Hilly Boso - Feb 16th

Phil

Maximum Pace
#1
So, we are officially on for the Hilly Boso, an up-and-down back roads run down the spine of Boso peninsula. It should make a good opening salvo for the Tour de Kusatsu training season.

Travis has drawn the detailed map, incorporating AlanW's pioneering efforts from last year:

http://www.mapmyrun.com/run/japan/chiba/115035171

Starting at Chiba-eki, Route 20 will get us out of the city, and then a right at Honda (誉田) station takes us into the rural roads south. We'll cross Takataki Lake and turn onto 81, which follows the Yoro River into the Yoro Gorge and to Awamata Falls (栗又, not "Kurimata" which is what I called them earlier). After that it's some wilderness riding into the hills along 178, and then a number of loops on some real back roads weaving in and around the lakes of Kimitsu.

It's a fairly challenging route, but there are lots of loops in the southern end, so if we start to run out of time or energy, it will be easy enough to cut some out--as a last resort only, of course!

Not sure what the snow and ice conditions will be like; I rode part of the way down today and there was snow at the sides of the roads in the wooded areas, but the roads were generally clear--just a few ice patches on some of the less-travelled routes. I don't think we'll run into serious difficulties until we get down south of the waterfall and onto the back roads there; it all depends on what happens this weekend and next week.

Probably best to have two main meeting points:

Chiba Station
This is the easy-to-find option. From here you'd go straight out of the city along Rte 20 to Honda.

Honda Station
If you're coming on the train you can also change at Chiba and get off here instead, skipping 12 km of city riding.
Philip > By car, Honda is only a couple of kms from the Chiba-Togane highway, and there is a 500 yen parking lot by the station. Might be a better option than driving into downtown Chiba?

As for time, the earlier the better. These are all rural roads with zero street lighting, so we should try to aim to be back at Honda no later than 5 PM, I think.
If we could leave Honda by 8 AM or sooner that would be great, but some of you will have an hour or two of travelling before then. What say you all?

Anyway, that's the rough outline. So far confirmed/shown interest:

YellowGiant (co-leader)
Philip
Deej
chazzer
Phil

Looking forward to seeing everyone again!
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
240
93
Kita-Ueno
#2
looking good...

...Slight update, on the "map" point:
AlanW has sent back a report regarding his previous ride in the southern part of the area, and informed us that some of the roads (from the original map) may not be viable!

So far, Phil's course as far as "Kurimata/Awamata-taki" (60km from Chiba) is still sound, and thus far is our first point of call; but where we head from there still needs to be re-assessed.
After checking the map, it looks like we could head directly south (for about 15km) until we hit the southern coast of Chiba-ken - after following the coast-line for short stretch (7-10km) eastwards, we can head back to our original starting-point (Chiba-city) along some different roads.

Alan has also sent a copy of "definitely-traversable" roads in that area, so it's just a matter of putting them all together to make a full loop-course back to Chiba (while also making it interesting, and as traffic-free as possible).
Any preferences, anybody?

Anyway, no matter what, the ride is "GO" for Saturday, February 16th.

Phil & Travis
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#3
Confirmed . . .

Thanks Phil, Travis and Alan,

I will drive to Honda station as you suggest Phil. Christoph thinks he can join us next weekend. Therefore, I will bring Deej, Christoph and myself. We will arrive in time to roll-out from Honda station at 8:00am.

Looking forward to it :cool:

Philip

PS - shall I bring my surf board???
 

AlanW

Maximum Pace
Jan 30, 2007
1,214
435
103
Tokyo
#4
Traffic Free

...Slight update, on the "map" point:
AlanW has sent back a report regarding his previous ride in the southern part of the area, and informed us that some of the roads (from the original map) may not be viable!

So far, Phil's course as far as "Kurimata/Awamata-taki" (60km from Chiba) is still sound, and thus far is our first point of call; but where we head from there still needs to be re-assessed.
After checking the map, it looks like we could head directly south (for about 15km) until we hit the southern coast of Chiba-ken - after following the coast-line for short stretch (7-10km) eastwards, we can head back to our original starting-point (Chiba-city) along some different roads.

Alan has also sent a copy of "definitely-traversable" roads in that area, so it's just a matter of putting them all together to make a full loop-course back to Chiba (while also making it interesting, and as traffic-free as possible).
Any preferences, anybody?

