KT5 - Tanzawa-ko loop...

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
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#1
For those in the know, this was also called the "ride that Travis missed" ride - I'm still kicking myself about it ...
Anyway, I haven't finished the map yet, but here are the basics:
9:00 from Hon-Atsugi station.
Down Rte.246 from the to Rte.710, and up over the climb to Tanzawa-ko.
We take Rte.76 back to R246 for a short stretch before jumping onto Rte.147 - up to "Mikuni-toge", and then down to Yamanaka-ko from there.
From Yamanaka-ko, Rte.413 is the only way home - and what a great road!!!

I still have to draw up the map, and I still have to write this thread properly.
But for those who know the loop, and know what I'm talking about, this is it!
For those who aren't sure about the course, but still wish to come along... Please wait for the updates!
This is just a preliminary to let you all know that Saturday, 22nd is a GO!
Travis
 

Deej

Maximum Pace
Oct 13, 2007
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#2
Sounds epic!

Sounds like another round of madness. Count me in! Just wondering, though -- do you think Mikuni will be dry up top? It looks like it's going to be raining before the weekend, and that could spell trouble at that altitude.

Deej
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
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#3
Map is done...

Keeping it simple…

The last time I planned a ride in this area was Decmber 8th last year; check out “Tanzawa Reconnaissance”:
https://tokyocycle.com/bbs/showthread.php?t=571&highlight=tanzawa&page=3

Everyone else made it to that ride except me… I had an “end of year party” the night before, and……… Anyway, no more excuses!

Last time, the plan was to do 2 “uncharted” climbs, and finish at Mikuni-toge, before rolling down to Yamanaka-ko and back via Rte.413.
That ride was very informative however, in letting us know that only the first climb is possible (although the second one also looks great on the map, it is apparently not passable).

Hence, this time let’s try to make it all the way through to “Mikuni-toge”, Yamanaka-ko, and then all the way down Rte.413!
Here's the map:
http://www.mapmyrun.com/run/japan/atsugi-(kanagawa)/549904778

For those who are worried about ice/snow etc… The elevation of “Mikuni-toge” is almost exactly the same as “Kazahari-toge” above Okutama-ko.
Kazahari was clear of ice & snow on our last run – and as Rte.147/730 runs basically east to west, it should catch enough sunlight both morning & afternoon to keep the road fresh (snow-free) – as well as it being often used!
ie. Road condition shouldn’t be a problem.

Times;
Roll-out from Hon-Atsugi at 9:00.
Lunch at Yamanaka-ko around 13:00.
Hit Rte.413 when ready, and ride home from there!
*Note: The above map only shows the course back as far as “Hashimoto” – I’m assuming everyone can find their respective ways home from there.

Finally, sorry about the short notice! - This Saturday, March 22nd!
If you think you can make it, by all means, please…
See you there!
Travis

P.S. >Thomas: I promise I’ll ride all the way home with you this time. T
>Deej: Thanks for your enthusiasm! Look forward to seeing you then. T
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#4
As always, looks like a great route Travis--please sign me up.

Will drive in from Chiba and be at Hon-Atsugi at 9 AM.

One note: I'll have to break off a little early and close the loop to Atsugi using the 64 or 412--which route do you think is more pleasant? Will anyone else need to do the same?

(When I first came to Japan many years ago, I used to live in Hadano and work in Hon-Atsugi. Haven't been back in ages, so this'll be a very natsukashii visit, as they say here.)
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
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#7
Yeah Baby!

Sounds like madness! So count me in if the weather is good.

Phil, this is my backyard and I'll be heading back to Atsugi also. I'll be going past Miyagase on R64 which is a great road for high speed pursuits. You're welcome to join me if that suits your plan.
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#8
Phil, this is my backyard and I'll be heading back to Atsugi also. I'll be going past Miyagase on R64 which is a great road for high speed pursuits. You're welcome to join me if that suits your plan.
Sounds perfect Mike, thanks. I was just checking my maps and R64 past the lake was looking like the nicer option--even better with company!

