2003 > December 13 > WSDC > Route and Other Information
2003 Winter Solstice Double
(and Century) Information
Everything You Need to Know to Become an Official Lunatic
Double Century Start Location and Time
Double Century Start Directions
Directions to the start are from I-280.The Saratoga Ave exit is south of where 280 intersects Hwy 85 and north of where it intersects Hwy 87:
This is several miles farther south than the start used through 2001 for those coming from the North.
Please try to be quiet and not disturb his neighbors. Once you've got your bike ready you are welcome to come into the house and use the bathroom - you can park your bikes against the house, or on the lawn.
Century Start Location Directions
The century start location is the same as last year. The start will be at Christmas Hill Park in Gilroy. Assuming that everyone will be arriving from the north, these are the directions to the park:
To help cover the cost of rest stop food and gas, we are asking people doing the double for $10 and for those doing the single for $5. It helps keep it from being to much of a money looser.
The food is purchased based on the number of people who RSVP in the week prior to the ride. If you RSVP that you are coming, I'll be buying food for you.
We've made some changes to the route so if you've done the ride before, don't assume that you know the route. When last checked a few weeks ago there was some road construction along Hwy 25 between Gilroy and Hollister that might cause us to put in a detour that will add a couple more miles. We'll check on the road the week prior to this ride and decide the route then.
I have attached a copy of the route to the bottom of this. The double will have a mass start. For the first 3 or 4 miles, please stay together and don't run into anyone. We will make several turns so if you aren't sure where to go, stay at the back and follow those who know the route. Once we get on Quito, everyone is on their own and can go whatever speed they want. i.e. feel free to drop me. The first 10 miles of the route out in the morning is the reverse of the route home in the afternoon. The route heads over Kennedy to the Almaden area, and out past the reservoirs to Gilroy. We bypass downtown Gilroy.
The first (and third) rest stop is at a park on the south side of Gilroy. It's the location of the Gilroy Garlic Festival. It's the start/finish of the century and is the first and third rest stop for the double century riders. After leaving Gilroy, we will bypass most of Hollister by using a route that goes east of town. This will avoid both Hwy 25 and 156. The route along Santa Ana Valley Rd and Qien Sabe has some gentle climbs and a final descent that gets us back onto Hwy 25 at Paicines. We take Hwy 25 to Hwy 146 where we go 2 miles to the Pinnacles campground store. This is the turnaround point. The route back to Gilroy uses Old Airline and Cienega Roads for part of the way. After returning to Gilroy, the double riders continue using a slightly different route through the reservoirs.
The century is about 108 miles but the double measures somewherearound 197 miles - depending on who's bike computer you want to believe.
Century riders should not need lights. If they need them they will be riding much too slow and will need to be sagged in so that the support people can get back north.
Double riders will need lights. The first 30 miles of the ride will be in the dark, and you'll likely need them again in the evening. Make sure you have tail lights. Everyone involved is an adult and can choose what level of lighting they are comfortable with, but I consider a single 2-3 watt light to be quite inadequate for use in the urban areas around the start and finish.
If you plan to use something like a Cateye Micro, I think you should attach two to your bike for use in the more urban areas so that oncoming traffic can see you. The same is true for people using something like a Schmidt generator hub (these are about 3 watts), maybe more so as they will lose most, if not all of their forward lighting when they stop. They will need some sort of battery powered light anyway in case they have to fix a flat tire or have some sort of mechanical issue.
You will be able to drop your lights off at the Gilroy rest stop and pick them up when you return, so there is no need to haul the things the whole way. Unless you want to.
Reflective clothing, leg bands, etc., is also strongly recomended.
Support and Rest Stops
Compared to a typical century, this ride is very lightly supported. The rest stops are about 50 miles apart. There are some very long stretches without stores or gas stations. We will probably have one or two SAG vehicles on the route, but with riders spread out over 50 miles by the finish, if you need a SAG vehicle, it can take quite a while for one to show up, so you need to be pretty self sufficient.
We will have Gatorade, water, fruit, cookies, pretzels, and other snacks at the rest stops. Lunch will also include sandwich fixings. There are stores at or near the rest stops, so if you want something else...
