Cycling, Edmonton | 4 comments
By: Gordon Sustrik
Few days ago I asked our EMCC vice president Gordon Sustrik if he would consider writing something about the spring training camp for my web blog and he happily agreed to the idea. The following are his daily reports from Penticton (BC).
The 2009 Penticton training camp is scheduled for the week of Sunday April 19th to Saturday April 25th inclusive. Please note that for insurance purposes only paid-up members of EMCC are eligible to participate. The new EMCC Code of Conduct for club rides will apply to the training camp. This means that we are looking at having four separate groups of not more than 12 riders per group. The first group (long and fast, i.e.: 25 km/h average) will leave at 9:00 am, subsequent groups (long and not so fast, shorter and fast, shorter and not so fast) at 5 minute intervals, subject to weather conditions. Select a distance and speed that meets your ability and ambition. Click for a Detailed Ride Guide.
Once again we will be based at the Tiki Shores resort, 914 Lakeshore Drive, Penticton, BC, V2A 1C1, and have been able to get the special weekly rates shown below. To make your reservations please call them toll-free at 1-866-492-8769, and be sure to mention Edmonton Masters.
The EMCC spring training camp officially starts tomorrow, but a few riders arrived early and many more have arrived through the day. As a result there have been quite a few small groups head out for a pre-camp shake down ride.
Just arrived, Saturday
Writing from Penticton: Gordon Sustrik
Rod, Paul and I hooked up with the local Java Junkies for good ride this morning. Some real hills, including The Wall, made for a challenging ride (at least for me). The Java Junkies are a friendly and welcoming group. A couple of their riders may join us later in the week.
Don and Donna were intending to head up Green Mountain Road this morning. Hope to find out how that went later this evening or tomorrow.
The “hounds”, including Tom, Al, Mike and Bruce, were also out today. And Ed and Brian arrived in time to get an afternoon ride in.
Looks like a very good turnout for the camp. And the weather forecast looks promising. Although it was a bit cool this morning (+3), warmer weather is predicted, and the only rain forecast at this time is on Wednesday, our recovery ride.
Tomorrow is the first ride, and Peter has scheduled a long one – 125 km for the A ride. He says it is mostly flat. I will report on the accuracy of that tomorrow.
In 2006 in our free time (between rides) we paid visit to one of many vineries in the area .
Day 1, Sunday
Day one of the Penticton Spring Training Camp dawned with a mix of sun and clouds. At 7C, the temperature was a bit warmer than we expected, but still cool. First ride planned was long and (relatively) flat. One group set off to cover approximately 80 km and two groups set off to do the longer, 125 km ride. The long and fast group had a lot of youngsters in it (under 50): Rod, Paul, Curtis, Shane and Anna, Rob and Pat …
The long but sensible group included Ed, Jim, Michael, John, Joy, Mitch, Shane, Daniel, myself (hence sensible).
The ride was to Osoyoos and back. Ed suffered a flat before we got out of town. Daniel was off the front and missed a turn. He could not hear us calling his name, nor could he be chased down (not sure if he has returned yet, maybe he is still riding south and wondering where we are!). A light head wind picked up along the way, giving a nice tailwind for part of the way back. But to keep us honest, the wind shifted and we had a decent headwind for the last part of the return. The weather got nicer as we rode south, but then poorer as we returned north. But no rain. A good ride. Nothing eventful, meaning a good start to the Camp.
Day 2, Monday
Day two of the Penticton Spring Training Camp dawned cloudy, but a bit warmer. Ride two was long and hilly. The three groups remained largely the same as Sunday, but two of the local riders that Rod, Paul and I rode with on Saturday joined the long and fast group. Weather turned out to be pretty good for riding – calm winds and comfortable temperatures. The longer rides conquered McLean Creek, The Wall, Secrest Hill and Green Mountain. There were a few tired bodies when we returned.
Rod and Shane have been using ice baths to help their legs recover. They walk out into the Lake after the ride. The rest of use shake our heads when we hear them cream like little girls.
Day 3, Tuesday
Day three was a shorter route, along the Naramata Bench, with 4 steep climbs. Once again the groups remained largely the same. A couple of flat tires were the most interesting events. Our group spotted Dave Embury walking down one hill with his bike on his shoulder, having suffered two flats. We hear that he was saved by a local in a truck who gave him a ride. Michael started a lesson in descending taught by Shane, but promptly suffered a front flat. Fortunately no harm done – Michael stayed with the rubber side down. But he did indicate that he would add descending lessons from Shane to his list of things not to do in the future.
Tonight is the group dinner – close to 30 will be in attendance at Salty’s, just down the block. Should be a good time and maybe there will be better stories tomorrow. Jim was the official photographer today. I will see if I can get some pictures from him, or get him to send you some.
Day three ended with a group dinner at Salty’s. There were almost 30 people attending. Much fun was had by all. Good food, good beer and wine and good company.
Day 4, Wednesday
Day 4 was the scheduled recovery day. Weather was a bit cooler with a strong north wind. As a result, many people scattered to different activities. I helped Ed ferry his truck to Osoyoos so that he and Mary could enjoy a tail wind ride. A few small groups did an easy ride on the Naramata Bench. Those that did the scheduled ride north to Trout Lake spent and our riding into the wind and ½ an hour returning.
Day 5 was “The Big Ba(l)d One”. The long ride of 155 km, including Green Mountain Road, Mount Baldy and couple of small hills meant we would have a long hard day. The weather was cool – starting at 4C and never getting above 11C. And the north wind continued to blow at about 30 kph. Once again two groups started out on the long ride, but there were some changes in composition. The first climb up Green Mountain Road was kept to a reasonable pace in our group. The descent resulted in a few very cold cyclists. Then back up again to Twin Lakes, White Lake and into Oliver. We stopped briefly in Oliver and connected with the first group. A few from each group decided that they did not want to tackle Mount Baldy, so set off for home. The remaining riders from the two groups became one group of 12 and started the attack on Baldy. I am afraid that I cannot provide a blow-by-blow description of the attacks and counterattacks on the climb, as I was soon too far back to witness much. Eleven riders made it o the end of the pavement (yours truly turned around when the first of the descenders appeared. Then another cold descent, with the wind sometimes gusting so hard we had to pedal going downhill. Another brief stop at a café in Oliver and then a tough grind home into the wind. It was a long, hard day.
The number of riders will begin to dwindle now. Jim, Mike and Daniel are returning home on Friday. Shane and Karen may head home, as Shane is now ill.
Day 6, and for some (myself included) the last day. We were down to two groups of about a dozen each. Headed north to Summerland, then up the valley to the Boyle camp. The nicest day so for – started about 4C and sunny. A moderate SW wind (so a tail wind out). Temperature climbed to about 14 C and a few puffy clouds are now in the sky. On the way back from Boyle was the climb up Giant’s Head, which some of us treated as optional.
Two of the local riders once again joined us and have invited people to join their regular group ride Saturday morning.
It has once again been a great camp. Peter Heppleston is to be commended for designing a very good schedule. We missed your guiding presence, Peter, but we stuck to the schedule and will be the stronger for it.
Thank you Gord for this report from Penticton EMCC 2009 training camp.
Until next year…