The L.A. Tourist Race just finished it’s third year that past weekend and it was BRUTAL. Every year Mike from Let’s Ride Cyclery put’s on a series of three races usually in the first quarter or so of the year aside from 2020 when the 3rd one got pushed and everyone raced in a set couple of weeks instead of the same day. I have no idea why the hell he pick some of the checkpoints but then again I have no idea why the hell I do some of them.
Five days prior to the race you’re given a set of coordinates and it is up to you to route your way around to them and tear a page out of a book that has been hidden, the page number corresponding to your race number. Personally I love routing and spend a lot of time doing it, researching, zooming in, asking around etc…..if you just put in a set of numbers and expect your mapping application to know that a trail is fully rideable your cooked. It happens every race too, a lot of DNF’s happen because people blindly trust their computer. USGS TOPO maps help a ton but people don’t generally know how to use them. Luckily for me I used to work at a mapping company doing aerial photography. Unluckily though shit still happens when you don’t know the area and this race we (and I think everyone else?) had to hike in/out for 3 or so miles just to get our page out of the book.
Scuba and I decided to head straight for the 2 thinking it would have been too hot in the afternoon. After reaching Red Box we went for the hiking page..it wasn’t a leisurely walk either…..it was big rocks, small rocks, rock gardens and annoying plants that scratched and poked you.
After that one to be honest we were kind of stoked thinking we got the worst one done. That may have been the case but each checkpoint was some form of torture. We had lunch at RedBox then went towards Mt. Disappointment underestimating the grade and elevation gained. It’s in theory not that bad I guess, something like 2.5 miles and 1200ft, but our legs we’re already a bit toast, and my rear derailleur wouldn’t shift into the 42t all day and I was too damn dumb to take the time to adjust it.
After Mt. Disappointment it was a real fun bomb back down to the 2, then the 14 or whatever miles down the 2…again super fun except of sometimes the cars are a bit ago.
The next two checkpoints were in a some sort of a wash and was dirt and sand for most all of it. I have 2.1″ Thunderburts on my Romeo and was able to pedal through 99.9% of it all but that did take a lot out of me. I heard after that a lot of people just walked, and some went back out to the road then around to the next point. I like my way though. We even got to cross a little bit of water at the end of it.
Getting to the last checkpoint fully, 100% sucked.It was off Stough in the Verdugos which is a really fun way to come down but not in the least fun to climb. Another brutal 2.5ish 1400ft climb to end the climbing for the day. Still no 42t in the rear nothing you can do but suffer up it. The only thing to keep you stoked at that point is knowing that you have a super fun, fast, paved downhill and then pretty much down/flat back to the sop for the finish.
Overall it was a shitty but fun day of suffering with my friend. We got to ride all day without having any mechanical issues, flats, or pain (minus Scuba cramping blocks away from the shop) and we finished with some time to spare. Not that it matters because I still have no idea wtf I’m doing with video (shooting or editing) but the gopro was messing up alllllllll day long. So aggravating, I almost chucked it off the mountain several times but yeah, I’m missing a lot of what we did but this edit is already 8 minutes long and thats about 7 minutes too long.