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  1. #1
    Just another FOCer
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    ... and if we just ... PushaKona 2 fun in SoCal recap

    Cleveland National Forest, CA. On Saturday, 16 of us embarked on Darin's second annual PushaKona ride:



    Brandi, Frank, Tani, Eric, Mark, Fergus, Pablo, Joel, Jeff, Mark, Darin "Crash" Maxwell, Franky, Serge, Pat, Bill and I:

    Photo by "Crash" Maxwell

    The spirit of the ride is for riders to bring their heavy bike out for a grueling ride through the Santa Ana's.

    This year's route would start and end at Cook's Corner:

    - Up and over Modjeska Grade to the bird sanctuary.
    - Up the Harding Truck Trail.
    - Across Modjeska and Santiago Peaks via the Main Divide.
    - Down the Main Divide to Upper Holy Jim.
    - Down Upper Holy Jim to a waiting water resupply.
    - Back up the Main Divide to just short of Santiago Peak.
    - Take the short singletrack around Santiago Peak to the saddle.
    - Down Joplin.
    - Down the Santiago Truck Trail.
    - Down The Luge.
    - Down to Cook's Corner.

    Total mileage = 32.2 miles
    My ride time = 6:22
    Rest time = 4:10
    Average moving speed = 5.1 mph

    On to the pictures.

    Making our way up the Modjeska Grade:


    Regrouping at the bird sanctuary parking lot:


    Starting up Harding:


    A view of the morning light, looking towards the Santiago Truck Trail from Harding:


    A great deal of my ride up Harding was in the shade which was nice.

    Catalina Island was visible from Harding today:


    Mark blows by me as we near the top of Harding. He said he needed to stand up and climb, his privates were going numb. Saddle comfort is a challenge on these extended rides:


    We would regroup at 4 Corners where Harding, Maple Springs and the Main Divide all converge. I believe it took me 2:15 to make the climb up Harding.

    Here Frank works on aligning his rear brake:


    Waiting for the rest of the group to show. Some of the faster riders took a half hour break on Harding. Mark was the first of the long breakers to arrive:


    Eric (who must be from the equator) stays warm while waiting at 4 corners:


    Brandi shows off his Kona style while Joel...:


    Once regrouped we made our way up the Main Divide towards Modjeska Peak.

    Gotta love this section of trail:


    Darin grinds away:


    Taking a short break at Modjeska Peak with Santiago Peak in the background:


    From here Serge's lungs decided that enough was enough. He would wait at Joplin while the rest of us continued on to Santiago Peak.

    Here Joel and Pat make their way up the Main Divide:


    Looking down on the Main Divide as it snakes its way across the mountains:


    It was good to make it to Santiago Peak and still feel good. (Lots of climbing to get to that point.) Here Tani breaks out a Fat Tire Ale:


    Brandi and Joel survey the view:


    Tani shares the wealth and Pedro gladly accepts:


    At this point Pat and Franky also decided they had had enough. They headed back down to Joplin and out with Serge.

    The remaining 13 made our way down the Main Divide to Upper Holy Jim. The highlight of the descent was Darin coming to a stop at the first switchback and promptly falling over because he couldn't unclip in time. DOH!

    Here Eric arrives at the Upper Holy Jim trailhead:


    Mark aka Bloodhead smiles as more of the group arrives:


    Here comes Darin:


    The guys take a break in the shade as we wait for Frank to arrive. He had flatted on the way down:


    Time for some fun, Upper Holy Jim has some great views and is fun to ride. You just have to watch out for them switchbacks and a minor rut from time to time.

    Here is my favorite section of the trail:


























    The guys negotiate one of the switchbacks:


    A little further down the trail:


    Ok let's get rolling again. I believe when Brandi got started he went over the bars; his bike went up in the air and came down on top of him. It was comical to see and I'm glad he was ok:


    Near the bottom of Upper Holy Jim, the trail goes under the trees, becomes loose and has some tight switchbacks:


    The stump which took Joel down the last time we rode here:


    Darin comes though one of the looser sections of trail:


    Once safely at the bottom we resupplied with the water that Darin had stashed earlier in the week:


    Now it was time for the part I was dreading the most. The climb back up to Santiago Peak on the Main Divide. It was made a touch more difficult by a recent grading of the Main Divide. I must say Fergus hauls ass when walking his bike.

    Above Upper Holy Jim we encountered the most difficult part of our climb:


    Here Frank lives up to the event's name:


    Here comes Joel:




    The climb was tough, but not nearly as bad as I had envisioned before the ride. It took 1:15 to ride/push my 40 pound up to the regroup point.

    Here we regrouped just below the peak. (The first switchback on the Main Divide coming down from Santiago peak towards Holy Jim.)


