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2014 Crush the Commonwealth

This topic contains 104 replies, has 30 voices, and was last updated by  Mick 4 mos, 1 week.

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stefb

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Dec 1 2013 at 12:27pm #

April 25, 2014. Liberty Bell, Philly. 5am.


Vannevar

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Dec 1 2013 at 3:47pm #

I like the rules:

http://www.crushthecommonwealth.com/the-rules/


stefb

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Dec 1 2013 at 6:09pm #

There are no prizes either.


reddan

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Dec 1 2013 at 7:21pm #

Pro tip: don’t drive a U-haul full of bikes into downtown Philly during rush hour the day before the race.


mrosswog

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Dec 1 2013 at 10:05pm #

In.


RustyRed

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Dec 1 2013 at 10:46pm #

reddan wrote:Pro tip: don’t drive a U-haul full of bikes into downtown Philly during rush hour the day before the race.

Center City, n’at!


Drewbacca

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Dec 1 2013 at 11:57pm #

RustyRed wrote:
Center City, n’at!

Are you crying? Sounds like a lot of Wawa to me.


RustyRed

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Dec 2 2013 at 12:17am #

Drewbacca wrote:

Are you crying? Sounds like a lot of Wawa to me.

+1


cburch

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Dec 2 2013 at 1:26pm #

go to the mall in valley forge instead. the trail goes right behind it. they can ride into town for a nice warmup.


Jim

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Dec 2 2013 at 9:32pm #

This time maybe I’ll bring a few more clothes to avoid a hypothermic experience in Burger King (as much fun as that was!).


Mick

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Dec 2 2013 at 10:54pm #

Hypothermia on top of exhaustion is like thick icing on a shit cake.


stefb

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Dec 3 2013 at 4:19am #

Maybe we won’t have shit weather this year…


cburch

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Dec 3 2013 at 11:30am #

stefb wrote:Maybe we won’t have shit weather this year…

points and laughs


mrosswog

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Dec 7 2013 at 11:00pm #

I’m thinking about riding across the state on PA route Y or V before heading home on Route S for the race.


Shawn

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Dec 25 2013 at 12:04am #

I’m in. This will be my first.


wpurvis2013

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Dec 30 2013 at 11:19am #

I’m in … 4/25/14 …. Sounds like a great ride.


Marko82

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Dec 30 2013 at 11:39am #

Last year a dozen or so non-competitors rode along for the first few miles as a send off parade to the race. We then went off to breakfast – which I think is the only smart choice on race day :-). I wonder if our friends in the city-of-brotherly-love are going to be as hospitable to the competitors this year. (yes that is a challenge to see which city can get spectators out at 5am)


Shawn

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Jan 3 2014 at 3:45pm #

This is my first attempt at doing this, so I would love to hear any tips you all have. I know there are threads from prior years, but any new “lessons learned” would truly be appreciated (besides losing 50lbs and riding more).

I’m building up a new steel touring ride as incentive for 2014 CTC. Hopefully it will be done in the new few weeks so I can properly break it in.


jonawebb

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Jan 3 2014 at 4:22pm #

I’d say you need to practice long rides, to work out equipment and clothing issues, as well as endurance. Quite a few of the riders who quit in 2013 seemed to do so because they got too cold, or had some critical piece of equipment fail without a backup.


reddan

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Jan 3 2014 at 4:33pm #

This is my first attempt at doing this, so I would love to hear any tips you all have. I know there are threads from prior years, but any new “lessons learned” would truly be appreciated (besides losing 50lbs and riding more).

I’m building up a new steel touring ride as incentive for 2014 CTC. Hopefully it will be done in the new few weeks so I can properly break it in.

Here’s my FAQ. I need to update it, but all the basic stuff should still be legit.

IMO: comfort trumps efficiency. Obviously, don’t take that statement too far…however, you’re gonna be on your bike for well over a day at best, so even small problems in fit will be greatly magnified. You don’t have to do stupid-crazy amounts of training, but it’s a good idea to try to get at least one or two rides > 100 miles under your belt, so you can be sure that what feels good after 20 miles still feels okay after 120.

Specific to this year: east-to-west is harder, so pace yourself accordingly. You’ve got well over 120 miles of mostly flat (slightly rising, but nothing dramatic) riding before you hit the first climbs, so be aware that it’s easy to burn too much gas before Chambersburg/Cowan’s Gap/Breezewood->Bedford->Somerset.

If you have any dietary restrictions or preferences, plan ahead; there’s a Sheetz or similar at least every 60 miles or so, but, depending on time of day, there may be very little else available in that 60-mile leg. I strongly suggest that you carry enough food and fluids to be able to ride 50-60 miles without needing to refuel.

The worst stretch for climbing is probably the last few miles before Somerset, and, as you summit Dividing Ridge, you can look forward to a nice 10-15% grade for the last quarter-mile. That said, once you roll into Somerset, there’s no climbing of note left in the route…just a few miles of the GAP. ;-)

If you plan to sleep in a motel, shoot for Chambersburg, Breezewood, or Bedford; if you make it to Somerset before getting terribly sleepy, ya might as well just keep rolling and get a really good finish time. :-)

Have fun!


stefb

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Jan 3 2014 at 9:18pm #

Yep the section after somerset in 2013 went ever so fast compared to 2012, even though it was pouring so hard I couldn’t see, and the temperature was dropping. A lot easier going down than up.


stefb

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Mar 15 2014 at 3:01pm #

Top. Getting excited?


Drewbacca

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Mar 15 2014 at 6:00pm #

training for it… not sure if I’ll participate or not, yet.


Shawn

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Mar 15 2014 at 10:37pm #

Yup. Training in progress. Flu going through my household set me back a few weeks, but looking to hit things hard over the next several weeks.


