Since the weather has been completely awesome here (I apologize to the people back East), Mike and I have been out riding as much as possible. We took off to Aguirre Springs on Saturday for some major hill climbing.
We like to park on the opposite side of the Organ Mountains and then bike up the pass over into the Aguirre Spring campground area.
I always forget how terrible I am at downhill biking. You never really think about that, but when there are major hills I clam up and think about the fact that I am going really fast and could be part of the asphalt if I don’t play it right. I had to keep stopping because I was developing the “crab claw”, which is from holding your brakes so tight that you can’t let go. I hate to say it but I’ve had the “crab claw” before during races too.
I don’t think you can tell in this picture, but this downhill is intense once you make it to the highest point of the loop. The whole loop from where we parked on the other side of the mountain is about 15 miles. The inner loop, which is very steep, is about 4 miles.
If you look closely in this picture, on the left hand side towards the top, you can see your destination. Just take my word for it, it is a big climb. My Strava totalled about 2600 feet in climbing.
This guy came along with me and decided to show me up and do three loops around the hard part of the course.
It’s a good thing I like him 🙂
On the climb back to where I was picked up, I felt pretty great because the climbing is very gradual. I even made a Queen of the Mountain on the final ascent!
I totally recommend this ride for strengthening hill climbing skills. I did this ride right before my first road race in 2011 and it definitely prepared me for it.