|SFR Point Reyes Lighthouse 200k|
The ride is organized by the SF Randonneurs and they have quite a few nice rides on their list. This is the first one I became obsessed with so far, it became my annual pilgrimage! I figured if I can do this then I can move on to try another ride. I wanted to dial in the route and get it right. It's actually easy to navigate. The bike routes 5 and 20 that get you there through Marin. I often get lost in Point Reyes, and have no GPS or phone reception, so a map is good to bring, available at the bike shops.
The first time I attempted this ride, I bonked before reaching the lighthouse. This was a mistake which cost me the entire ride and I vowed never to repeat it ever again. I used some notes from last time to pack properly, perhaps overcompensating on the electrolytes. I used a mix of real food, quick burning carbs and powdered drinks to power through it:
To Lighthouse (5 hours) : 2 packs honey stingers, 2 clif bars, 1 homemade baby burrito (beans, rice and queso fresco), 1 bottle Hammer Perpetuem, 1 speedfil and 1 bottle worth water (4 bike bottles of hydration, with bike bottle being 24 oz)
To Marshall (3 hours): 2 endurolytes, 1 baby burrito, 1 honey stingers, potato chips (salty snack) from Whale of a Deli at Pt. Reyes Stn., 1 bottle Hammer Perpetuem, refill speedfil (3 bike bottles of hydration)
Back to SF (5 hours): 1 clif bar, 1 baby burrito, 1 cup of dates and trail mix, bottle of SOS, (2 bike bottles equiv hydration refill)
Total - 13 hours, 126 miles: 3 packs honey stingers, 3 Clif bars, 3 baby burritos, 2 Hammer Perpetuems, 1 SOS, 2 endurolytes, 1 cup of dates and trail mix, 9 bike bottles worth of hydration and H20 (about 1.6 gallons!)
The day before, I was concious about pre-hydrating, and just kept drinking lots of water and some coconut water, which helped alot. I noticed that most of hydration was in the morning and tapered off in the afternoon. I use the Speedfil because my bike frame is small and fits better than 2 water cages, also, for me is safer. I keep a little bento box on top tube so I can eat comfortably and safely during the ride. I'm slow so can't afford the long meal stops. I tried to keep my stops few, far between, and short, around 5 - 10 minutes. My usual stops are Ferry Stop in Sausalito by the BofA (bathroom), Coffee Roastery in Fairfax (water, food, coffee, bathroom), Camp Taylor Picnic Area in Samuel P. Taylor Park (water, bathroom), Pt. Reyes Lighthouse parking lot (portolet and on ride day the volunteers have water), Pt. Reyes Station (food, water, bathroom at Toby's playground), Marshall Store (food, water, portolet)
A couple new things I want to do: Add more variety and flavors to the bars and maybe even the food. Instead of thick whole wheat tortilla, a thinner white flour tortilla would have been easier to get down while cycling LOL! The refrigerated water from the stops make the powdered drinks taste so much better! An insulated bottle would be good to have.
Bike check: Make sure everything works and bike fit comfortable. That was another lesson from a past PRL ride. I was glad I put some new tires on my bike, for peace of mind. I pumped them to 90 psi.
As far as the lights go, I must remember to fully charge the 200 lumens light before the ride and bring another one, because the long rides use up alot of juice. There are some roads through the forest that are dark during the daytime and lights are a necessity. Battery powered lights are good because you can easily replace the batteries on the go. Luckily Bicycle Works was still open and I could get a $10 flashlight from them which got me over Camino Alto towards SF in addition to my headlamp and another bike light I brought which was a bit too dim for total darkness. The problem with Camino Alto is the Corte Madera side is all nicely paved and freshly striped and highlighted going uphill. Then when you get to the Mill Valley side going downhill, you're completed screwed in the dark. The road is old and rough, the paint is so badly faded and breaking in some areas. You can't really see where you're going and have to slow down alot! Also, be careful of hitting deer and turkeys!
Done with technical notes. This is a scenic ride and great way to spend the day!