See you (and everyone) on Saturday--weather man says sunny w/ clouds...
 

baustin

Warming-Up
Jan 30, 2008
67
0
0
tokyo
#10
More excuses

Hi Travis. Would love to join you guys but have a prior engagement this Saturday. Looking forward to the next outing. Ben
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
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#11
looking good...

9am roll-out from Hon-Atsugi station, which means please be a little bit earlier to stow your stuff, and fill up the water bottles, etc.

>Deej: Round 2, eh!?:D
>Phil: Glad you can make it - BTW, Rte.64 rocks! Ask Mike tomorrow!
TrufflesEater: Hope you can find your way to the station O.K.
>Mike: Really glad you saw this one and decided to come out of hibernation early - I thought we'd all have to come around and start bangin' on the front of your cave to get you up for this ride;)
>Lee (Richy152): It'll be pleasure to ride with you again! T

>Pucci, Ben (baustin): We'll be thinking of you (how we'll envy you halfway up...)
Next time, eh! T

>Thomas, Philip, Christoph: I think everyone just assumes you'll all be there...
I hope you are OK for this one.

See you all at the station:bike:
Travis
 

Deej

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Oct 13, 2007
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#12
Not in fighting form!

Man, I'll be lucky if I can even keep up on the flats. I'm on antibiotics for some malaise that the doc says came from the bug bites I got on my legs on KT4! I don't know if that's the cause or not, but I do feel somewhat lightheaded and have a slight fever (37 C). I swear, for the past couple months, it's been one health issue after the next, and it seems like every other word that comes out of my mouth is something in defense of my less-than-stellar form.

But I'm going to hop on the bike tomorrow and see what happens. The last time I felt cruddy before a ride was on the Hilly Boso trip, and my legs were great then, so maybe I'll be fine.

Pre-emptively,
Deej
 

Mike

Maximum Pace
Sep 24, 2007
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#13
I'm out guys!

Can't believe it! I came down with a stomach virus this morning and have been in the toilet most of the day. Can't hold any foods down, although I'm gonna try some soup again. Even if I'm feeling better tomorrow i should really stay in my cave. I was really looking 4ward to this one.

Sorry Travis.
 
#14
room for possibly one more ?

Well after my chance encounter with some of you guys a couple weekends ago I thought I might join again if you don't mind. I've now got a bike that weights less than my own body-weight and a pair of SPD shoes that don't bend at right-angles. If the tuning & adjustment of my bike & new shoes gets in the way I'll let you lot go ahead (as, inevitably, it is destined) but I thought I might join for at least the first bit anyway...

(Oh, I'm not good at these early morning things so if I'm not there at leaving time please go ahead ...)

Cheers --
Steve
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
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#15
Will be a pleasure!

Well after my chance encounter with some of you guys a couple weekends ago I thought I might join again if you don't mind. I've now got a bike that weights less than my own body-weight and a pair of SPD shoes that don't bend at right-angles. If the tuning & adjustment of my bike & new shoes gets in the way I'll let you lot go ahead (as, inevitably, it is destined) but I thought I might join for at least the first bit anyway...

(Oh, I'm not good at these early morning things so if I'm not there at leaving time please go ahead ...)

Cheers --
Steve
Looking forward to seeing your new bike, Steve!
Sounds awesome! T
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#16
Thank you everyone . . .

My sincere thanks to everyone for your support this evening. Steve and Dave, thank you mediating events. I got home in one piece (more than can be said for my bike).

Regarding the accident: I would appreciate it if you do NOT post any public comments / opinions about the accident until I have concluded negotiations with the insurance company. By all means PM me. Cheers Philip.

As for the ride, I enjoyed today immensely. Those climbs were something else :D The weather perfect :cool: and great riding partners! (good to see Phil west side).

Special thanks to Travis for organizing.

Cheers,

Philip
 

WhiteGiant

Maximum Pace
Nov 4, 2006
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#17
Full report!

We all get songs stuck in our heads on long rides. The song that came to mind before we’d even set out was U2’s “Beautiful Day” – The weather was spectacular!
The eight of us; Thomas, Christoph, Philip, David, Phil, Steve, Lee & Travis (me) were all at Hon-Atsugi station around 8:40. We ate, filled up our bottles and used the facilities at “Lawson” before finally rolling out at about 9:10.

