He Who Dares

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#1
Weather pending (the forecast is getting better by the minute) I''m hoping to do the Yanagagisawa loop this Saturday. This is a ride of insane climbing, breathtaking descents and pain guaranteed. Only the brave and reasonably paced need apply (sorry we just won't have time to wait around)

Meet at Uenohara station at 8am (it's early but it has to be for this ride)

Tsuru Toge
Yanagisawa Toge
Kamihikaawa Toge
Sasago Toge
Returning via R20 and then climbing up over Uenohara.

160km, 4000m of climbing. Bring all your food as there aren't ANY conbini's!
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#2
Mike you know I would be up for this but I seriously need to let my legs recover as Im racing next weekend.... might do a loop up and are Miyagase on Sunday.... or a long flat ride and spin out.
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#4
Hi Mike,
It is still not clear for me - I will let you know later this evening.
Come on Sergey, the weather is gonna be great tomorrow. Sunny marks from 6am according yahoo on their hour by hour report:D I don't fancy doing this ride solo again:eek:uch:
 

kpykc

Speeding Up
Jun 13, 2007
804
4
38
38
Tokyo
#5
I am clear to ride until 5pm tmr, but I am affraid that I won't make it home in time with this monster ride and ~3 hours on the trains.

I'll head for a shorter/close-to-home Kazahari-Kobu-Wada or Travis' loop from Itsukaichi st. this time

Any chance you could postpone it?
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#6
I am clear to ride until 5pm tmr, but I am affraid that I won't make it home in time with this monster ride and ~3 hours on the trains.

I'll head for a shorter/close-to-home Kazahari-Kobu-Wada or Travis' loop from Itsukaichi st. this time

Any chance you could postpone it?
OK Sergey, no worries. If the weathers good and I'm up for it I'll try it on my own again:( Tom, you're not up for this one are you? Ludwig?
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#7
Ok, that's a good challenge. Will you be really ready to roll at 8am? It takes me close to three hours to cycle to Uenohara, so a slighly later start would help. Also, could you PM me your mobile phone number/e-mail so I can contact you in case I'm bailing out or there is trouble?

I may bail out after Sasago because I'm not too keen on route 20 and surely won't have the power to do Akiyama for the return.

BTW, there are plenty of food options on the way: 7-11 in Uenohara at branch-off to route 30 (would suggest we meet there rather than at the station), shop in Kosuge, Soba shop on top of Yanagisawa, houtou shop at the branch-off to Kaminikkawa, 7-11 in Kaiyamato, and then of course plenty of conbinis on route 20.
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#8
Ok, that's a good challenge. Will you be really ready to roll at 8am? It takes me close to three hours to cycle to Uenohara, so a slighly later start would help. Also, could you PM me your mobile phone number/e-mail so I can contact you in case I'm bailing out or there is trouble?

I may bail out after Sasago because I'm not too keen on route 20 and surely won't have the power to do Akiyama for the return.

BTW, there are plenty of food options on the way: 7-11 in Uenohara at branch-off to route 30 (would suggest we meet there rather than at the station), shop in Kosuge, Soba shop on top of Yanagisawa, houtou shop at the branch-off to Kaminikkawa, 7-11 in Kaiyamato, and then of course plenty of conbinis on route 20.
Ludwig, great to have some company for this one. Do you mean R33/R20 or R30/R20? I'm happy to meet at whichever there is a 7-11. Last time I did this ride I left Uenohara at 9am and remember being in a race with the sunset all day. I know the days are longer now, but I was hoping for a very early start. How does 8.30 sound? It'll also take me 3 hours to ride there too so I'll leave my place at 5.30. I'd also like to ride home so hopefully this will give me enough time to do so. I'll PM you my number could you do the same:D

Tom, you biting at all?
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#9
Tom is always sleeping early. No chance to catch him any more...

