran Fondo into a kind of huge "Burning Man" festival in the mountains for cyclists! Ha!
High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride - Basketball Legend, Bill Walton, Joins Eastside Velo Club members on the Fall Century Route and other Great Rides throughout Mono and Inyo Counties During July 2012
Basketball legend and avid cyclist, Bill Walton, was in Mammoth Lakes from July 20th through July 25th raising money for the Eastern Sierra Land Trust as well as cycling throughout Mono and Inyo Counties with members of local road cycling club, Eastside Velo. While in Mammoth, Bill rode the route of the High Sierra Fall Century bike ride and loved the course - see his video below. Bill also rode a lot of the other great routes in both Mono and Inyo Counties and had a great time. Here are a few pictures of Bill riding and spending time with some of the local Eastside Velo members.
High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride - Basketball Legend Bill Walton Rides the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride Route July 22, 2012
Basketball Legend and avid cycling enthusiast, Bill Walton, was in Mammoth Lakes in July fundraising for the Eastern Sierra Land Trust and riding his bike all over Mono and Inyo Counties with members of the Mammoth Lakes-based Eastside Velo Cycling Club. Watch Bill's video (notice his new ESV kit) as he invites you to come out for the 2012 High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride on September 8th, 2012. Unfortunately, there is wind noise over part of the audio, but you can still catch Bill's enthusiasm for the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride route. In classic Walton style, he finishes his comments with "you have been suitably warned, miss this at your own peril!" The other four videos are short clips of Walton riding the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride route with members of the Eastside Velo Cycling Club. Local photographer and huge Bill Walton fan, Steve Schmunk, shot the 2nd and 3rd videos with his iPhone during the ride on the High Sierra Fall Century route. The 4th video was shot with Bill while he rode with Eastside Velo Club members a few days later.
Photography services for the event are provided by Captivating Sports Photos.
Other Great Bike Routes and a Road Cycling Club in the Vicinity of the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride
The road cycling opportunities in Mono County and Inyo Counties are nearly endless. There are tons of routes to ride with very little traffic, good road surfaces, any combination of flats and climbing you want and....did we mention amazing scenery? YES, amazing scenery is everywhere in Mono and Inyo Counties!
First, try a ride with Eastside Velo! The Eastside Velo Cycling Club (http://eastsidevelo.org/) based in Mammoth Lakes is a great road cycling club and key supporter of the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride. ESV runs regular group rides from Spring to Fall throughout Mono and Inyo Counties. ESV has over 230 members and group rides typically see 30 to 50 riders show up. The rides include all ability levels and are usually followed by great pot-luck meals. ESV has started to work on a "Rides of the Eastern Sierra" section of its website and will be adding content to this page going forward. You can check out what they already have up at this link http://eastsidevelo.org/?q=sierrarides
The best current resource, other than becoming acquainted with the local riders of ESV by attending a Club ride, for finding the best rides on the eastern side of the High Sierras is a new book titled "Road Biking California's Sierra Nevada: The Best Rides from Lake Tahoe to Mount Whitney" by Jim Barnes and Nate Greenberg. Jim and Nate are local riders who know the area well and one of them is a civil engineer so we know the data is good! The book is published by Wolverine Publishing and this may be one of the most beautiful road cycling guide books we've ever seen. If you'd like to do more riding in and around Mammoth Lakes, Bishop and throughout the "EastSide" of the High Sierras, check this book out. You can purchase it at Footloose Sports in Mammoth or here http://www.rei.com/product/830693/road-biking-californias-sierra-nevada and other online sources as well as the publisher at http://wolverinepublishing.com/.
So you're wondering what's the best way to get to Mammoth Lakes for High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride? First, let us say, making the effort is worth it! The High Sierra Fall Century was chosen as a "Top Ten Century Bike Ride" by Bicycling Magazine in their June, 2012 issue. The route, support, and after-ride party and BBQ feast are great and the scenery is amazing! If you've been here, you know. If not, you'll be glad you came - if possible, plan to come early and stay a day or two after. This place is an outdoor recreation wonderland......