    Pablo feeling guilty about being on a light racer hardtail actually climbed all the way up to the peak. He came back down after a couple of hikers told him of his error:


    Eric relaxes and stays warm. Eric rode the second heaviest bike and was consistently near the front. 39 pound bike, no problem:


    Darin arrives, a little worse for wear. The miles have caught up with him:


    Tani is feeling it too:


    Darin starts to feel better:


    We jumped on the singletrack that goes around Santiago Peak. A fun short trail.

    Now at Joplin, it is time to prepare. Forks come up and seats go down:


    Joel plays with the compression settings on his fork. He would smoke us all down Joplin:


    Looking down the draw that Joplin descends:


    Ready boys?


    Now I was feeling pretty good at the top of Joplin, but the trail was quickly getting the better of me. Dabs here, dabs there, dabs everywhere! After a long ride, the 40 pound bike becomes a handful. It was tiring coming down Joplin.

    Here at one of the steep and loose sections of trail we had guys all over the place. One guy off to the side here, one off to the side there. No wrecks, just brief loses of control and a good laugh.

    Pablo walks it down, his rim brakes overheated:


    Tani, though his rear brake is damaged, makes it through. Nice!


    Tani and Frank prepare to cross the creek near the bottom of Joplin:


    The guys waiting at Old Camp for Bill and Darin to arrive:


    Eric climbing his 39 pound beast out of Old Camp:


    Bill tells the guys about his crash on Joplin that scratched his face and cut his leg:


    Joel takes a swig of Eric's "medicine":


    Once Darin arrived we made our way down the Santiago Truck Trail.

    Tani got a flat part way down:


    The Luge was our last major descent of the day. I followed Joel and watched him jump the gap no problem. I went around. It was nice to ride The Luge during the day again.

    Two thirds of the way down I stopped and got this photo of Fergus:


    I felt much better coming down the Santiago Truck Trail and The Luge than I did Joplin. Must be easier when the trail stays put below your bike.

    A big thanks to Darin for putting together a great event.

    Also thanks to everyone who came out and did PushaKona 2!
    "I hope your gravity droppers all seize up....BASTIDS." - Aquaholic

    NLZ
    The Path Bike Shop
    Winston presents - Socal Videos

  2. #2
    Now broadcasting from CO
    Reputation: PAmtbiker's Avatar
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    I'm jealous

    Jeesh... looks like you guys had an awesome ride. I wish we had that kind of riding where I live.

  3. #3
    Floater
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    What a ride

    Great photos and story! Did you film any of it?

  4. #4
    Just another FOCer
    Reputation: Winston's Avatar
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    I decided to save myself 4 pounds of gear, so I didn't bring the helmet cam with me. (A rarity.)

    You can find video of Joplin and Upper Holy Jim that I shot recently in the Socal forum:

    Joplin
    Upper Holy Jim

    Quote Originally Posted by Floater
    Great photos and story! Did you film any of it?
    "I hope your gravity droppers all seize up....BASTIDS." - Aquaholic

    NLZ
    The Path Bike Shop
    Winston presents - Socal Videos

  5. #5
    ISO Gems...
    Reputation: Dirty D's Avatar
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    Nice...

    Quote Originally Posted by Winston
    I decided to save myself 4 pounds of gear, so I didn't bring the helmet cam with me. (A rarity.)

    You can find video of Joplin and Upper Holy Jim that I shot recently in the Socal forum:

    Joplin
    Upper Holy Jim
    Winston,

    Looks like a fun group, and the scenery really looks off the hook since it's been so clear lately. Thanks for the shots. Last weekend we headed up to do some hike a bike and trail blazing on the Webster Trail in Idyllwild.... fun descent... crappy hike out.

    D

  6. #6
    you know your crazy right
    Reputation: konahottie_311's Avatar
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    Wow

    That looks amazing..
    Boobs to the tube.......

  7. #7
    120 pounds of xc sex!
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    wow

    Nice ride. how much climbing, that fireroad in the beginning is intense.

    almost 6 miles incline right?
    Team X-poser is back for 2006-

    WTB; 1.25 inch tow rack in SoCal

    >Ankur<

  8. #8
    Don't be a sheep
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    Quote Originally Posted by carbnjunkie
    Nice ride. how much climbing, that fireroad in the beginning is intense.

    almost 6 miles incline right?
    Actually I believe Harding is 9mi. It's another 4mi to the peak which is 5680ft. They probably climbed close to 7500ft that day.
    "Do not touch the trim"

  9. #9
    mtbr member
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    Missed that one

    I guess I got to pay more attention at Fooriders. Looks like my kind of ride. So total time out there was just over 6 hours?
    I may not be as good as I once was.
    But I'm as good once, as I ever was.
    Toby Keith

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