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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Unofficial Mt. Davis Challenge, part two

7.30 39m
Today I got to go back out to Mt. Doom Davis. It was unseasonably cool and a great day for climbing.My friend RC came out from Pittsburgh and we set out around 1130. The route ended up looking like this, with the outbound (climbing) segment in red and the second (generally downhill) leg in green.

There is an unnecessary bit on the outbound leg where we missed a turn and had to backtrack. It took 3.5 hours to get up to the top, and 1.0 hour to get back down. We didn't do anything unusual, but the top speed on the computer was 41.1 mph when we were finished. Glorious descents.

Amazingly, people race up this thing in the Mt. Davis Challenge, in a much grander way.

The roads were not busy and the drivers were all very courteous. Twice the surface changed from pavement to dirt-gravel and then back again. Very pretty country, tremendous views. It was a cool day, but we were pretty warmed up.

There's a marker, an observation tower, and a few explanatory panels at the peak of Mt. Davis but otherwise there's nothing in the way of restrooms or water. When we started down, we stopped at the nearby YMCA camp to fill our water bottles (and to put our jackets on, the descents were bracing).

On the way down we decided to eschew the gravel-dirt roads and improvised a paved route, which worked pretty well. The descent still had climbs in it, this is not a rail-trail engineered with a focus on redundant grade.

A tremendous ride, challenging and rewarding. I'm glad I had good company for it.

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