Anyway, no matter what, the ride is "GO" for Saturday, February 16th.

Phil & Travis
For less traffic, avoid the coast road (highway 128) and go through the "interior". There is much less traffic and the roads are more interesting. The coast road is flat.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#5
Agree with Alan about the coastal roads on Boso, the interior roads are much better. However, Travis's 178-82-128-81 is a good option in case the unnumbered road on Alan's map proves impassable.

There is also chance that 178 might not be do-able either; up to the falls it should be fine, but beyond that it gets a bit mountain track-ish, so depending on the weather... If it is un-rideable, we can double-back to 465 and go west on that to loop past some of the lakes in Alan's ride.

Long story short, there are lots of easy-to-follow options once we get down there.

Philip > I'll PM you directions soon-ish. And yes, surf boards are de rigueur in Chiba.

So, adding Christoph to the list, so far we have (not all confirmed yet):

YellowGiant (co-leader)
Philip
Deej
chazzer
Phil
cinelli
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#7
Honda Station

I'm also keen for this one. It's time to blow the cobwebs of the bike and come out of my winter hybernation!

My only concern is the start time. Any chance of pushing it back a little later? I would have to leave home from Yamato at a seriously early time to make it by 8.

If everyone else is keen for 8 though I'll do my best.

Cheers
 

Pucci

Speeding Up
Jul 12, 2006
283
1
38
Yokohama
#8
Sunnier Climes

Damn, I would have loved to do this one. I know the back roads and hills of Chiba very well and there is some great riding there.

Unfortunately, I will be in sunny London that week. The following week, my wife is away and I will have to look after the kids. Looks like no more weekend riding until march.
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
240
93
Kita-Ueno
#9
Map update!

Phil has sent me a partial map of the revised course, and it looks pretty damned good!
There are only a few minor changes to the return-route, including a few extra detours. 95% of the course is known as "definitely-passable"! (Note: there is an alternative course we can choose, if that unknown 5% is not do-able.)
Anyway, I've put them all together, and here's Phil's latest version:
http://www.mapmyrun.com/run/japan/honda---chiba/247240851

As it turns out, from Honda to the coast, it's only about 70km; which means if we roll out from there at 8:30 (at the latest), we'll be looking at the Pacific before midday.
After lunch by the sea, we'll head back via Rte.81 - Which looks wickedly steep just after we head inland.
It's even possible that we'll have time to reconnoiter some of Alan's previous suggestions - we can discuss that as a group, if we find ourselves ahead of schedule.
Really looking forward to this one; The "Chiba to Coast Dash!"
Phil & Travis

P.S. Here's the alternative course, in case we can't get through to the coast via Rte.178 - It works out to be exactly the same distance either way:
http://www.mapmyrun.com/run/japan/chiba/904455813
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#10
Thanks for posting the map Travis! On the Tour de Chiba, we came down the 82 to the coast, and it was very very steep indeed. If the 81 going back is anything like it, we'll have switchbacks o'plenty to negotiate...

One note: bring lots of snacks for the jersey pockets, as combinis are few and far between. We're assuming we'll find a place down on the coast for lunch, but apart from that there'll be long stretches without opportunities to fuel up. Oh, and of course, bring blinkies in case we run late.

Also, unless anyone needs a guide from Chiba station, Honda will be the official rendezvous. We'll stick with 8am for now, but as Travis says we'll wait up for stragglers until 8:30--hopefully that will give everyone a decent chance of making it out there.

Thomas > See you there!
Mike > Great, looking forward to meeting you--hope you can make it at such an early hour!
Pucci > sorry you won't be joining us, but have a good time in London...

So the riders now:
YellowGiant (co-leader)
Philip
Deej
chazzer
cinelli
Thomas
Mike
Phil
 

baustin

Warming-Up
Jan 30, 2008
67
0
0
tokyo
#11
Hi all. Please count me in. Will be my first outing with TCC. Looks like a bit of a baptism of fire.頑張ります! Will go to Honda station by train. First use of my new rinko bukuro too! Ben
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#12
Great course guys . . .