So if you are riding in too, maybe we can meet earlier on the way. I ride out on the Tamagawa and Asakawa, then over Otarumi. But I can also do One-kan - Hashimoto - Tsuiko, or even Tsurukawa - Machida - Hashimoto - Tsuiko.

If we meet at the 7-11 in Uenohara, it is on route 20, between the route 30 and 33 turn-offs, but closer to 33 than 30. Anyhow, there is only one and it is hard to miss it.

8:30am there or an earlier time earlier on the way are fine.

It's a 160km round-trip from Uenohara, so even if we go relaxed with breaks at an average of 20km/h, we are back by 16:30 - two hours before it starts getting darkish. Plenty of time!!
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#10
Tom is always sleeping early. No chance to catch him any more...

So if you are riding in too, maybe we can meet earlier on the way. I ride out on the Tamagawa and Asakawa, then over Otarumi. But I can also do One-kan - Hashimoto - Tsuiko, or even Tsurukawa - Machida - Hashimoto - Tsuiko.

If we meet at the 7-11 in Uenohara, it is on route 20, between the route 30 and 33 turn-offs, but closer to 33 than 30. Anyhow, there is only one and it is hard to miss it.

8:30am there or an earlier time earlier on the way are fine.

It's a 160km round-trip from Uenohara, so even if we go relaxed with breaks at an average of 20km/h, we are back by 16:30 - two hours before it starts getting darkish. Plenty of time!!
Ludwig, theonly way out there for me is the same way we went the other day from Hon Atsugi - Miyagase. If you can locate a better point to meet let me know. I'll check here in the morning, otherwise see you at the 7-11 in uenohara tomorrow. Night night:bike:
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#11
Let's stick with your plan. The alternative for you would be to take Machida Kaido to Hashimoto and for us to meet there. But better not to experiment if you are not sure of the way.
 

kpykc

Speeding Up
Jun 13, 2007
804
4
38
38
Tokyo
#12
I wonder how it went for you guys?

I headed to Kazahari rindo, but it was closed again because of some slide, which toppled an electic pole over, blocking the road, so I turned back and did Kobu-Wada. The heat was really punishing in the mountains today and I could still feel the Thursday's double Yabitsu in my legs :eek:uch:
 
#13
Tom is always sleeping early. No chance to catch him any more...
You got that one right Ludwig :). I need my sleep more than in my younger days. Slept like a log after yesterday's long ride and got up at 5:15 this morning for another 200km+ ride. 400km in two days...tomorrow I'm taking a rest :D

Hope your ride went fine. The air was very crisp in the early hours this morning...almost feeling like Europe.
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#14
You got that one right Ludwig :). I need my sleep more than in my younger days. Slept like a log after yesterday's long ride and got up at 5:15 this morning for another 200km+ ride. 400km in two days...tomorrow I'm taking a rest :D

Hope your ride went fine. The air was very crisp in the early hours this morning...almost feeling like Europe.
Tom you are a machine and to answer your and Sergey's question I called off the ride. Once again I was plagued by sleep problems. I know this sounds really soft, but I didn't sleep at all, not even for 1 second! This has happened twice in the last week, once due to terrible tooth pain which caused me to see the dentist, and then last night for no apparent reason. I decided it'd be best not to tackle such a gruelling ride in that condition and PM'd Ludwig to let him know at 4.30am.

I managed to get a bit of sleep by around 6am and then headed off for a solo Tour de Christoph around 11am, 160km. It wasa lovely ride but I was very disappointed and felt bad for Ludwig. I wonder why I couldn't sleep? Perhaps the adrenalin from the anticipation was running through my veins. Next time I'm gonna hit the sack earlier and try some sleeping tablets. All in all very very disappointing:mad:
 
#15
Mike, that was a real bummer. I've experienced something similar before when I was drinking jasmine tea before I went to bed...that night, I kept turning around and failed to catch any sleep at all...it is a terrible feeling. Were you perhaps on jasmine tea ;) last evening?


