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Davis Double Ride Report

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Davis Double Ride Report

Old 05-23-22, 05:24 PM
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Davis Double Ride Report

Davis Double Ride Report

I’ve done quite a few doubles in California, but for some reason, never did the most popular of them all. The Davis Double. I had heard the route and support were great and thought it might be a good warm up to the coming Eastern Sierra Double, so I registered and off I went.

After a rather sucky 6 hour drive through the Central Valley on I5, I got to Davis at about 6:30 PM. What a cool place! Lots of tree lined streets with restaurants and UC Davis students about. Great atmosphere!




My buddy Ron had a room for us at the Vine Inn, right downtown and less than a mile from the start, which was super convenient. We had some dinner in town, and decided to start at 5-5:30 or so, when most people start (there is no official start time). At that time, it is still dark, so we all had lots of lights working for us.

The beginning of the ride is a flat affair through the Central Valley and as expected, was a celebration of pacelining. I ordinarily do not like pacelining with strangers, but everyone was riding predictably, so it was OK. We got to the foothills just as the Sun was rising.




Somewhere along the way, I lost Ron. He was right behind me, but maybe got gapped in some of the pacelining going on. I figured I would see him at the first rest stop. The pacelining pretty much ended when we got to the hills, and cyclists began to separate out. I’m a reasonably strong climber, so I passed some people in here.

I got some food, drink and endurolytes, and waited a bit for Ron. I didn’t see him coming up, so I thought to wait at the next stop. We had discussed that we might not be riding together, as Ron rides a little more casually on doubles, so that was ok.

One of the volunteers noticed my Race Across America jersey. Yea, it is one you have to earn, but I always say the same thing when people mention it: “4 Person team ... NOT solo!” as there is a HECK of a difference between the two. All the same it is a ride not a lot of people get to do, and I was privileged to be able to complete it with the team.

Somewhere along this section, on another climb, I encountered a group with really sweet jerseys. There were a lot of teams and clubs doing the ride, so I thought they were probably a local club. It turns out they were all just friends and they had been training for the ride for a month or two. They were pacelining really well, and going about my speed, so I joined in.

Oy, but the leader of this group was strong. He climbed strong and he did not let up in the flats. We pretty much flew through beautiful countryside with oaks, empty roads, and views of Lake Berryessa. At times it was COLD ... all of our hands were numb, but every time we got some sunlight, we warmed up nicely.




We rolled into the second stop in pretty good time, had a bit more to eat and drink, took care of nature’s business, and kept going. There is a steepish climb leaving this rest stop referred to as “The Wall” (a name applied to a lot of grades, no doubt), but it was short, and pretty soon we were flying through the oaks again to the third rest stop.

The support crew had just got there (Middletown) and was setting up! This was a first for me. I have never beaten the support crew to a rest stop 90 miles into a ride. Whoa.

So what did I do? Stuffed myself. TWO donuts and a PBJ sandwich. I drank lots and threw down some endurolytes (Note to anyone aspiring to a DC, especially one in the heat: eat early and eat often. Take lots of endurolytes and stay ahead of both your hunger and thirst. You’ll lose your appetite later and will be fueled by what you eat in the AM).




We stayed a good 40 minutes at least here, but eventually got on to the next leg of the ride, which included a 4 mile gravel stretch. I am not a fan of gravel, but for the most part, it wasn’t bad, even for a neophyte like me. After the gravel was a longish climb on some really quiet roads. And at the top, a sweet descent.




A little down from the top, one of the women stopped suddenly. The reason? Her skewer had come undone and was ½ way out of the axle! One of the other ladies noticed and told her to stop. It seems the front wheel was not secure and all the rattling on the gravel got the nut loose and now it was gone!

We called for sag support (lunch was only 5 miles away), but it took them a long time to get there ... 20 or 30 minutes. I waited with her for that time, then decided to ride to lunch and see what was holding up the sag.

When she got down, her entire skewer was now missing, and the mechanic did not have one. We called the nearest shop, but that was an hour or so more away. Then it dawned on me that someone was probably sagging at this point, and would likely lend her their skewer. It turns out that was exactly right! So we got the spare skewer, had an awesome lunch and headed off, disaster averted.

BTW, the Davis Bike Club supports this ride VERY well. One thing they had at lunch were socks. You fill them with ice, tie them together and drape them around your neck. It helps OODLES on hot days. I didn’t really need it, but it was nice to have the option!

We had some longish climbs and descents ahead, but they were manageable, so long as I kept hydrated and kept the hotfoot in check.

Oh, I should mention. Watermelon. GREAT for long hot rides. You get a lot of sugar, water, and electrolytes from it. And I consumed mass quantities. I think I ate a whole watermelon by the end of the ride.

