Category Archives: Biking

Sisters Tour California

Between August and mid-October I spent a lot of hours working on a stream restoration project in Lake Tahoe. The end of the field season was going to correspond almost perfectly with my sister’s trip to California for her work with the non-profit Impact edVentures, a surfing and service trip to Santa Barbara, CA. Well, that trip was called off, but she was still coming out to California to recruit students, so we made a plan to meet up in San Luis Obispo and do some surfing and general coast touring.

I was able to get off a few days early and so I decided to first rally down to the Eastern Sierras Wednesday morning and do some leaf peeping as well as mountain biking and hiking with my friend Tim. The weather was perfect and the colors were peaking. We did a super fun mountain bike ride along lower Rock Creek and a hike from Lundy Canyon up into the Lakes Basin in Yosemite National Park. It was a fabulous and relaxing start to the trip.

Lower Rock Creek aspen grove

Early morning light at Lundy Canyon camp

Hike into the High Sierra – Lakes Basin

Next I headed down to SLO to meet up with my sister and her friend at the Thursday night Farmers Market. I’d never been there and the town was pretty awesome – bustling after the Farmer’s market, there were cute stores and cool bars and restaurants everywhere. We went to bed pretty early so that we could explore town more via bike the next morning.

After grabbing breakfast at Sally Loo’s (AWESOME) and riding around town, we headed out to the coast to the local state park Montana de Oro and explored hidden surf spots and bluffs.

New friend Julie checking out Hazards surf spot.

Coastal bluffs at Montana de Oro

We grabbed some lunch at an amazing Thai place in Los Osos and Nicole and I headed to Pismo Beach to try our hand at surfing. Pismo was sunny and warm and the swell was good enough that we could stay away from better surfers and catch a mixture of big waves and beach break. We both got pummeled for about an hour, but had some good rides. I caught the biggest wave I’ve ever caught only to face plant off the board on the drop in! Surfing is always humbling and must take months to even become an intermediate! I have so much respect for good surfers and the ocean in general. After we were exhausted, we changed and took a walk on the Pismo pier and saw about 10 dolphins playing in the surf, a bunch of huge pelicans up close, and an incredible sunset. We liked this place and made plans to come back the next morning for another session.

The Pelicans of Pismo Pier

Sunset at Pismo Beach

After another fun night in SLO, and a morning surf session at Pismo Beach, Nicole and I drove north up the coast towards Big Sur. We stopped at overlooks and other classic Central California Coast sites.

Elephant seals near San Simeon – 500 of the 10,000 that were on the coast!

Big Sur classic shot at McWay Falls

We scored the last camp spot at Pfieffer Big Sur State Park with just enough time to hike up to another waterfall and set up camp. The campground there has eluded me for years. The first year I went there, it was raining non-stop forcing us to evacuate to our dry homes. 3 years ago, my husband and I returned and it was closed due to flooding damage. But this year, we finally got to camp there, in good weather and it really was a perfect Big Sur site – Redwoods, a beautiful river, nice sites, sunny weather, and quick access to many cool hikes and beaches, like the one we rode our bikes to the next morning – Pfieffer Beach.

Pfieffer Beach is so cool! Can’t believe I hadn’t been there!

Biomimicry at Pfeiffer Beach

By lunchtime Sunday we were in Santa Cruz and at my friend Matt’s awesome property. Waves were small and the tides were high, but we hit up Pleasure Point for an evening surf and grabbed dinner in Capitola before hanging out at the hot tub and calling it a night. Monday morning I woke up to rain and it was time to get back to Tahoe since it was snowing! All in all, it was a perfect 5 day trip. California is full of so many great places that it could take a lifetime to explore them all.


Filed under Biking, Travel

Fall Fun in Tahoe!

This weekend was way too much fun! It started off with a killer diving board session on $1 Fridays at the Carson Valley Swim Center. Some pro skiers were there showing us how it is done and it was good to scare myself by throwing gainers all night. My biggest accomplishment was nailing some gainers off the 1 meter board since previously I could only get them around on the 3 meter board. My friend Lauren took a few great photos.

Gainer off the 3m board – by the end of November I’m getting a lay out!

Skier JJ Schiller throwing something I don’t know the name of.

Saturday AM, I was up early to hit up Mr. Toads Wild Ride with friends Canyon and Debbie. I was stoked that they wanted to get out early since I had plans to hang out with my friend Allison later in the day – whose $7,000 bike was stolen from my house last week – but I’ll get to that later. We didn’t see another rider on the trail, but by the time we finished there were at least 15 cars parked at both the bottom and top of the shuttle. The dirt was tacky and perfect from the rain Tahoe received on Friday and I nailed the rock garden line for the first time, which has scared me since I laid eyes on it in 2006. I credit the time I spent running downhill at Northstar with Nils and my newly acquired POC shin pads for giving me the skills and confidence to ride that section.

