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Old 05-12-19, 07:20 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Jerusalem
Posts: 133

Bikes: Diamondback Haanjo Trail

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There seems to be very little "gravel" here as it's either road or MTB (at least to me). I have not seen another gravel bike here in over a year. I switched out my 40mm Kenda gravel tires for 32mm Conti GrandPrix last fall and have been riding 99.9% road. There is a 1 mile section I did miss riding, though, but have avoided it since I didn't know if the tires were capable. Even with the Kenda's, I'd get some slipping on the 12% sections and there is a short section of 15%. I decided I would just walk it if I couldn't ride it.

The rain in Israel stopped about 3 weeks ago and it's getting brown again. This road is used by bikes, motocross bikes, cars, and hikers. It's also a section of the Israel National Trail (hiking, not biking).

That sliver of dirt you see in the upper right corner is where I'm headed. The climb really wasn't as challenging as I remember it, but what made it difficult was the sweat in my eyes and the flies that swarmed me to get a taste.

There are several approaches to the Yad Kennedy memorial, but this is the toughest. After climbing up the trail (about 1/4 from the right side of the pic), you get to this paved switchback section with the grade getting up to 16%. I was pleased with myself because when I first rode this almost a year ago, I thought my heart would explode. Today, it was just another ride in Jerusalem.

Finally I'm at Yad Kennedy. It's the perfect rest stop and turning around point--has a bathroom, water fountain, shade, always a nice breeze, and an excellent view. It makes for a nice 20+ mile round trip.

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