Tour of California-Day 5, to Clovis

February 19th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

Here we are at 10 am on the top of the hill at the first King of the Hill. This is where the riders get extra points for crossing the summit first.

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Today the skies are clear and the Sierra Nevada mountain’s looks especially beautiful this morning. This stage has the riders going up over 4 mountain passes and they will be put to the test. The climbs aren’t that long, but one tops out at over 3,000 ft elevation.

 

Some of my favorite pics from this spot-

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For now, we have the truck parked, the banners up and the snacks handy. I’ll be promoting http://www.bicycletour.com/ from up here on top the summit…just 2 ½ hours till the riders get here!!!

We will be moving on next to the finish in Clovis and hopefully a spot right on the finish line…..

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Tour of California-Day 4, to Modesto

February 19th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

Another day on the road and yes, more rain!

 

Shout out to Jeff Louder who was in the breakaway pack for the entire day! Jeff is the son of Carol Louder, owner of Macabi Skirt, one of our OutdoorMind clients. It was very exciting to follow him today, knowing how proud Carol must have been!!

 

 

Here is a short breakdown of our day viewing the Tour of California, we had 5 viewing spots today!

 

  1. Caliveras Road climb (that’s Lance in the black/yellow helmet on the left front).

  1. Viewing from the freeway at Sunol and 680
  2. Patterson Pass and Midway Road

 

 

 

  1. Highway 132 and some intersection in the middle of farmland

 

 

 

  1. And, a chance viewing at Carpenter and Kansas Street while running down the street!…no time for photos there! 

All in all another awesome day J

Tour of California-Day 3, to Santa Cruz

February 16th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

 

OK, I can’t really use the same first sentence of yesterday so I’ll change it up a bit…. wet, wet and cold! How’s that?

 

I can’t believe those guys had to hit the road again today in this weather…starting with an 8:30 am crossing of the Golden Gate Bridge! We were on the freeway at the time and that was hard enough….

 

Today’s stage had 2 good climbs and since we had such a great time on a hill before, we thought we’d give it another try. The road this time was very narrow and in the redwoods…very misty, dark and cold…another perfect spot of our friend the easy up. This time the table was turned however as we asked a few guys who seemed to have a pretty good spot staked out if we could join them. First question they had was what did WE have to offer…well, we just pointed to the huge easy-up in the back of the truck and the rest is history!!!

 

 

We had timed our arrival a bit later today and only had to wait about 2 hours for the arrival of the group (yesterday was about 4 hours). Again, the parade of vehicles raced by with updates on the riders, leader and following Peleton. We found out later that Lance T-boned a downed motorcycle and about 15 others had crashed right before this climb. They were all fine and back in the group.

 

They riders wizzed by (looking very cold and tired), the awning came down and everyone ran off to the warmth of their cars! We sped off up the road to try and catch the finish in Santa Cruz (where the sun came out!).

 

 

I’ll add some pictures here then off to the wharf for some seafood, sleep and another day to follow the Tour of California!

 

Tour of California-Day 2, to Santa Rosa

February 16th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

Wet, wet, wet…. that’s all I can say for today. I know we need the rain and all (for California River rafting this summer), but it really stinks to sit out in it all day.

 

Off we went at 7 am to get an early start to the one of the climbs on today’s route, Pope Valley. It really is beautiful there this time of year. After 2 hours, we arrived at a spot we had scouted last month, great off road turnout, very steep slope, and perfect!

 

We were expecting a few other friends and at the last minute decided to make it a tail-gater. With the use of an ‘easy-up’ from our local Breathe California’ friends we started to set up. Another couple we did not know stopped and asked if they could join us so we said yes!

 

 

A few minutes later, the awning was up, water was boiling for hot chocolate and the fans all started arriving. Let’s just say that we were the favorites of the day and the crowd gathered in numbers under our tent! We had a Canadian couple that supplied the wine, cheese and crackers. Another group brought some rope for hanging our Adventure Sports Online banner…everyone had something to contribute to the party! It was also such a great location that the official photographers with the Tour set up shop there as well!

 

If you’ve never been to an event such as this, it is very hard to really describe the excitement that builds as you wait. There is quite an assembly of vehicles that precedes the arrival of the riders. Overhead a helicopter is tracking them, Highway Patrol and Road Marshals, motorcycles…it’s very much like a huge parade. Once the riders FINALLY get to where you have been patiently awaiting their arrival, it’s all over in about 15 seconds!!!!! Crazy…..

 

 

Here are more photos of today’s stage-

 

 

Tour of California-Prologue, Sacramento

February 16th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

Hello to all from cold and cloudy Sacramento!

 

The weather did not keep the crowds, estimated at 70,000 – 75,000, away for Day 1 of the Tour of California and we were right there along with them. Of course the big news is the return of Lance Armstrong, but there are many others to watch.

 

We decided to play it safe and arrive several hours ahead of time and were surprised to find parking, a bonus. After a nice warm breakfast, it was back to our ‘secret’ parking space. Since the wind was blowing and the temperature a bit nippy, we read the newspaper from the cab of our S10 pickup!

 

The course in Sacramento was a 2.4-mile loop around the State Capitol. Many of the riders did some of their warm up practicing the course and we watched Lance and his Astana Team do a few laps.

 

After scouting the course we found the perfect spot to watch the riders coming off a nice turn and stood there for the duration of the race…about 3 ½ hours…man, you really have to be a fan of this sport!

 

Today’s stage winner was Fabian Cancellar with a time of 4:32, amazing…

 

Tomorrow we will be off early to catch a spot on the climb of Pope Valley. Weather calls for a new storm…lots more wind and rain showers. So much for riding in sunny California!

 

I’ll include a bunch of photos of the ride below J

 

Signing off for today…will add images as I get an Internet connection along the way!

  

 

The Tour of California is coming!

February 12th, 2009 Terri Berbena-U'Ren

Hi everyone!

This just in from the Tour of California website:

“The eyes of the cycling world will be firmly focused upon Sacramento come Valentine’s Day when Lance Armstrong will start his first road race on American soil since he returned from retirement. And quite a scintillating show they shall be treated to at the 2009 Amgen Tour of California prologue on the streets of the Golden State’s capitol. Armstrong won seven Tours de France in part due to his extraordinary time trial abilities, but the fast and flat 2.4-mile/3.9 km course is perhaps better suited to a power rider like Olympic gold medalist Fabian Cancellara, who won last year’s prologue. The route passes Sacramento landmarks including the State Capitol, the Capitol Mall and the Tower Bridge and should take about five minutes to complete. With the start and finish lines only blocks apart, spectators will not only enjoy the rare opportunity to see their favorite cyclists ride one at a time against the clock, but they can watch them start and finish.”

Knowing that just a few miles away are some of most famous, fastest and most talented cyclists in the world, is making it hard to focus on my work today! Not all of you are as crazy as I am about cycling, but you will be if you have a chance to stand 2 feet away from one of the riders as they zoom past you at 35 miles per hour.

I plan on taking a road trip next week…..you guessed it! To follow the race for as many of the days as I can manage. Along the way I will be spreading the word about our own website BicycleTour.Com and AdventureSports.Com with psotcards to pass out to the crowds and a nifty banner I had made for our truck.

Each evening I hope to post images and a summary of the day, from my perspective…should be fun :)

Stay tuned

   

 


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