“Team Adventure” on the way up to Mr. Toads Wild Ride. Great friends and good times!

Then the most incredibly awesome thing happened (besides both Notre Dame and the Detroit Tigers winning) – we received a call that Allison’s bike was found and at the police station!!! YES, somebody from Wattabike saw the bike, called it in, and the South Lake Tahoe Police recovered it! UNBELIEVABLE!

The bike was recovered! The flyers worked! Justice is restored! The best part is the lock the bike thief bought for it, which I’m pointing to.

Yep, Saturday was amazing. Could Sunday top it? Probably not. But I gave it a go anyway…

Three of my friends met me at my house to do a SheJumps Flume Trail ride. With the recent rain, we knew we couldn’t pass up the Chimney Beach Downhill, so we met at Chimney Beach, but no other girls showed up! Without the ability to set a shuttle, we decided to take a chance and do the ride anyway… we’d just figure the shuttle out later. So we started off from Mt. Rose and rode a super fun 18 miles of singletrack with expansive Lake Tahoe and Washoe Valleys as well as peaking aspens, and ripping downhills! I even cleaned a section I’ve been scared of for 3 years since I once endo’d and popped both tires trying it! The weather was perfect and we all had a great time. We even scored a ride when we saw two friendly guys descending Chimney Beach Downhill and asked if we could join their shuttle. I had so much fun riding with the girls… I can’t wait to do it again!

Cleaning a section that I’ve been scared of for a while!

Juliana on the scenic Flume Trail

The whole crew above Lake Tahoe on the Flume

SheJumps in the aspens near Marlette Lake

Oh yeah, and the Tigers and Lions both won! AWESOME weekend once again thanks to my AWESOME friends!

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Filed under Biking, Tahoe

Fall Showed up this Past Weekend in Tahoe…

I rode my awesome new commuter build around Tahoe putting up flyers for this event!

New take on an old classic – Alaska bike becomes flyering machine!

The fall temperatures were perfect so I headed to Octoberfest at Camp Richardson to meet some friends and then check out the spawning Kokanee Salmon.

Non-native, but awesome, Salmon spawn up Taylor Creek from Lake Tahoe.

Then next day we got a round of golf in at Edgewood. The course was in amazing shape, and the views were spectacular per usual.

The author teeing off on scenic hole 17.

PK with a great shot out of the sand on 17.

I’ll take a few more enjoyable fall weekends and some time to prepare physically for ski season, but Mammoth opens in less than one month! So when October turns to November, let’s hope the snow start flying!


Filed under Biking, Fundraising, Random rambling, Tahoe

SheJumps Tahoe 2012/13 Events!

Check out some of our events and if you’re a female, get stoked! Dudes, we still love you and you’re more than welcome to the Vintage Ski Party!!!

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Filed under Biking, Skiing, Tahoe

Riding Bikes Fast Down Mountains

I grew up in Michigan and started riding mountain bikes in high school at the local state park. By college, I was known as a pretty good rider in Michigan, but when I moved to Tahoe with my hard tail Trek 7000, I was immediately shocked by the difficulty of the trails and endless climbs. 6+ years later, those same rides, while still challenging, are my daily rides on a full suspension cross-country bike. Last week, my friend Nils invited me to ride mountain bikes at Northstar Ski Resort, so I called my friend Allison who was out of commission (due to riding bikes at Northstar – ok, racing bikes) and borrowed all of her downhill gear. The huge bike and full pads gave me confidence to ride Northstar’s most difficult trails, however, I was pretty scared the whole time! Mountain biking is scary! The bike just seemed huge and my feet were not staying on the flat pedals. Yes… Mountain bike gaper!

We rode most of the day and I was suprisingly tired at the end of it all – my legs were even sore the next two days from keep active legs the entire time. A week later, I rode my regular XC bike on the Tyrolean Downhill in Incline Village after work and crushed it! I mean, I was flying, hitting jumps, and cruising through the turns! The downhill biking really paid off. Turns out Nils was right – a day on a downhill bike will really help your skills!

Near the end of day 1 and getting it dialed on a downhill bike.

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Another Glorious Tahoe Summer

When you ask people about Tahoe, it is often said “they came for the winter, but stayed for the summer.” There are arguably better ski destinations in North America, but I’ve never heard anyone claim that their ski town is better than Tahoe in the summer. This past weekend, I had a super fun multi-sport day wakesurfing with my friends Mark and Julie and then rallying an all-female crew to ride to “the Bench” – a technical 15 mile out and back mountain bike ride along the scenic Tahoe Rim Trail.

Julie getting “pitted” with Mt. Tallac in the background

Jumping for joy at “the bench” overlook above Lake Tahoe

My very talented friend Adam just released this video summing up his winter and summer visits to his home of Lake Tahoe while he is away at school. Check it out. It will make you wish you grew up here.

