Hurricane Cogal 2014

Hurricane Cogal 2014

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When someone uses the phrase “bucket list” within my hearing, I want to give them a snot-laden cycling glove across the chops. Because when you use a dead metaphor like that one in connection with the topic of mortality, it means that you don’t adequately appreciate the finality of mortality. “Dead metaphor,” get it? Death deserves his due, as they say, whatever the hell they think they mean by that. I’m saying that dead metaphors do not serve the vital function of warding off death.

The only reason I bring that up is because if 1) you live in the Pacific Northwest and 2) you are a Cyclist and 3) you have not ridden Hurricane Ridge, well, you should, while you can. Here’s why: it’s an HC climb that begins at the salt water of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and climbs, without relent, to 1600 meters. ‘Muricans, do the math. (Hint: it’s 5242 feet.) It’s not a steep climb, but it’s a damned long one that doesn’t give you a break, and it’s entirely up to you how you let it treat you. That’s freedom. That’s life, which we all understand to be the opposite of death.

This ride also offers the strange and exotic opportunity to stay at El Rancho del Stumpo del Norte, free of charge. El Rancho–the beginning and end of the route–is a demi-funky log home with an outbuilding and lots of covered porch area on five secluded acres about ten miles east of Sequim. (That’s right; it’s nowhere.) There is effectively unlimited camping space, whether that means pitching a tent or throwing a sleeping bag on the porch or passing out “dead” drunk on the rocked-in fire pit in the back yard. There will be unlimited supplies of ale; there will be music indoors and out; there will be fire and food cooked over fire. There will be The Most Interesting Dog in the World.

More importantly, there will be Velominati. And their bikes. And a big fucking climb. And, as should follow, one of the funnest descents ever: smooth pavement, light traffic, and views that tempt you to divert your gaze from your line at high rates of speed.

The details of the route are to be determined; ongoing work on Hwy 101 will determine some details. But this is the general idea: http://www.mapmyride.com/routes/view/387985892. Basically, we’re talking 150km, roughly, with a 1600-meter climb in the middle of it, with maybe 2400 meters of total elevation gain. Have a look at the route, and you’ll see a very symmetrical pattern: a flat, a climb, a flat. You could, I suppose, use an internal combustion device to avoid the flat bits. I don’t know why you would, but you could. There are ample opportunities to water up or refuel in Sequim and in Port Angeles, which is at the beginning of the business. At the top of Hurricane Ridge, there’s a lodge with basic services (water, bathrooms, and crap food). For detailed info, email me at davidbrande(aht)gmail(dawt)com.

Event Details

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Date/Time
Date - August 23, 2014
9:05 AM - 8:00 PM

Location
Peakintwoyears HQ

Cogal Details
Route Details

Ride Classification

// Cogal // Rule VV (Climbing)

  1. Still in for this!  With any luck the Edmonds ferry will run early enough so I don’t have to get too early to drive around.  Current weather forecast looks fantastic!

    Five bucks to get into the park, so bring a little cash or your trusty America The Beautiful pass.

  2. I will sadly not make this ride, which is too bad. I will vow to crush this climb later this year and make sure to invite everyone. Sorry to miss the party!

  3. Sir Lance is entering the lists, on a fucking horse, with a long pointy thing.

    We’ll miss you, @frank. And @eightzero, really? C’mon, man, who’s going to bring the Wild Turkey 101.5?

  4. Must send my regrets. A Rule VV ride of this magnitude isn’t in the cards for me right now; and the logistics of a cross sound trek complicated by some family obligations.

    I’ll bring the WT101 to the VVhidbey Cogal.

  5. Ah, well. So much for my beatific vision of exhausted piss-drunk Velominati puking all over my backyard.

    What does one have to do? Not live at the ass end of God? Promise more climbing? Import a Belgian?

  6. @PeakInTwoYears yes, living somewhere that involves less ferries/epic driving would probably help. However, I am looking forward to that fire pit and will be bringing whatever interesting thing I have in the liquor cabinet to celebrate.

    See you Friday night… late. (coming across on the 9:10PM from Coupeville)

  7. @DeKerr

    Excellent. Looking forward to meeting you. Call me, if you like, at 503.780.7426 to discuss what you’ll find when you drive into the Compound and where you might have a nice lie-down if the VMH and I are already unconscious, which is likely.

    We’ll have plenty of edibles for a light breakfast (incl good coffee) and a less-light dinner. If you’re veg or have other dietary pref’s, let’s talk.

  8. @eightzero

    Must send my regrets. A Rule VV ride of this magnitude isn’t in the cards for me right now; and the logistics of a cross sound trek complicated by some family obligations.

    I’ll bring the WT101 to the VVhidbey Cogal.

    Oh, and I just talked to Shari on the phone and told her you bailed, and she was really disappointed because she’d gotten out her old photos from her Johnson Space Center days. (Knowing a little about the crowd she ran with, there’re probably a lot of snaps of drunk naked astronauts. Your loss, I guess.)

  9. I think I might be able to make this one after all. Rode with you at the Arlington Cogal…good fun. Think I will be severely humbled by this climb, though. Should arrive sometime later Friday pm.

  10. Eric, right on! It’ll be good to see you again, briefly, before you drop me.

    Give me a call later at 503.780.7426 to get the dope on what to expect when you arrive–where to crash if it’s late and we’re down already, anything else.