Tom you are a machine and to answer your and Sergey's question I called off the ride. Once again I was plagued by sleep problems. I know this sounds really soft, but I didn't sleep at all, not even for 1 second! This has happened twice in the last week, once due to terrible tooth pain which caused me to see the dentist, and then last night for no apparent reason. I decided it'd be best not to tackle such a gruelling ride in that condition and PM'd Ludwig to let him know at 4.30am.

I managed to get a bit of sleep by around 6am and then headed off for a solo Tour de Christoph around 11am, 160km. It wasa lovely ride but I was very disappointed and felt bad for Ludwig. I wonder why I couldn't sleep? Perhaps the adrenalin from the anticipation was running through my veins. Next time I'm gonna hit the sack earlier and try some sleeping tablets. All in all very very disappointing:mad:
 

kpykc

Speeding Up
Jun 13, 2007
804
4
38
38
Tokyo
#16
It's a pity you were forced to change plans, Mike.

This lack of sleep problem sounds familiar. Not last night, but once in a while I am also having hard times to fall asleep - sometimes after, sometimes before a ride. I usually manage to catch some after 4am, feels bad, but I am pretty sure 2-4 hours is enough, if it's not like this everyday
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#17
It's a pity you were forced to change plans, Mike.

This lack of sleep problem sounds familiar. Not last night, but once in a while I am also having hard times to fall asleep - sometimes after, sometimes before a ride. I usually manage to catch some after 4am, feels bad, but I am pretty sure 2-4 hours is enough, if it's not like this everyday
Sergey, yeah I can also usually get away with 2-3 hours no probs but last night it was zero:mad: Tom, I didn't have any jasmine tea but did have quite a few after dinner mints and I'm pretty sure this was the culprit. I hadn't had any in years and got a bit carried away. They are just too damned tasty. Pretty sure the weather as Sergey suggested is playing a factor here too:confused:
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#18
Sorry to miss you Mike.

At least you made sure I got up at 4:30am (with four hours sleep, but that was sufficient as I had a lot more the night before), which gave me some extra time to get urgent work e-mails out of the way before heading out still at 6am.

The weather was so gorgeous, this was the day to try something special. There are many (new - of course!) rides I still want to do, but the slight uncertainty about whether the weather would hold into the late afternoon made me go for something where I could change my plans easily and return early by train. I also wasn't quite sure how I would hold up after so much hammering on Thursday - I actually felt a slight muscle ache which is very rare for me, but I also knew that my muscles never are my weak point, so was more curious what my heart would say.

So I headed out for Yanagisawa Toge, going up the Okutama valley. Traffic was still fine in these early hours, except for a group of maybe 15 Porsche drivers some of whom enjoyed being as noisy as they possibly could, especially in tunnels, almost blasting off my ears. Another cyclist who I overtook in one of these Porsche tunnels got really scared and decided to slow down.

Further up on the ascent to Yanagisawa, I was disgusted to find that another completely useless tunnel is being dug, right in front of the other useless tunnel that still hasn't opened. Unbelievable waste of our money, even in these times.

The heat was relatively bearable, thanks to all the water coming down the mountains and still wet surface here and there. I still sweated a lot, but made it up quite quickly.

Beyond Yanagisawa Toge, I had the choice of climbing up to Kaminikkawa and then exploring some paved rindos on the way down, or well - going for Odarumi. The skies still looked pretty OK, so I went for Odarumi - which involves climbing 2,000m straight up from Enzan to 2,360m.

Thiis time I opted for route 208 to climb up - last year I had done route 210. 208 is much longer and initially not so steep - unlike 210 which initially is crazily steep when one needs it least, i.e. when still in the heat island of Enzan.

Enzan was crazily hot today as well. Actually hotter than when I did Odarumi exactly one year minus one day ago. 35 degrees today vs 31 back then. Despite the more moderate incline through the fruit plantations, I was sweating insane amounts of water. Route 208 has the benefit of having drinks machines up to an altitude of about 1,000m, which I took advantage of twice, putting one cold PET bottle into back part of my pants for cooling. Unfortunately this would turn out to be an idea less good than it seemed initially.