I’m continuously grateful to call Lake Tahoe home and will be savoring the last week of summer!

A beautiful sunset on the way home via paddleboard from the Thursday night Summer Lakeview Concert Series.

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Filed under Biking, Tahoe

Mountain Bike Oregon

A few weeks ago, I headed up to Oakridge, Oregon with my friend Lauren to participate in Mountain Bike Oregon (MBO). This was my first organized mountain bike event – basically camp in a park with a bunch of mountain bikers, sign up for rides which are shuttled and guided, drink microbrews at the end of the day, and, oh yeah, you get to demo pretty much any bike you want. I rode $4,000+ carbon mountain bikes all weekend (favorites being the Ibis HD and any bike with X-Fusion Shocks).

The trails in Oakridge are narrow, forested, and smooth. We rode Salmon Creek, ATC (Alpine Tire Clover), Lawler and Hardesty, Moon Point and the Middle Fork, and Larison Rock – we rode a lot – but it was easy when you’re used to climbing 2,000 feet to start rides in Tahoe and all of our shuttles were included in the price! I also got to hang with my old college friend Nikki and her husband Sean!

Though I’m not sure I’d go to MBO again, I’d definitely pay another visit to Oakridge. Next time I’ll bring my own carbon bike, play boat, and fly rod!

Scenic Section of ATC

Rider in the forest

Racing in the Pixie Bike Race – made it to the finals but was taken out from behind! (Photo by Lauren)

Lauren, Bill and I up on the Moon Point Lookout

Cool waterfall on the way home

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Filed under Biking, Travel

Angora Lakes Triathlon Recap

Every year, on the 1st Saturday in August, Tahoe locals get together to compete in the unofficial Annual Angora Lakes Triathlon. The weather is always perfect and Angora Lakes is the perfect temperature for swimming. The route is always the same, a scenic 6 mile bike ride from Kiva Beach up Angora Ridge Road to the Angora Lakes parking lot, followed by a steep mile run up to Angora Lakes, where we then jump into the lake just as we’re getting too hot, and swim across to a 20 foot cliff, jumping off, and then do it all over again on the way back. Except that it is WAY easier since it is downhill!

The climb is a lung buster, but the meadows filled with wildflowers and flanked with aspens and stunning vistas can make you forget about your aching legs and rapid heartbeat. We call it a race, because it’s pretty fun to compete against your friends… but the only reward is pride and the only goal is fun. Mission accomplished again. We’re even thinking of more “fake” triathlons we can do in Lake Tahoe. We’ve decided the opportunities are endless.

Serious competitors showing off their race “markings”… a symbol of their choice.(Photo by Gretchen)

Rachel having fun as she starts the run to Angora Lakes. (Photo by Will)

Two time champion Lauren Lindley looking strong as she runs back to her bike for the final section. (Photo by Will)

Meghan (author) and Sveta neck and neck as they head to the final section.(Photo by Will)

The swim venue. (Photo by Gretchen)

Friends Raina and Jenny pose after a successful swim across Angora Lakes. (Photo by Gretchen)

Video recap of the race!


Filed under Biking, Uncategorized

2nd Annual Angora Lakes Triathlon Results

Woah, that was fun! The Angora Lakes Triathlon was just like I remembered it. Racing with friends up to the lake, swimming across, jumping off a 20′ cliff, and swimming back, and racing back to the beach is a great way to spend a Tahoe summer morning. We tripled our participation this year too! Photos and video to come, but in the meantime, here are the “official” results.

Women’s Division

1. Lauren Lindley – 1:15.45

2. Adrianne Gass – 1:22.40

3. Meghan Kelly – 1:26.55

4. Sveta Yegorova – 1:30.13

5. Judy Weber – 1:52.23

6. Fran Lord – 1:58.39

7. Karen Fink – 2:03.43

8. Rachel Sigman – 2:05.40

9. Jenny Hatch – 2:12.20

9 Raina Patrocinio – 2:12.20

Men’s Division

1. Shawn Butler – 2:00.34

Lauren repeats as the champion. We need to get a trophy! Jenny Hatch wins the new mom division with a 5 month old baby! Oh yeah and a HUGE thanks to our volunteers Gretchen, Will, Pat, and Buddy! Great racing everyone!!!


Filed under Biking, Uncategorized

Angora Lakes Triathlon THIS Saturday!!!

The 2nd Annual Angora Lakes Triathlon is this Saturday, August 4th. The course is set.  Check it out here!  Be at Kiva Beach by 10 AM to race!  The race starts at 10:30 AM sharp!

Here is the course map:

We still need volunteers to be at the start and finish, man the 1st transition, take photos, and be swim safety in a boat or on a paddleboard on the lake.  Contact me if you are interested!

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