The ride down Rte.246 was fairly quick, and we arrived at the Rte.710 turn-off around 10:00 where we had more to eat, and chatted before our first climb.
We stopped to re-group at the bridge just in front of a gate that we had to go around, about 4km from the top – Those last 4km though, were just a small taste of what was to come – steep-ish in quite a few places.
Once at the top, we stopped again to admire the view (probably a little longer than necessary), and after we’d rolled down for a kilometre or so, it started going up again!!! Did it slip someone’s (no names!) mind to tell us this?
Anyway, just as we passed over the "second" top, Phil punctured!
We were confident that he had it under control, so we headed down to Tanzawa-ko lakeside and waited.

It was already 12:30 (way behind schedule) and we still had the major climb to go.
Finally, Phil, Lee, Steve and David arrived down at the lake, and after a bit more air was put in Phil’s tyre we set off again down Rte.76.
It’s a short 4-5km roll down R76 until we hit Rte.246 again; heading west for 1km to a tunnel, and just under 2km from there we found our turn-off…
And a 7-11, followed by Rte.147!

(*Note: For anyone who wants to try this run along Rte.147, you can’t get onto it from the main road – 246; you have to take the left-hand road split at “Kido – 生土” or “Shibado – 芝土”, that runs parallel to [just south of] Rte.246 and goes through a small town first for about 2km, and then past the 7-11 on the right-hand side, turn right just before a small river.)
Christoph showed that he also has excellent navigational/map-reading skills in finding the turn-off first.

Rte.147Say it with reverence!
We’ve all been on “steep” climbs, but they’re usually short.
We’ve all been on “long” climbs, but they’re usually not so steep.
“147” is both STEEP & LONG! ……..Stupid-steep! Stupid-long!
To say, “I was beaten by my friend, but he was much better than me on the day…” is no big deal – it happens all the time.
To say, “That mountain beat me!” is something else. It really hurts!

Once we were all at the top, the most frequently used adjective to describe it was, “UNRELENTING”!
I was doubled-over from pain in my whole abdomen, my legs cramped 3 times just trying to sit on the grass, and I had to break my promise to Thomas about riding back to Tokyo together – I just couldn’t… The mountain had me beaten! It broke me!
For the record; Philip was first to the top, followed closely by Thomas, and then distantly (15 mins.) ……..my dying self.
*Note: Christoph punctured about halfway up, and knowing that he was “out of the race” between Thomas & Philip, took his time at the back looking after us stragglers.

After everyone was rested, we rolled down to another 7-11 by “Yamanaka-ko” lakeside. The spectacular views of Mt. Fuji were completely masked by everyone’s fatigue.
By then, it was close to 4:00, and we only had about 2 hours of daylight left to get back down Rte.413. Christoph lead us all out in style – The “Train-Driver”!
Needless to say, the trip down was “quick”! Almost completely downhill for over 30km, and the only things slowing us down were the cars (Nice little chuckle from Phil after some overtaking exploits…)

Once we reached the Rte.64 turn-off, Phil & I headed towards Hon-Atsugi, while everyone else rode towards Hashimoto.
>To Phil, a personal apology: Phil, I knew that you were definitely able to get back to Atsugi by yourself, but my legs were absolutely shot, and I used you as an excuse to shorten my agony. Thanks for your patience! T

Phil & I headed down to “Miyagase-ko” lake, and I had to stop for something to eat. By the time we’d rolled around the lake and onto the downhill section, it was quite dark, and a little frightening in a few places. But we finally arrived at our original starting point (Atsugi) a little before 7:00pm.
After we said goodbye, Phil went to his car, and I jumped on the train home.

-------------------------------------------

Apparently, within the last six riders who were heading towards Hashimoto, there was a (not so small) incident.
I wasn’t there, so I can’t (and won’t) comment, except to say;
Regarding the accident: I would appreciate it if you do NOT post any public comments / opinions about the accident until I have concluded negotiations with the insurance company. By all means PM me. Cheers Philip.

