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6 Gap century

wooglin

Monkey
Apr 4, 2002
535
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SC
Having blown off the Shenandoah Mtn 100, a ride I've been working towards all year, I needed some redemption -- something that would push whatever fitness I've been able to develop. This weekend was the 6 Gap century, a brutal day of climbing near Dahlonega, in the North Georgia mountains. The Tour de Georgia hits several of these climbs, and there's still a lot of paint on the road left over from that. Pretty neat seeing the names there.



First (and longest) climb of the day. Not too steep, but almost 7.5 miles long. Coming down the back side was a 40mph descent, and with lots of bunching still on the road it got a little hairy on occasion. It wasn't helped out by the fact that the sister ride (3 Gap 50) turned hard left towards the bottom while the rest of us went straight. Fortunately no one in my group had to make that turn.



The view from the rolling hills leading to Jacks. This wasn't much fun, but early on I looked over my shoulder and there was a familiar face. It took me a second, but the bike and kit wound up being a dead give away. You can see indieboy in the second picture. We wound up riding together for quite a ways, and it was real nice having someone to talk with.




The climb up Unicoi wasn't quite as foggy as it looks. A lot of that is my camera lens misting up from sweat. The weather was perfect though. The roads were dry and clear, and it was maybe in the low 80s at the bottom of hills and low 70s at the top. I'd zip up for the descents, but never thought I needed more clothes.



Top of Hogpen. I like to climb -- in fact I love to climb -- but Hogpen was very nearly my undoing, and had me wishing for a triple. Well, at least a 39t ring. ;)



Dropping in (roadie style) from the top of Hogpen. Fastest descent of the day. I don't know the roads and so took it easy, but I still clocked 50 coming down here without even trying. Nearly lost it in a corner at about that speed as well. That would have been ugly.



In a fog of pain near the top of Wolfpen Gap. That's misting on the lens again, but its about how I felt as well. This was another tough climb, although it was nothing compared to Hogpen. Hogpen has long and demoralizing straight sections. Wolfpen is much prettier.



Post ride, completely shattered. At the base of Woody's I realized I could finish in under 6 hours if I pushed it. So I did, passing and dropping the guy who'd led me up both Hogpen and Wolfpen, and then hammering for all I was worth on the long descent back into town. After the finish it took me about 10 minutes to get the energy just to loosen up my shoes, and another 5 before I could get out the camera and take this pic.



All in all, a good day, although I must say the sheer brutality of this ride took me by surprise. Much of the day was just about survival. I'm glad to have done so. Meeting indieboy was an unexpected bonus.
 

Blieb

Chimp
Apr 14, 2003
66
0
In Yo Face!
Awesome! I know some people who went up for that ...

If I ever get to do it, I'm gonna need some special gearing for the ride ... I heard the climbs are monsters.
 

indieboy

Want fries with that?
Jan 4, 2002
1,811
1
atlanta
that ride was so much fun. i love being up there in those mountains and having over 3000 ppl there for the ride was cool, very cool actually. kinda scared me having someone i don't really remember seeing many pictures come up to me saying "hey.....i know you!!!". i was thinking in my head "damn right you do mother****er!". i was hoping you'd stick around at the feeds. i was waiting on friends. you just rolled off and i was like "well guess i'll see him later on...." kinda wanted to show you the descents.
btw - check out my far better position on the bike than those knuckleheads we were riding with :)
 

wooglin

Monkey
Apr 4, 2002
535
0
SC
indieboy said:
you just rolled off and i was like "well guess i'll see him later on...."
Dammit, I was afraid you'd say that. I looked, I swear, but didn't see you. I thought you were up the road. :(

In fact, there was this guy pedalling squares just going around the next bend.....

;)
 

indieboy

Want fries with that?
Jan 4, 2002
1,811
1
atlanta
wooglin said:
Dammit, I was afraid you'd say that. I looked, I swear, but didn't see you. I thought you were up the road. :(

In fact, there was this guy pedalling squares just going around the next bend.....

;)
the only reason i was pedaling squares was so you could keep up and i could talk to you :)
 

indieboy

Want fries with that?
Jan 4, 2002
1,811
1
atlanta
loco said:
Awesome stuff. I wish I had that oppurtunity often.
people were there from all over the country. it was quite amazing. that century has gone from just 200-300 ppl showing up 5-6 years ago to 3000+
 
J

JRB

Guest
indieboy said:
people were there from all over the country. it was quite amazing. that century has gone from just 200-300 ppl showing up 5-6 years ago to 3000+
I may have to make it out one year. Indiana is my road trip this year.
 

indieboy

Want fries with that?
Jan 4, 2002
1,811
1
atlanta
i'm just so used to riding those roads, i don't go up there much but i know them well. but, it was just interesting to see even 13 yr old kids out there pluggin away at the climbs.
 

DBR X6 RIDER

Turbo Monkey
Nice post-ride-self-portrait. I have a few of those pics around somewhere from after a long, hot and grueling ride. It always seems to resemble the face of a person that just experienced some major torture/trauma.:monkey:

Sounds like it was a good time for sure.:cool:
 

wooglin

Monkey
Apr 4, 2002
535
0
SC
DBR X6 RIDER said:
Nice post-ride-self-portrait. I have a few of those pics around somewhere from after a long, hot and grueling ride. It always seems to resemble the face of a person that just experienced some major torture/trauma.:monkey:
Yeah, I try to get one after every big ride. Just for entertainment value.

Funny, they all look the same. :)