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Montevina + dirt
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We last did Montevina in 2009, but this time we go further: past the gate, onto the dirt, and climb to the top. Fine tune those slick 'cross skills!

RSVP for today's climb after the previous week's climb!

Results are posted!

Christine Holmes photo
Beyond the gate ( Christine Holmes photo )

results?right here!
distance3.86 miles (6.2 km)
climbing1884 ft (574 meters)
where?see below
when?12 Oct 2013
what timeregistration 9:00 to 10:00
climb starts @ 10:10
RSVPcheck back later!
waiverPlease fill one out before the climb!
how?mass start
how much?$10 (free for juniors
and those with volunteer credit)
why?Ask not why; just do!
volunteerssign up!
aerial viewStanford Cycling
Google Earth
weatherWeather Underground

Cover your head, not your ears...

Sorry, folks! Our insurance requires all riders wear helmets during the climb, and we follow the USA Cycling rule against ear buds or other head phones. Rock to tunes before the climb, perhaps, but we need riders to pay attention to what's happening during the climb...


where to meet

We'll meet at the base of Black Road, at the Highway 17 frontage road.


We recommend suggesting parking along Alma Bridge Rd. with a warm-up ride around the reservoir. There are parking lots at the dam and at Miller Point picnic area. There is limited parking at Black and Montevina and at the Bear Creek overcrossing at CA17 (on the reservoir side). Support crew driving up Montevina in autos should be aware that the top of the road before the gate is less friendly than the top of Bohlman. It gets steeper up to the gate. There is only a small turnout/parking area off the road that might be muddy if it's wet. Don't forget to use the parking brake! It's approximately another half-mile from the gate to the finish line, which will need to be walked.

There's room for about 5 cars at the bottom of Black rd.

When you get off 17 and stop at the stop sign, turn right over the overpass, and then right again. There's a dirt area right there that people park in, but I often see them getting tickets so I would not suggest parking there. If you continue on about 1/4 mile there is a large dirt parking area on the left. I have never seen cars there getting ticketed.

riding to the start

You can take the Los Gatos creek trail bike path to lexington dam. This will provide some dirt practice, which will come in handy!

Once you are on the dam, you can go left and take the long way around the reservoir (take a right on Aldercroft Heights and a right on old santa cruz) or you can go towards 17. At 17 you can either ride a singletrack trail or walk against traffic on the shoulder to get to the Bear Creek overpass. If you ride on the shoulder there's a grate that forces a rider into the traffic lane, and where the onramp curves onto the merging lane cars tend to cut the corner which doesn't leave much room for a cyclist, so please walk.

Once you're at Bear Creek, cross the bridge and take a right onto the frontage road where registration and the start will be.

It takes about 30 minutes to ride around the reservoir at a moderate pace. (i.e. when warming up to climb Montevina) If you have time that's a good option. There's even porta-potties along the way.

Another way is to ride up 9, then south on 35 to Black, and down Black. Black is steep and twisty and there's a lot of road debris, especially after the winds we have been having, so be careful if you do this.

The other way is to go up Bolhman/On Orbit, then ride through the open space (on dirt, it's about 1 mile) to the top of Montevina, and come down that way. You get to preview next week's fun.

Riding around the lake is a good warmup. The best way is to ride down the highway 17N on ramp and ride the shoulder for about 1/2 mile until you get to Alma Bridge Rd. There is one storm grate near the offramp that you have to ride into the traffic lane to get around, otherwise the shoulder is ok. At the other side of the lake turn right across Alma Bridge and up the hill to Old Santa Cruz rd, where another right takes you back to the highway 17 overpass.

The loop around the lake is rolling hills, about 8 miles and 800 feet of climbing.

The bottom of Montevina is narrow and twisty. The locals tend to drive fast and use all of the road. Ride all the way to the right.

There's a loose dog near the bottom (small group of houses about 1/4 mile up) that likes to chase cyclists.

You can either

The gate

There's a gate at the top of Montevina which must be crossed to reach the dirt road, which extends approximately 0.5 miles to the top of the climb. Cyclocross skills will come in handy here:



on the dirt


Volunteers make Low-Key tick! Without them, we no longer function. Please sign up for any week in the series using our volunteer form! Thanks!!!

The Low-Key Way

Low-Key is all about a group of friends riding up a hill together. It's like any other informal group ride, except we time you to the top and report the results on our web site. But we have no road closures, no lead vehicle, no follow vehicle. We are traffic, sharing the roads with other traffic, following the laws and courtesy which applies to traffic. Think of it as a human-assisted Strava. We're each responsible for our own actions out there, on and off the bike, both as users of the road as as courteous visitors to the neighborhoods we pass through. "Ceci n'est pas un race".

"Get your ass up that hill!" -- Kevin Winterfield, Fovnder
Dan Connelly