Because of the time of year, water is not as big a problem as it would be in July, but many people will find bringing a Camelback to be useful.
The Ride - Am I Ready? How Long Will it Take? etc.
The century is pretty simple. No big hills, nothing steep. Assuming an 8:00 A.M. start, you have 8 hours to ride the 108 miles and be done by our recomended 4:00 P.M. finishing time. The only issue is that there has often been a fairly strong headwind on the way north back to Gilroy. The Cienega Road loop shields the route from some of the winds, but at the price of a bit more climbing.
The double is a bit more challenging for several reasons. Riding in the dark is slower. There are a few short but steep stretches. There is more urban riding at the beginning and end. While there won't be much traffic in the morning, there can be traffic in the evening. We normally have had headwinds on the second half of the ride. This is not the easiest double around; it isn't by any means the hardest either.
There is no obligation to wait or regroup. If you want to ride with someone, and you can keep up with them, that is okay, but they don't have to wait for you, nor you for them. We tend to get pretty spread out with the first finishers as much as 3 hours ahead of the last finishers.
This is also not intended to be done as a "race". We don't keep results. If you finish the double prior to the earlier of when Ken Holloway finishes or 5:00 P.M. when Lorna will return to the finish, you won't be able to get in the house. With Ken as the host, it would be bad form to drop him anyway - but it's okay if he suffers a bit. :-)
We've found in the past that people take about two hours longer to do the Winter Solstice Double than they take to do the Davis Double. Why - there's a bit more urban riding, there are less people to draft, there is often a headwind home, there is at least a couple hours of riding in the dark, and most people aren't exactly in mid-season shape right now. It's kind of bad form to be in good shape this time of year anyway.
Last-minute Decisions (Weather, etc.)
If the weather predictions for Saturday the 13th are real bad, we will reschedule the ride for Sunday the 14th or maybe even delay it until after the first of the year. I will consult the weather predictions available in the media and then (I'm no meteorologist) take my best guess of what to do. I will make the decision on Thursday the 11th and will distribute it via e-mail. Call me at work on Friday the 12th at 408-975-6842 if you aren't sure or have questions about what the plan is.
A little bit of drizzle or even a little rain won't stop the ride. For some of us a lot of rain won't stop the ride, but not everyone is that stupid.
Riders should come prepared to deal with rain and cold. We will not have anywhere near enough capacity to SAG everyone to the finish or probably even to the next rest stop, so you need to be ready to ride 50 or more miles while wet and/or cold. You need to have your bike in good mechanical order. The only rest stop that will have much SAG capacity is on the way back at Gilroy. This is the finish point for the century riders and they may be able to help carry DNFing double riders back to San Jose.
Route Sheets, Checkin, etc.
We will have full route sheets for the entire ride. Please take one and stay on the route. If you get off the route, we will have trouble finding you. There will be no markings on the road.
We will take down everyone's name when they start and then will time them into and out of every rest stop. If you are going to stop, or turnaround at some point, make very sure that this is reported to the people running the rest stops. Make sure that they do get your name when you get to rest stops and when you finish. We don't want to loose anyone and we don't want to be looking for anyone who has gone off to do their own thing.
For double riders, we'd like to make sure that our volunteers can get back to the finish in time to join in the potluck. Recomended times to LEAVE each rest stop (you'll have to get there earlier if you want to sit around) are 8:30 A.M. for Gilroy outbound, 12:30 P.M. for the Pinnacles, 4:30 P.M. for Gilroy inbound, with a goal of having everyone finished by 8:00 P.M. You don't have to ride very fast to do this, but you need to keep moving. Much of the difference in "speed" between the faster and slower riders is really the time spent stopped along the way.
We have a potluck dinner at Ken's place after the ride. I normally provide beer, soft drinks, and wine. We will have pasta also. The double riders should bring their dishes with them at the start and we'll find some refrigerator space for everything. We'll also provide showers to the double riders. But please bring a towel.
