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  1. #1
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    Sea Otter XC race course track and info

    I don't normally announce new rides added to my website by posting on this forum, but I thought this one might be particularly handy for riders planning to participate in the upcoming Sea Otter races and, because it might not be noticed by many who could benefit from it unless I post a notice here and since there's little time left before the race in which to do any training or recon ride there, I thought I'd make this one more visible by posting this thread. This is the course of Cat 2 XC race for this year's Sea Otter Classic. (Cat 1 repeats the same course twice.) The GPS track is available here, as well as a written description and a zillion photos allowing familiarization with all parts of the course for those who are new to it.

    Fort Ord (2012 Sea Otter course)
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  2. #2
    more skier than biker
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    Thanks! that's a lot of info.

    Just a very minor observation, one thing about the actual race that differs from your GPS track are that the races start on the track and kind of make approximately a half-a-lap of the paved racetrack before veering off onto the dirt. (but obviously you wouldn't have been able to just hop on the track and take a cruise around )

  3. #3
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    Nice Job!

    Was just thinking about heading down next Sunday to pre ride and this is great help!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tyrone Shoelaces View Post
    Just a very minor observation, one thing about the actual race that differs from your GPS track are that the races start on the track and kind of make approximately a half-a-lap of the paved racetrack before veering off onto the dirt. (but obviously you wouldn't have been able to just hop on the track and take a cruise around )
    You're right. After all, this is just the track of a ride that happens to follow a race course for the greater part, rather than being meant to reflect the race course precisely from the start line to the finish line...
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  5. #5
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    Amazing info. I recognize all those pics but usually sweating profusely and hanging on for dear life by the time the these spots look familiar. Nice work and lots of us appreciate it.

    paul
    They never made the "Slowster"

  6. #6
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    You forgot to mention that rock after the first couple corners on trail 49. It jumped out of the right side of the trail and attacked the right side of my handle bar.

    I rode up 49 last weekend and was tempted to see if I could dislodge the rock but I was not carrying a large enough hammer.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoBalance View Post
    You forgot to mention that rock after the first couple corners on trail 49. It jumped out of the right side of the trail and attacked the right side of my handle bar.

    I rode up 49 last weekend and was tempted to see if I could dislodge the rock but I was not carrying a large enough hammer.
    Ha! Funny you should mention that. While doing the ride, my riding buddy (who'll actually be racing Sea Otter this year) remembered a racer in earlier years mentioning a rock around there that "attacked his arm" and we wondered if that rock might have been it. It probably was, then.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pmarshall View Post
    Nice work and lots of us appreciate it.
    I'm very glad to hear that it helps.
    Last edited by erginguney; 04-08-2012 at 10:21 PM. Reason: Silly typo.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  9. #9
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    Hey Erginguney,

    Good info. Thansk.

    Do you know if Cat 3 route is the same only minus the 3 sisters section?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Biker View Post
    Do you know if Cat 3 route is the same only minus the 3 sisters section?
    Yes, it appears that way.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  11. #11
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    I'm thinking of riding down to Fort Ord tomorrow to ride the ride w/o all the people...Everything's open and stuff right, I'm not going to find everything closed because of sea otter prep or any other such craziness? I'd hate to drive down for nothing.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neela View Post
    I'm thinking of riding down to Fort Ord tomorrow to ride the ride w/o all the people...Everything's open and stuff right, I'm not going to find everything closed because of sea otter prep or any other such craziness? I'd hate to drive down for nothing.
    All I can guarantee is that everything was open as of Saturday. My subjective expectation is that things wouldn't begin to be cordoned off until the last week before the first event date. I hope someone else with more first-hand information can confirm that for you.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  13. #13
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    As of this morning, everything was still open. I've been riding the Gran Fondo course as much as possible in preparation for the SOC. Sandstone Ridge has some serious rutting on the eastern side that could cause some issues on race day.