From there, a steep then flattish descent with a pretty good tailwind. We made great progress through here, but the roads were a bit more beat up, so we got a bit more beat up. The rest stop at Guinda had some Cup O Noodles, and I wolfed one of those down. Not what you think you would want in 85F weather, but the salt and the carbs are good. It perks a lot of people up.

The guy that lead our paceline early on was having GI issues and feeling poorly. I thought that would mean that the pace of the paceline would let up, but the ladies took over and pretty much kicked my ass. Whatever their training regimen was, it worked!




When we got to Highway 16, we merged with another paceline, and we made a blistering pace along highway 16 to the cutoff. It was actually a good thing, as Highway 16 is a bit busy and we wanted to roll through there quickly.

Now we are back in the flat Central Valley again. It is hot, but there is no wind. All we have is 22 miles of brokenish pavement to the start. At this point, we slowed down a bit and enjoyed ourselves in the waning day.

As we approached the end, I could see all the trees in the distance and wondered if that was Winters or Davis. We passed a building “Davis Acupuncture” ... yay! Almost there.

It doesn’t matter how awesome a DC is, at the end of the day, your hands, feet, and rear end are pretty much done, so I am always glad to roll in and call it a day. They had burritos, cake, and other goodies at the end. I wasn’t hungry, but I grazed a little.

I had no idea where Ron was, so I rode to the hotel, took a shower and rode back to wait for him. By the time I got there, he had already arrived and was having dinner with some friends from the NorCal DC circuit. Fun stuff!

So that is the executive summary. Fun ride, great scenery, and great support. The weather was about perfect. DC#49 down and one to go!

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Old 05-23-22, 05:57 PM
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Nice report. Sounds like a nice ride. And, 4 person RAAM ain't nothin to sniff at and that jersey certainly means a LOT
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Old 05-23-22, 06:19 PM
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That was a nice read.
You lucked out a little with the weather this year.
And it's a pretty fair bet that you can trust folks on double centuries to be pretty good at pacelines.
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Old 05-23-22, 08:46 PM
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Thank you for reporting so well on the Davis Double. What a great adventure you had. It would be great if others took the time to document and provide pictures of their adventures at least as half as well as you did. Fortunately or unfortunately for you, it took me back to my college years.

When I was a student at UCD back in 77, accidentally stumbled into the DD when out riding my Schwinn Varsity in the valley though some orchards. I was in awe of the splendid racing bikes and guys (didn’t see one female) in real biking kit. Not knowing and/or caring, I joined the route for about 10 miles following the experienced and being passed by the much faster cyclists. It made a real impression on me. They no doubt thought, Who the hell is out here in cutoffs, tennis shoes and T-shirt?

Probably put 50,000 miles on that Varsity just commuting to school and work but always knew there were far nicer, lighter, more desirable bikes, like the DD riders had. When I could afford it, I bought a Bianchi Trofeo and my cycling adventure began. The Bianchi took me on more centuries than I can remember and a few doubles as well as the infamous, Ride Around Mount Rainier in one day a few times. Thanks again for sharing.
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Old 05-23-22, 10:00 PM
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Nice report Vic. Glad you had a good ride.
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Old 05-25-22, 12:40 PM
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Well done report and pics. Glad you had a great ride. My only question is did you use the HR on your watch? Or even wear it?
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Old 05-25-22, 04:03 PM
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Awesome!!!!! You make it sound so easy and we all know they’re pretty challenging!! But having a group which rides a similar pace makes a huge difference.

First I’ve ever heard of a skewer issue. Makes you wonder if it was tight enough????
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Old 05-26-22, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by jppe View Post
Awesome!!!!! You make it sound so easy and we all know they’re pretty challenging!! But having a group which rides a similar pace makes a huge difference.

First I’ve ever heard of a skewer issue. Makes you wonder if it was tight enough????
My guess is that it was not really secure when it was installed. There is a 4 mile section of gravel that probably rattled the end nut loose, and the rest was inevitable. She happened to discover it on a longish fast descent, so it could have been much worse!
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Old 05-26-22, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
Well done report and pics. Glad you had a great ride. My only question is did you use the HR on your watch? Or even wear it?
Lol ... funny you would mention that!

I DID wear the watch, but it inexplicably didn't start up again after lunch and then pooped out after about 160 miles. That makes for a funny looking route!

And yea ... my heart rate peaked at 177. Bad boy! <slaps his own wrist>



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Old 06-01-22, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
The beginning of the ride is a flat affair
LOL! You ain't kidding! The flattest ride I've ever done in my life was an out & back from Davis to Winters: 40 miles round trip, total elevation gain of 28 feet!
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Old 07-12-22, 08:10 AM
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Quite an accomplishment!
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