Please re-confirm your attendance, preferably by e-mail, on December 8th or 9th to me at email@example.com. You may have told me already, but reconfirm so that I'm sure who to expect. Tell me which ride you are planning to do. I will be shopping for rest stop food on Wednesday or Thursday (and beer also) and need to have a reasonable head count by then.
My wife, Lorna Toyota, will be running the Gilroy rest stop. She will have a 3 year old boy, James, with her, so you may have to wait or take care of things yourself while certain details are dealt with. The whining, crying, and other noises will be free. Those who have done the ride before know what to expect.
Volunteers are always appreciated. Thomas Maslen has already said he could help and I need a few more.
Winter Solstice Double Start: 3965 Olga Drive, San Jose, CA 0.00 L Olga 0.03 0.03 R Hibiscus 0.18 0.21 L Williams 0.32 0.53 R Boynton 0.52 1.05 R Payne 0.59 1.64 L San Tomas Aquino/Fenian/Harriet 1.72 3.36 R McCoy 0.97 4.33 L Quito 2.62 6.95 L Saratoga/LosGatos 1.88 8.83 L Los Gatos Blvd 0.21 9.04 R Kennedy 3.18 12.22 R Shannon 0.70 12.92 L Hicks 0.91 13.83 R Camden 2.52 16.35 R Almaden Expwy 2.46 18.81 R Harry 0.09 18.90 L McKean 6.60 25.50 S becomes Uvas 1.92 27.42 L Oak Glen 2.92 30.34 R stay on Oak Glen 2.51 32.85 R Sycamore (steep but short) 2.05 34.90 R Watsonville Rd. 1.74 36.64 L Day Road 3.39 40.03 R Santa Teresa (watch construction) 3.69 43.72 L Miller (pot holes on the descent) 0.74 44.46 R Christmas Tree Park Rest Stop Start Century 0.00 44.46 R Miller 0.11 44.57 R Uvas Parkway (just past levee) 0.33 44.90 S Becomes 10th 0.39 45.29 R Princeville 0.53 45.82 L Thomas/Luchessa 0.44 46.26 R Monterey 0.42 46.68 S Underneath Hwy 101 0.83 47.51 S Becomes Bolsa Rd. 1.64 49.15 L Bloomfield 1.58 50.73 R Frazier Lake 4.00 54.73 L Shore 2.61 57.34 S Fairview 6.81 64.15 L Santa Ana Valley 7.44 71.59 R Qien Sabe 3.39 74.98 L Hwy 25 22.24 97.22 R Pinnacles turnoff 2.02 99.24 U rest stop at Pinnacles store 2.02 101.26 L Hwy 25 12.83 114.09 L Old Airline Rd. 2.13 116.22 L Cienega Rd. 15.15 131.37 L stay on Cienega 1.22 132.59 L Union Rd, 3.60 136.19 R Hwy 156 4.18 140.37 L Hwy 25 watch RR crossings 6.56 146.93 R Bolsa Rd. 2.83 149.76 S becomes Monterey 1.25 151.01 L Luchessa 0.44 151.45 R Princeville 0.53 151.98 L 10th/Uvas Parkway 0.72 152.70 L Miller 0.11 152.81 L Christmas Tree Park Rest Stop End Century 0.00 152.81 L Miller 0.74 153.55 R Santa Teresa 2.01 155.56 L Hwy 152/Hecker Pass Rd 1.51 157.07 R Burchell Rd 2.55 159.62 R Watsonville Rd. 2.18 161.80 L Uvas Rd 9.76 171.56 S becomes McKean 6.60 178.16 R Harry 0.09 178.25 L Almaden Expwy 2.46 180.71 L Camden 2.52 183.23 L Hicks 0.91 184.14 R Shannon 2.58 186.72 veer L to stay on Shannon 0.79 187.51 L Los Gatos Blvd. 0.61 188.12 R Los Gatos/Saratoga 1.88 190.00 R Quito 2.62 192.62 R McCoy 0.97 193.59 L Harriet/Fenian/San Tomas Aquino 1.72 195.31 R Payne 0.59 195.90 L Boynton 0.52 196.42 L Williams 0.32 196.74 R Hibiscus 0.18 196.92 L Olga 0.03 196.95 R finish