  11. Btw, anyone who keeps kosher or is veg will want to supply their own protein for post-ride grilling.

    A friend of ours is the kahuna of organic farming on the Peninsula, and he raises happy, delicious pigs that make fabulous pork burgers.

  12. @PeakInTwoYears so what you’re saying is semitic, teetotalling, PETA-supporting participants are on their own.

    “If nature hadn’t wanted us to eat pigs it wouldn’t have made them so damn tasty!”

    I will trade you the currency of your country for several of these pork burgers you speak of… or whiskey… your choice.

  13. @DeKerr

    @PeakInTwoYears so what you’re saying is semitic, teetotalling, PETA-supporting participants are on their own.

    “If nature hadn’t wanted us to eat pigs it wouldn’t have made them so damn tasty!”

    I will trade you the currency of your country for several of these pork burgers you speak of… or whiskey… your choice.

    Now, now. I know a number of semites who do not keep kosher. Some of them are my closest friends.

    But you can keep your currency–either the real thing or whatever beads or such you exchange up there–and pour me some whiskey while your burgers cook.

  14. Oh, and this

    is an iteration of Lim’s rice cakes that involve, that comprise and convolute, the smoky ends of the smoked ham from our last pig from Nash’s farm. It’s the savory to go with the blueberry batch I just put in the fridge.

  15. @PeakInTwoYears

    @eightzero

    Must send my regrets. A Rule VV ride of this magnitude isn’t in the cards for me right now; and the logistics of a cross sound trek complicated by some family obligations.

    I’ll bring the WT101 to the VVhidbey Cogal.

    Oh, and I just talked to Shari on the phone and told her you bailed, and she was really disappointed because she’d gotten out her old photos from her Johnson Space Center days. (Knowing a little about the crowd she ran with, there’re probably a lot of snaps of drunk naked astronauts. Your loss, I guess.)

    Haha! Well, bring them to the VVhidbey Cogal.

    And all astronauts were drunk embarrassments. And that was just the girls.

  16. Late last night, after post-ride ales, dinner, and a companionable fire in the back yard, I chatted briefly online with a fellow Velominatus who said, “Cogals are like heaven.” Well and succinctly put.

    We had eight in all, the VMH and I plus six hearty, good-natured, clever souls who made the trip to the Olympic Peninsula for a good long day on the bike. @ChrissyOne, @lance, @cognition, and a pleasant sturdy fellow by the name of Mike came in from points around Puget Sound; and @DeKerr and @Eric came down from Vancouver. Others here have said it before, but it’s worth saying it again: there is something about a Cogal that seems to be a potent douche-repellent. Herself and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of these folks’ company, both on the ride and back at the ranch.

    Not having put many miles in this year, I suffered even more on the climb than I have in the past, but I feel that as the oldest person on the ride I maintained a certain gravitas in the role of lanterne rouge. As usual, Sir Lance Climbsalot put some hurt on the field. And the descent–oh my, the descent. For fifteen of the eighteen miles, @ChrissyOne, @cognition, and I had unobstructed lines down the mountain. Brakes? Who needed them? It was the most fun I have ever had riding a bike downhill, and I like riding a bike downhill.

    Another couple of hours, then, of casually deliberate riding on the flats had us back at the ranch draining bottles of ale and having a short way with pork burgers. Certain of us did epic deeds by those burgers. Chapeau.

    I’ll try to post a few crappy cell-phone pics, but they won’t do it any kind of justice. It was simply an epic day of riding and companionship.

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  18. A-Merckx!

  19. That was the most fun and most intense ride I have ever done, and I’m still thinking about the rice cakes pictured above. My guns are still aglow with a lovely ache. The company and hospitality made this a perfect day. Thanks again for the wonderful times, ya’ll.

  20. Truly epic – in scale and in execution. Drs PeakIn and Shari were the hosts with the mosts and owners of one of the most comfortable porches I have had the privilege of sleeping on.

    @lance climbs like a beast, having had the further privilege of bridging up to him, taking a pull, and then having him drop me with 3 miles to go. On the flip side Captain Mike descends like someone who has consumed some top-secret form of digestible depleted uranium, which he probably has given his line of work. And, having witnessed her consumption of a fair number of pork burgers I can safely say@ChrissyOne climbs well for her weight.

    Hope to see y’all in the fall if @eightzero can ever get his act together and provide some details for the VVhidbey Cogal of the Falling Leaves.

  21. This sounds like it was a great event; fun to read about. Good write up @PeakInTwoYears.

  22. Mmm… pork burgers…

  23. Peakingintwoyears,

    A public thanks for hosting.  An amazing climb and great company.

  24. @DeKerr

    Hope to see y’all in the fall if @eightzero can ever get his act together and provide some details for the VVhidbey Cogal of the Falling Leaves.

    It’s in @gianni ‘s hands.

  25. Just got home the other day after continuing on my riding journey. Thanks again David & Shari for hosting us all. Your hospitality was warm, and I felt at home at the estate immediately upon arrival. Even the “most interesting dog in the world” was waiting patiently to greet me, as I rolled up the meandering drive to the main ranch house, with nary a bark nor ruff. Seems he had been trained to let cars with bikes pass unhindered!

    The food was stellar, and the only downside was not having stuffed more of those rice cakes into my pockets after downing both of them at the top of the Ridge!

    These Cogals are a great, unpretentious way to get out riding with diverse and interesting like-minded people. Is there one on Whidbey in a month? Have to look that up!

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