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Morgan Hill

The Morgan Hill Ride is actually the 60-mile route of the "Bicycling Spring Classic presented by Specialized" sponsored by Bicycling Magazine.This was the first time in the "modern age" (more than 25 years) that I had entered an organized bike ride and I had a good time.

Park: Bicycling Spring Classic 60-mile route
Distance: 61.36 mile
Ride Time: 3:39
Total Ascent: 2635 feet
Maps: GPS trace
Overall Rating: 7

 

The ride starts and ends at Specialized headquarters in Morgan Hill. There are 3 lengths: 25 mile, 60 mile and 90 mile. Since this was my first ride of this type, I chose the 60-mile route.

Parking and check-in were easy. I knew that they would have a RFID that attaches to the left chain stay for KOM times (like this was a big issue for me!) and had thought I should bring a pair of dikes to cut the extra zip tie length, but I forgot it. Fortunately, they had some clippers and took care of it for me.

The start was well organized and we got off on time and without incident. There were police blocking the major intersections on the way out so we didn't have to stop which was quite convenient. We were out of town and into the country pretty quickly, heading out the Chesbro Reservoir before turning up Willow Springs Road.  I guess this is where the 60 mile KOM was (there was a second one for the the 90 mile ride) since there was a fairly short climb with two boxes that I assume were the sensors. We continued on a bicycle path before going past Anderson Reservoir and the first rest station (I didn't need to stop) and then out past Harvey Bear.

We headed out New Road to Dryden and the up Leavesly Road. This section had some pretty good climbs on it before getting to Coyote Lake. We continued riding out to the Coe Hunting Hollow entrance where the second rest station was located. At this point it was nice to get off the bike for a bit. They had an assortment of bagels, orange slices, mandarin oranges (these hit the spot), water and other items. After a short break, I was back on the bike to climb up and over Canada Road. I made pretty good time on the steady but not too steep climb. The downhill was fast but I was a bit cautious since it was the first time I had been on it and didn't know what to expected. I was going about 32 mph when a guy flew past me and quickly disappeared!  Oh well.

Once we got down the Highway 152, the climbing was basically over. However, the hills were replace by wind. I was still making pretty good time but it seemed like lots of riding was against the wind.

The 60 mile course and the 90 mile course were identical until we got to Day Road and Santa Teresa where the 90 mile group had another rest stop before doing some more climbing. I was glad to just be in the final stretch and headed back at a good clip.

When the ride was over, there were food truck and cold beer waiting. As part of the entry package, we got 2 food tickets, one drink ticket and 2 beer tickets. I used one of the food tickets and the 2 beer tickets (of course!) and was plenty full. I also took a tour through the Specialized museum which had some interesting displays.

All in all, this was a pretty fun experience. I was glad that I didn't go farther today and that the climbing was not too bad. It might have been fun to do it with some other people, so I will have to try to round up some others for future rides of this type.

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