208 was officially closed to traffic due to road works at about 1,100m - the entire road is being made wider because the already wide 210 is apparently not meant for traffic going up to Odarumi... Only it works perfectly when 208 is closed. The construction site was as usual no problem to pass - the workers saw me, but did not even bother to stop me.

After more sweating, I finally reached the first pass, Yakiyama Toge. Taking a quick rest, I noticed that my bike bag was no longer in my back pocket. Oh no - the bottle stuffed into my pants must have pushed it out. What do? Turn back and search for it, giving up Odarumi? No way. As the road I had just taken was closed to traffic, the bag would stay where I dropped it for a few hours, or so I reasoned. So on I went to the final climb of 900m.

The temperature had now dropped to a more agreeable 23 degrees, and kept dropping to ultimately 16 degrees (17 last year). Sweating went down to reasonable levels. But the soon I would stop for any reason, literary maybe 50 horseflies would circle and attack me! Strange - I had no memory of these beasts being there last year.

The scenery was as nice as last year, and the final 600m of climbing as gruelling and never ending as last year too. But eventually I made it.

Unlike last year, the hut was open and had plenty of visitors, sitting outside and being occupied by horseflies, unless my presence turned all their attention to me... They couldn't believe I had come all the way from Tokyo. I had a nice warm soba inside, free from horseflies, and a nice chat with another guest who had travelled Germany a lot more than I have ever done.

The descent was cold until I reached the small climb up to Yakiyama Toge, where I started the search for the missing bag. I could not see anything and finally reached the construction site. Had they by any chance seen something that I could have lost? Oh yes, ask the workers further down, they are keeping something! As I approached, they walked up to me with my bike bag in their hands. How lucky!

This detour so far down had restricted my options of not just going back down to Enzan the way I had come. There are many nice rindos that can take you all the way to Kofu - one of which I had followed last year. But given the advanced time climbing up again to Yakiyama Toge was not an option. I looked for one more rindo further down that could have led me to Kofu via Tahara Toge, but it turned out to be unpaved, so only suitable for my cyclocross another day.

At least the beautiful weather and views compensated for rolling back down the same way I had come. Now it was only 25 degrees where it had been 35 on the ascent, and the air felt really nice - like a European summer evening.

All the sweating had left a toll on body odours - I couldn't stand myself any more, and was not happy to board a train in this condition. I detected an onsen in a small town (Makioka), just after crossing route 140. I was running out of cash and had only 611 Yen left... The onsen visit was 500 Yen, the towel 200... I managed to get the towel lent for free. And felt much nicer afterwards, except for having to wear the same clothes again...

With stunning views of the mountains surrounding Enzan and white cumulus appearing in the glowing sun over one or two peaks, I boarded the train back to Tokyo.

What a nice day - any takers next time?

http://www.mapmyfitness.com/route/jp/kanto/704127876711575747

(3,800m of true climbing, over 210km)
 

Nadrew

Cruising
Jul 30, 2009
32
0
16
okubo
www.kokoloo.net
#19
Ludwig,

Sounds like you had a great time. I have been training up, but still have a ways to go as I am rather slow on the climbs. And tend to lose gas as the riding continues. Hoping I will get up to speed by next year. I'd be interested in starting off in the morning with you and seeing how long I can hang. You'd be under no obligation to slow down whatsoever.

Andy
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#20
Andy - you climbed like a champ this weekend! Except for the 'jeez I dont remember this road being THIS steep' sections - we managed to grind out some respectable times. During the whole day - how many riders passed US??? I think we pretty much blew away the Keio Uni guys, several groups of weekend warriors, plus Mr. Cinelli himself (in full Gewurstaburgermeisterwhatever kit). 'Ditchman Rules'