Anyway...., you want to know the best way to get here. Here you go:
First, Mammoth Lakes has daily air service provided by Alaska Airlines which connects through LAX. Alaska Airlines is a sponsor and strong supporter of road cycling in Mammoth Lakes. If you're interested in flying to the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride, check out Alaska's webpage here:
GETTING HERE BY CAR:
FROM LOS ANGELES, ORANGE COUNTY AND SAN DIEGO: Ultimately, you want to get to Highway 395 N. as it comes all the way to Mammoth Lakes. From LA, either take Interstate 15 N. to HWY 395 N. towards Bishop just after the top of Cajon Pass (if you see the In-in-Out Burger on the right, you've gone too far!) Alternatively, take Interstate 5 N. to Hwy 14 N. through Palmdale and Lancaster to Mojave. At the north end of Mojave, take the HWY 395 turn to the north towards Bishop. For Orange County and San Diego, use your best knowledge of the So. Cal. freeway systems to get close to LA and follow the LA instructions above.
FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA, coming through Yosemite National park can be the fastest route if you can avoid holiday and weekend tourist traffic. Fortunately, in September after Labor Day, tourist traffic in Yosemite is a lot less that during the summer. The drive through Yosemite is fantastic, but you should verify ahead of time that the roads are open and if you have time, detour down to the Valley floor. If Yosemite isn't an option, consider HWY 50 E. and connect to HWY 89 S. (below Lake Tahoe) through Luther Pass, Carson Pass and Monitor pass. HWY 89 S. connects to HWY 395 S. Take HWY 395 S. on down to Mammoth Lakes. This is another beautiful drive through mountain passes and great cycling roads!
FROM LAS VEGAS: Take HWY 95 N. to HWY 266 W. at Lida Junction (there's nothing there except a few old, condemned buildings). Take HWY 266 W. to HWY 168 W. (bear to the left and don't miss this turn). HWY 168 W. will take you to Big Pine, CA. At Big Pine, head north on HWY 395 to Mammoth Lakes. This is the fastest route to Mammoth from Las Vegas. The stretch on HWY's 266 and 168 are desolate, but beautiful and include some great, twisty up and down grades! Cyclists frequently ride HWY 168 from Big Pine to the east as it is one of the many challenging climbs in the area and a leg of the Everest Challenge (http://www.everestchallenge.com/) so be careful if you are feeling like Mario Andretti on Westgard Pass!
If I Am Riding the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride, What is there for My Family or Friends to do While I Am Riding?
Okay, so you are coming to do the High Sierra Fall Century Bike Ride, but you're wondering what your family or friends can do while you're out riding your bike for the day? Mammoth Lakes, June Lake and the entire Mono County area are literally an outdoor wonderland. The opportunities are endless, but here are just a few ideas:
1. Swim in or paddle board on a Mountain Lake - you can drive or hike to any number of them!
2. Check out the Mono Lake Visitor's Center and the interesting Tufa Formations and the amazing NASA discovery found at Mono Lake http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/02dec_monolake/ and http://www.monolake.org/mlc/science
3. Take a day trip to the Ahwahnee Hotel in heart of Yosemite National Park for lunch, or a hike or any number of awe-inspiring adventures! http://www.yosemitepark.com/the-ahwahnee.aspx
4. Take a Gondola Ride to the top of Mammoth Mountain Ski Area - the views are amazing! Or, turn the kids loose on the climbing rock or let them rent a mountain bike and descend on the hundreds of Mammoth Mountain mountain bike trails. Check out Mammoth Mountain's summer activities here: http://www.mammothmountain.com/
5. Rent a paddle board, mountain bike or road bike at Footloose Sports in Mammoth Lakes and go have an adventure!: http://www.footloosesports.com/
6. Check-out http://www.visitmammoth.com/ or http://www.monocounty.org/ for even more ideas for things to do in this amazing place!