  14. #14
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    Yes, Sandstone ridge was pretty badly rutted out last year too, and someone was helping riders to navigate around a steep rutty section quite nicely.

    All areas should be open until at least next Thursday so go ride! Just don't expect to get into the race track is all!

    There will be some additional rain this week, it appears, so new ruts may show up down the road. I am going to probably do a minor pre-ride sometime next week to see where all the bad stuff is. Maybe early Friday morning.

    It would be nice if they used the revised trail 42 and bypass three sisters/b*tches. Oh well.

    By the way, Gran Fondo is same course as Cat2.

  15. #15
    That slow guy you passed
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    I haven't ridden 42 yet. I really like "Ewok" (43) but the immediate left onto 3 Sisters from the end of it is a b*tch! Loose stone and a 25% grade... I see hike-a-bike in my future.

  16. #16
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    Thanks! Reminded me of a few places I want to pre-ride, like the rutter descent and beach dowhill

    I think I'm going to pre-ride on Saturday (4/21), just cruise the whole course if anyone wants to join. Woohoo 7:40am start time on Sunday!
    Berkeley Bicycle Club (BBC) - http://berkeleybike.org

  17. #17
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    Thanks, great write up! It was really windy out there yesterday. Hoping to get a bunch of more rides in before SO.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by iRoNeTiK View Post
    I think I'm going to pre-ride on Saturday (4/21), just cruise the whole course if anyone wants to join.
    You do realize that Sea Otter starts on 4/19, right? I don't think you can expect the trails to be open for just anyone to ride a day before the actual XC races (on 4/22). Did you mean to write next Saturday (4/14) perhaps?
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  19. #19
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    great info! i will try to come

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by erginguney View Post
    You do realize that Sea Otter starts on 4/19, right? I don't think you can expect the trails to be open for just anyone to ride a day before the actual XC races (on 4/22). Did you mean to write next Saturday (4/14) perhaps?
    No, I meant the 21st. I pre-rode it then last year as well. Although this year it looks like the Pro's will be doing the same course as Cat 1/2 so might cause an issue. Their race is at 12pm on Saturday. I was hoping to go in the AM, like 8-9am, if not, then after their race in the afternoon.

    From Sea Otter's website -

    Pre-ride/inspection times are as follows:

    CAT 2 (intemediate) and CAT 3 (beginner) Category Saturday, 8 a.m. 6 p.m. (Some sections will be closed due to the UCI Pro XC races.)

    This seems like info from last year. I would think ALL sections would be closed starting at 12pm - ??pm since they are using the whole course, not just sections like in the past.

    I'll have to inquiry to confirm
    Berkeley Bicycle Club (BBC) - http://berkeleybike.org

  21. #21
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    Ah! Thanks for the clarification. I wasn't thinking in terms of an "official" pre-ride.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  22. #22
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    Yeah dont worry, they wont bother trying to stop anyone from riding.

    I typically just come in from creekside entrance and get on the course but to get to sandstone ridge, best to park at 8th and gigling, hit the ridge and come back up 50. Dont' know if I want to do any riding on Saturday but maybe ... try to get a rest day in before the race but who knows, maybe a casual ride will be OK.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by iRoNeTiK View Post
    This seems like info from last year.
    By the way, "info from last year" seems to be running theme across the Sea Otter Classic website. I've seen course stats that are out of date, turn-by-turn instructions that omit major sections, etc. The updates made to that website always seem to be incomplete in one way or another, making the information self-conflicting in many cases. No one should take the information on that site at face value. Any details that are crucial should always be double-checked.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by scfreak View Post
    Nice Job!

    Was just thinking about heading down next Sunday to pre ride and this is great help!
    Is this course open for the pre-ride? It'd be awesome to check it out beforehand

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feeltheburn View Post
    Is this course open for the pre-ride? It'd be awesome to check it out beforehand
    You'll find a discussion of that a few posts above.
    Looking for local rides? You'll find plenty on my website: Bay Area Mountain Bike Rides.

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