Stagecoach century, January 2006

Last week Igor sent an email to ask if anybody was going to the Stagecoach century. He had registered but was not going to be able to go, so he was asking if somebody could pick up his jersey. No way that I was trained to do 100 miles, and I had no idea what this ride was about. But I was not going to let Igor's money go wasted, so I decided to go in his name. In fact, the ride was a 100 miles out and back in the Anza Borrego desert, near the Mexican border.

I drove on friday and set my tent near the end of the small town of Ocotillo. I figured I was unlikely to get disturbed while camping in the desert, plus the night was warm. The ride was nice, quite flat with a couple steep hills. Plenty of riders seemed to be beginners, asking each other 'are you going to make it', some walking up the hills as soon as it was steeper than 5%. We had lots of headwind on the way out, lots of tailwind on the way back. It was the first time I had chili for lunch, but I liked it more than a cold sandwich. I had 3 servings, which of course made me fart non-stop on the way back.

100 miles in the Anza Borrego desert near Mexico
My tent in the sand. Friday night was pretty warm
At the start. Wells Fargo sponsors this ride
Plenty of cyclists. 1200 people registered for the ride!
First rest stop after ~13 miles
Today's landscape - cactii, bushes and sand
Second rest stop in the middle of nowhere
One of the few nice and fast downhills
A 2005 Merlin X-light !! I'm looking for one !!
Chili for lunch - non-stop farting guaranteed
I'm in the Anza Borrego desert
Large cactii - better not touch
An air strip
Cholla cactii. These hurt a lot.
A nice solution for travelling
Back to Ocotillo after 100 miles
I stopped a lot and am not really tired.
I stocked up on free Hammer gel !
On the way back, big rocks along I-8
This landscape looks a bit...
... like what you see in Joshua Tree National Park