Philip
>To those who were there: Can we respect Philip’s wishes that nothing (comments, opinions, etc.) be posted yet, please?
>To those not involved: Can we put aside any curiosity and inquiries, and not ask too many questions? At least until Philip has recuperated, and all the requisite details have been finalized.
Then, once everything is settled we can hear all about it from Philip, himself.

-------------------------------------------

Back to the ride;
We all have our list of difficult “TOGE”…
Kazahari, Yabitsu, Matsuhime, Tsuru, Wada, Karibazaka, Nokogiri-yama, Imagawa, Yanagisawa, etc….
I would hereby like to vote on the toughest ever, and my choice after last weekend’s ride has to go to “Mikuni-toge” via Rte.147.
>TOM, Terry: maybe you guys know some tougher ones… Please let us know!

All up, in hindsight of what "147" is all about, I probably would have skipped the first climb all together and started the ride a lot closer - "Suruga-Oyama" station perhaps, and then complete the loop via Rte.138 - maybe next time!

Travis

P.S. Thomas mailed me to say that apart from Philip's incident, everyone got home OK!
P.P.S Philip PM'ed to say that despite a few bruises, he IS all right. Unfortunately, his bike "Mr.G" is a write-off:eek:uch:
 

Phil

Maximum Pace
#18
A bit hilly, that was...

Excellent report as always Travis.

First off, I was sorry to read about the crash when I checked the forum the next morning. Philip, I really hope you get everything sorted and are back on the bike very soon.

Apart from that obvious downer, it was a brilliant day of riding, well, well worth the trip out to the west side; great weather, absolutely stunning scenery (I'll never forget that view across Lake Yamanaka to the broad ash-grey flanks of Fuji), and, most important, unrivalled company. ...But that hill!

Good grief, what a climb it was. Words cannot express the sheer, brutal, bloody-minded, unrelenting, never-ending-ness of the darn thing. Defeated, I was, by cramps and exhaustion. I admit that I had to walk most of the last 3kms...

Apologies for the puncture which slowed us down earlier in the day. Unlike Christoph, I didn't have the manners to (a) puncture on an uphill and then (b) make up the time and beat half of us to the top(!)

Travis > Thanks as always for the planning, for the pulls up the hills (at least until my inevitable collapse), and for the company back on route 64. It was seriously very welcome, especially when the dark closed in on those roads through the valleys.

Many thanks to Dave, Steve, and Lee for hanging back and waiting while I sorted the flat, and to Christoph and Thomas for the wild, high-speed sprints back along 413.

Lee, Steve > It was great to meet both of you! Looking forward to joining you guys for many more rides in the future.

Philip > As always, a genuine pleasure--looking forward to our next ride!
 

Philip

Speeding Up
Feb 15, 2007
765
7
38
Setagaya
#19
Thanks Travis . . .

Your report captures the essence of the days ride so well. The 'unrelenting climb' up Mikuni-toge is unquestionably the hardest climb I have done. It was a great day and I am looking forward to going back :confused:

Thomas was in great form all day. He has become a very powerful cyclist :pray: If Thomas had not suffered painful muscle cramp he would have been at the top of Mikumi-toge a long time before I arrived.

Thanks to everyone for your company.

Cheers,

Philip
 

Deej

Maximum Pace
Oct 13, 2007
1,018
149
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#20
Wish I could've been there

Excellent report, Travis. I really appreciate your follow-ups.

Extremely disappointed I could not join you guys. The frustrating thing is, I was feeling well enough by Saturday afternoon to hop on my bike and do hill intervals. If only my illness had come one day sooner...

Yeah, Mikuni is a killer. Having to pass over that on my Shizuoka-Tokyo trip was a real challenge. I remember climbing higher and higher, with the gradient getting outlandishly steep, and thinking, "You gotta be kidding me."

After that ride, I pledged to return to the mountain in the spring to seek my revenge. But I don't think anyone can "beat" Mikuni; it merely allows people to survive it.

Deej