Two ways to ride in Santa Cruz

I went out to Santa Cruz to check out the parcours for the race next weekend. Here’s the view from the bottom of the hill:
One way to ride in Santa Cruz

In any case, the climb itself isn’t rocket science – Flat at the base, gradually ramping into a mild climb, a short level section followed by a steeper (up to 8%, I think) section for about the same distance. Then it levels out again very briefly followed by a kicker at the top (maybe 11%). Strategy is only going to go so far, willingness to suffer will be the main factor!

Then after the fourth time up that damn hill, I decided that it was a real waste to do that course, when there was so much more just a couple miles away…
A better way to ride in Santa Cruz

I’m definitely glad I expanded my horizons and rode on Empire Grade, Smith Grade, Bonny Doon, Pine “Flat” Road, and Ice Cream Grade instead of just grinding on the course. After all, that’s all I’m going to be able to do this Sunday…

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