Woodfords Canyon

There is a big gap in picture taking here.

Pat and I reconnected at a lunch stop after descending Ebbits. We rested and ate, but had to be moving soon. I was having trouble eating. My stomach was shut down. I had some hot soup and apricots, and we shoved off. The next cutoff was Picketts Junction at 5:15. Ahead was a long valley with a lot of miles to be cranked through before we hit climbing again. I love this section of the ride, for if you work with others you can really motor.

Pat and I rode each other’s wheels and I pulled us up to a paceline where a woman was doing all the work at the front. Soon Pat gallantly took over, and then me, and in short order we were doing all the work. With all this going on no pictures were taken. But we made good time.

Here we are approaching the dreaded Woodfords Canyon. This is a climb that leads up to the approach to the final climb of the day: Carson Pass. At the top of Woodfords is Pickets Junction. Make it there before the cutoff and you pretty much have five passes in the bag.

A look to the side as we turn into Woodfords Canyon.

This is where it gets really tough. It’s not steep, or many miles, but often there is a head wind and one’s energy reserves are low. I told Pat I’d see him at the top for I was going to take it easy. I must admit that I bonked. My energy level dropped away and I attribute it to not eating enough during the day. My fatigue was a blood sugar thing.

How did I get up Woodfords? I got on the wheels of these two lovely women and stayed there. It was a slower pace than I would normally ride but I knew that if I kept my normal cadence I would be stopping to rest again and again. I got to the rest stop which is a quarter mile before the Picketts Junction cutoff about 25 minutes before the cutoff time. I put my bike down next to Pat’s, thought I acknowledged him, and made a beeline for tent with folded chairs in shade. Pat later told me he thought I was so out of it that I didn’t see him for I didn't respond to his calls. I was beat and didn't think I could go any further.

But you don't stop there. My energy came back after a rest. The climb to Carson was not that bad. This is last of it. Follow the road as it curves up to the left, around a corner and you’re at the pass.

The Pass! The Pass!

And a quarter mile past is the final rest stop. There is a party-like atmosphere here. It may not be the end, for one must ride back to Turtle Rock Park near Markleeville, but the rest is mostly downhill.

The final BikeCam™ shot. Note the rider arriving on the right is receiving the fifth sticker. Hooray!

Ride number

My number with the stickers. The girls on Ebbetts Pass gave me two stickers. Why? I don't know.