Thanks Phil & Travis,

The course looks interesting and challenging - especially the climb at 75km. In the summer I did a couple of open water swim races in the sea near the half-way point. The waves are fantastic along this coast. Probably a little cold to go swimming this time of year :p

Anyway, Honda station 8:00am - cannot wait :D

Philip
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
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Kita-Ueno
#13
Last minute details!

Hey guys,

>Thomas: I'll be riding out there too!
I can meet you on the way at either; Koiwa - 5:45, or at LaLa-Port (where we turned off for the "Cycle-Mode") at 6:30. From there, we can get to Chiba station a little after 7:00.

>Baustin: Hey Ben! Glad you're up for the ride too (as a fellow Sydney-ite - lots to chat about). Thomas and I will be waiting for anyone (everyone?) coming by train at Chiba station between 7:10-7:20. From there, we can all make it to Honda by 8-ish.

>Mike: How will you be faring with the trains? If you can make it to Chiba by 7:15 or so... you, Thomas, Ben and I can all ride out to Honda together.

>Chazzer: Are you in? Sorry, I didn't see your name in the replies.
Let us know, OK! T

I think that covers everyone so far...
>Philip, Cinelli, Deej: See you guys at Honda, eh!:cool:

>Phil: I reckon you'll know where to be:)

I think that's 9 of us:

Phil
Philip
Christoph
Deej
Chazzer
Thomas
Mike
Travis (me)
Ben (baustin)

I reckon this'll be great!
Travis
 
Jan 14, 2007
2,514
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Noda
japanichiban.com
#14
We'll see. Depends on my son's high school entrance exam results tomorrow...the world revolves around them in case you haven't noticed...

If I come by train I need to board at 6a.m.

Required time 1hour 50min (Taking time 86min)
Distance 63.6 km (Transfer 3)
Total amount of money ¥930 (Fare ¥930 Charge ¥0)
Atago--->Kashiwa--->Funabashi--->Chiba--->Honda

If I come by car is it easy to park near there?
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#15
Hey Pete, there's a coin parking (500 yen all day) on the left side of the 128 just after you turn off the 20 onto the 128. It's pretty spacious so I think there'll be lots of space, especially at that time in the morning. I'm going to drive down early and make sure.

Hope you can make it--I'll PM you the same directions I sent Philip.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#18
Just a quick note on the rendezvous point I forgot to mention:

There are two parking lots on the left after you turn on to 128. The first has a green P and is next to a bank, the second has a blue P and is in front of a former (now closed) supermarket. They're very close to each other so I'm sure we'll find each other anyway, but the second one is cheaper so that's where I'll be :)

(Hey, that's great news Pete. This time of the year must be pretty emotional for quite a lot of families...)
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
1,066
9
58
Kanagawa
#19
I'm out

Sorry guys, but in order to make it that early in the morning from Yamato I would have to get up at a time I don't even want to think about. I reserve those special times for races only. :)
Enjoy!
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
1,192
240
93
Kita-Ueno
#20
Getting there...

I think everyone's prepared so far, but just making sure.

>Mike: Sorry to hear that you won't be joining us. I realize the start-time is quite early for you, given how far you'd have to come - Definitely next time, eh! T

>Ben, Charles: From your replies, can I gather that you both will be heading straight to "Honda" station by train, and NOT "Chiba"? In that case, Thomas & I will have no reason to stop there (Chiba) to pick anyone up, so we'll just continue riding straight to Honda.

>Thomas: Here's the map of where to be:
http://www.mapmyrun.com/run/japan/la-la-port/26126079
As you approach LaLa-Port on Rte.357, you'll see a very tall building on the left (Pink & light-grey in color, over 20-floors, and visible from about 2km out); Go past that building to the next intersection (R8, to the left - R15, to the right). I'll meet you on that corner at 6:30. From there, it's just under 30km to Honda. See you there! T

>Philip, Christoph, Dave: I'm assuming the three of you have been in contact to arrange meeting times/places etc. See you all at Honda, eh!

>Pete (Edogawakikkoman): How are you going with arranging the drive out? I hope you managed to clear it with the family... BTW, "Congratulations" to your son:)
Hope to see you there!

>Phil: What can I say? Thanks for suggesting this ride, and for all your help putting the maps together! Looks like we'll have great weather too!

See you all at 8:00.
Travis