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Death Ride Set Take Over Alpine County This Weekend

Written by Charlie Pankey

Alpine County CA – Just as the summer heat finally breaks through our long winter the single hardest cycling event in the Sierra The Death Ride invades the quiet spaces of Alpine County, Markleville and the various scenic byways known as the California Alps Saturday July 13, 2019.

An annual tradition for hundreds of riders, the Death Ride has long been known for its challenging 15,000 feet of vertical climbing. Recognized as one of the premier cycling events in the West, the Alpine County Chamber of Commerce invites you to participate in the Tour of the California Alps – Death Ride®, while enjoying the magnificent scenery and warm hospitality of Alpine County!

As an avid explorer of the Sierra I run in to these riders annually as I head into the mountains to hike and explore. I often wonder what compels them to tackle this feat. The five pass ride includes 129 miles and 15,000+ feet of lung busting climbing. The infamous five pass course includes:
• Monitor Pass (Highway 89) 8,314 feet
• Ebbetts Pass (Highway 4) 8,730 feet
• Carson Pass (Highway 88) 8,580 feet

A monstrous physical feet that would be the equivalent of hiking Half dome from the Yosemite Valley Floor 3 time sin the same day. (most have difficulty doing it once in a day.)

Start & Cut-Off Time:

Generally, the start-time is 5:00am or at daylight. Starting before sunrise requires visible lighting in front and back of bike and rider. If starting early bring your own food and water as rest stops will not be open until posted times. Riders not planning on completing all passes please start a little later to avoid congestion. All riders must be off the course by 8:00pm.

Road Closures: Day of Event 07/13/19

From 5:00am – 7:00am, the road will be closed to traffic from the Markleeville Courthouse to the junction of Highways 89 & 4. Monitor (Hwy 89) & Ebbetts Pass (Hwy 4) will be closed to vehicular traffic starting at 5:00am. Monitor Pass reopens to vehicular traffic at 12:00pm. Ebbetts Pass reopens to vehicular traffic at 3:00pm. Highway 89 from Woodfords to the Markleeville Courthouse will remain open. Please adhere to posted speed zones and early morning parking crews.

About the author

Charlie Pankey

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