I wish I could say 2021 was a return to normalcy, but there was nothing “normal” about it. Yes, the threat of COVID was less and people started doing more group rides, but that doesn’t mean everything was hunky dory.
One of the early season storms brought a neat opportunity to ride GMR/GRR to the snow. I had encountered snow on the sides of the road before, but never so much that made GRR to Baldy Village impassable. The weather was actually pretty warm the day we rode (60s). Of course, that didn’t mean the roads were going to be clear, especially where GRR gets shady. It was interesting hiking across ice in some sections to get to clear pavement around a few hundred meters away. After a while, It got completely impassable about 4-5 miles from the village. Oh, well…still a cool experience!
On the other end of the weather spectrum, we had an R5 remote ride in Malibu. We had done this in March 2020 right before the pandemic hit. Fast forward to 2021 and we were ready to do it again. The route in 2020 was 90 miles, but just 73 miles this year. Nevertheless, it was still nearly 9,000 ft of climbing. Always fun riding up here this time of year, since things are usually greener. It’s just the drive home through LA that sucks.
March also brough the return of “racing” to the local cycling scene. Majestic Cycling put on the Crystal Lake Royale in March. It was basically an uphill TT to the Crystal Lake Cafe. Riders went off according to their category or age group. I was in the 40+. It was hard to tell what place I ended up. I did set a bunch of PRs for various Strava segments though. There used to be uphill TTs for GMR and Mt. Baldy, and I wish someone would organize them again. They were hard, but a lot fun.
I had been having a good first couple of months on the bike until I ended up crashing in March. You can read all about in one of my earlier posts. Thankfully, I had to recover from broken bones in cycling before, so I knew the drill. I was able to get back on the trainer in less than 2 weeks, but riding outdoors took longer. The good thing about riding the trainer though is that I didn’t lose much conditioning. The other interesting outcome of the crash was entering TTs in the Merckx category, since I couldn’t ride in the aerobars for awhile. That was kind of cool actually and I did OK. Plus, it was just nice to get out and race.
Due to my crash, I also wasn’t able to ride BWR San Diego. I was able to transfer my registration to BWR Utah. That ended up being quite the experience and I also covered that in another post. Oh, I also took the opportunity to visit a few of the National Parks in Utah, while I was there. I had been living here for over 10 years, but had never been to Zion or Bryce National Parks. As usual, I have a separate post about that portion of the trip.
All things I considered, I still racked up a lot of miles in 2021. I always love the Veloviewer end of year infographic…