Jacob McCrea

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Mar 16 2014 at 11:58am #

I’ve thought about doing this a few times over the years, but have never had the time, the fitness and the motivation come together at that point in the year. This year is no exception, but 2015 is possible.

That said, if people would cover my fuel costs I’d be happy to throw as many as nine (9) bikes in my truck and haul them out for the good of this worthy cause. Five (5) bikes fit on the rack in the bed, and four (4) more fit on a custom hitch-mount bike rack. With some planning the trip out could be done with 2 vehicles. Let me know if there’s any interest.


Shawn

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Mar 16 2014 at 12:31pm #

@jacob. Not sure what your fitness level is, but I can’t be too much better. I do have the motivation aspect.

Awesome for the driving offer. Id love a ride out!!! I was just about to try and rent a truck online. But they hit you with the one way rental fees.

Feel free to pm me for more info.


Jim

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Mar 18 2014 at 11:29pm #

Shawn and Jacob –

I’m definitely interested in car pooling. Are either of you still up for this?


Jacob McCrea

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Mar 19 2014 at 9:17am #

I am planning to drive out the Thursday evening before the race. I’ve been wanting to visit two museums in the Philly area and this will provide a great opportunity to do that.

So far Shawn and one of his friends are doing the race, and have spoken for two of the seats. There is room for one more person in the truck, and plenty of room for 7 more bikes and gear, and you are welcome to come along. That said, if you are over 6′ tall the truck’s extended cab can get a little cramped over a long trip. It is a full-size truck, but not a full 4-door crew cab. However, it will be far more comfortable than, say, hour 27 of the race. Just let me know if you want a spot.


Jim

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Mar 19 2014 at 12:46pm #

Jacob – count me in!

I’ll PM you with my contact info.

Thanks!


Shawn

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Mar 19 2014 at 12:52pm #

Jacob, you planning on picking me up when I hurt myself 100 miles in as well? Haha.


purpleburley

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Apr 8 2014 at 6:42am #

My buddy and I are riding CtC and we have a rental van lined up for the trip back east after it’s over. One of us going to Easton, PA, one to Trenton, NJ. If you are reading this msg board, there’s an excellent chance you’re looking to get *to* the start in Philly not *back home* after the finish, but I’ll put this out there anyway –

Anybody looking for a ride back to Philly area? I’ve got a rental minivan with two open slots. Only requirements are you need to be ready to depart PGH 9am Sunday morning (got to be back to work on Monday,) and be willing to share expenses. I estimate rental, fuel and tools to come in about $300 total. If we get 2 additional riders, we split that 4 ways. First two interested parties to contact me are in. Thx, Ron


mjyc

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Apr 9 2014 at 2:33pm #

@stefb, I just read your blog entry about last year’s ride and it makes me masochistically interested…. just not on a week and a half’s notice.

2015, here I come


stefb

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Apr 9 2014 at 4:26pm #

I find doing it the hard way first makes the next year seem soooo much easier.


mjyc

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Apr 9 2014 at 6:48pm #

UGH! You’re breakin my [figurative] balls!! You are a stronger woman than I.


pearmask

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Apr 15 2014 at 10:31pm #

Getting excited about this. With no distance training at all since, uh, last CTC, plus a new bicycle that I haven’t ridden more than about 40 miles at one time so far, I may actually explode a body part and/or set a slowest-time record, but it’s all about the adventure, right?

I know Dan’s blog has RideWithGPS data / cue sheets. Does anybody else have a good cue sheet or other directional information for the westbound route? I kinda, sorta can’t find my Garmin, and I’m kinda, sorta directionally challenged (as evidenced by all the bonus miles I rode last year, whoops), so I’m trying to make sure I have as much information as possible for when I start deliriously missing those Bicycle Route S signs…


stefb

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Apr 16 2014 at 6:39am #

Prelimary forecast shows warm temps with rain. 100% chance of skin breakdown.


Shawn

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Apr 16 2014 at 9:26am #

@Pearmask- I just bought the touring Garmin. I found a few routes for CTC on the internet (ridewithgps), but for some reason, I’m not able to upload them to my Garmin Connect. So, unless some “white knight” wants to email another route file to upload, I am going to manually create the route and download it to my Garmin. I’m 99% sure that I can print out a cuesheet after that, which I will be more that willing to share!

And I’m super-pumped as well. My “training has sucked.” My longest ride of the year has been 60 miles. I will be HURTING. But my goal is just to finish!


stefb

Private Message

Apr 16 2014 at 11:11am #

I was considering a 300k this weekend but that may be overkill. I somehow had an 800 mile month last month with as much as I work, and I am on track to do over 1000 this month.


Drewbacca

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Apr 16 2014 at 11:50am #

Still not sure if I’ll be participating, it’s getting to be too last minute and I haven’t made any arrangements. The bike that I would be riding hasn’t been touched since maybe last October. I haven’t even seen it since Christmas… LOL *sigh* Every year is an improvement though, I finally got a good set of panniers, a good shell, some dependable layers, a pair of gloves that don’t double for working on my car, and a light that actually allows me to see things (two of those, in fact).

If anyone has extra last-minute space (for bike and rider) in a Philly bound vehicle, let me know after this weekend, because that might be what I base my decision on.

I ended up returning my Garmin Oregon to REI when I got an iphone with data. I might check out one of the new touring Garmin’s though.


reddan

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Apr 16 2014 at 3:13pm #

So, unless some “white knight” wants to email another route file to upload,

Here’s a .gpx dumped from my RideWithGPS route: https://www.dropbox.com/s/xshos72pkbvjiyt/CTC_Westbound_%28approximate%29.gpx

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