Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Chinatown Firecracker Ride in pictures!

This was my first time at the Chinatown Firecracker ride - there were two routes offered - an easy flat 20 miler, and a hilly 30 miler.

I chose the hilly route, thinking it would be fun.

It was, but the main challenge wasn't the climbs, but navigating Los Angeles' legendary shitty roads. 

Starting line

And the impending rain, of course. Despite hopes that it would hold off, it started sprinkling just as the race started. Luckily, it never really rained, just misted enough to make the roads slick and fog up everyone's glasses.


The ride had a really nice mix of people, and since it wasn't a race but an organized ride, there wasn't such a sense of urgency to go flat-out, but I did end up joining one of the pacelines, which was fun, but since the road was wet I got covered in the goop being thrown up by the tire in front of me.  I looked like "Pig Pen" from the Peanuts cartoons.

Griffith Park

About halfway through Griffith Park, the blue sky started to peek through the clouds.

Steep climb

So steep that everyone had to stop and rest 
The only aid station of the ride was at the halfway point, located at Travel Town.

Aid station
Appropriately, we were given fortune cookies in addition to the standard fare of pretzels and bananas.

Fortune cookie for the Chinatown ride! Get it?
...in bed.
Good thing they had a repair station at Travel Town, as a large number of people were having mechanical problems related to the wetness and shittiness of the roads.

By the time I left the aid station, the sun had come out and it was a gorgeous. We rode through Burbank. looped back to the LA River bike path, and made our way back to Chinatown, where there was a huge line for the promised carbo load lunch:

Load me up! I'm hungry!
Noodles, and more fortune cookies.
There was a beer tent, which seemed promising, but they weren't serving good beer. I wasn't expecting top-end microbrew or anything but:

I'm sorry, I thought someone said there was to be beer.
I didn't drink any of the so-called beer, instead opting for a Vietnamese iced coffee from the Pho place across the street.

Red Lanterns

Red Lanterns and puffy clouds

Gong on a shop
I wandered around for a bit, chatted with some fellow riders and some friends who were there picking up packets for the run on Sunday.

When I got home, the first thing I had to to was wash the gunk off Gary, then I took a shower myself.

It was a really fun ride, and I'll definitely do it again next year, but I'll seriously consider bringing a mountain bike because of the pavement.

1 comment:

  1. There are no raods in the world worse than Michigan roads. Book it.


I love comments! Thanks!