Sep 01

30 AUG, 01 SEPT 2008 Mt Rainier Hill Rides; Eatonville Cut-off to Paradise 73 miles approx 4000 ft elevation gain; Ranger Station to Sunrise 29 miles 3000 ft elevation gain

These were very cold rides, and definitely 8-10% grade or more for greater than 10 miles, but the beauty of the rides excel that of any other in the world, especially the ride to Sunrise. The first ride, to Paradise, was a fairly steady climb for 18 miles up to the park entrance, then a gradually increasing grade, soon holding steady at 8-10% grade for the remaining 18 miles up to Paradise. The scene was most dramatic, though on Sat 20AUG the mountain was mostly covered in clouds.

 

Two days later, I did the Sunrise climb with Jonathan and Jon Kamke. The 14 miles to the top took me 1 hr 45 minutes, Jon Kamke arriving about 5-10 minutes before me, and Jonathan about 1/2 hour later. There were only scant clouds over Rainier, and so it was absolutely spectacular. It had snowed the day before, and you could find snow on the ground.

On both rides, the coldest part of the ride was the descent, which was done at a fairly fast clip, making matters all the colder. These two rides will remain among my favorites, and will be useful for short training rides before longer events.

 

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