It hasn't been a week yet since we struck out to do the Grinduro- an event orchestrated by Giro to benefit the Eastern Sierra Trail Stewardship. The event page boasted camping, epic views, challenging terrain and beer. Not being ones to shy away from epic events that ask for you to dig deep in the pain cave and be rewarded with libations and fireside tall tales from the ride, we signed up. The Grinduro was hosted by Quincy, a small logging town nestled in the eastern Sierras, about an hour and a half north east of Marysville, CA. Its the kind of place Carver would have written about, where the hum of the sawmill always abuzz, and the nights come too quickly. In mid-October, the air smells crisp in anticipation of fall, and the trees are turning a blaze from the top down not even ashamed of turning too red too soon. Something about the timing and location of the event created an environment ripe for a ride with about 300 of your closest friend you wont soon forget.
There are some rides you just know will stick with you. The Grinduro is one of those rides. The climbs went on forever, but so did the descents, and it felt like a way bigger day in the saddle than the stats added up to. The enduro format had me rethinking my pace and effort on non-timed sections, not that it made much of a difference there was no way to save energy up a climb China Grade. The racing, the music, the beer and whiskey, and seeing all of my Northern California bike racing and framebuilding buddies made for a great weekend that was all over too soon. I want to go back next weekend. Or maybe the weekend after I'm still a little sore. -Sean Coffey
That ish was gnar. So much climbing and descending enough to make you see double. Fire roads, single track, rocks, loose corners, good folks, so much food, Ray Barbee, whiskey, and suffering. The area was epic beautiful with miles of roads and trails you would die for or from. Much love to Fergus and Sean from Ritchey for crewing up, couldnt ask for a better or or dirtier team. Next time 650b hardtail! -Dustin Klein
Here's the thing about an event like the Grinduro: it's so far out of my element I really had no idea what to expect. Sure, I've found myself riding off road when the signs clearly stated keep off the grass. Yeah, I jumped a couple fences in my life to see where the damn road lead to. However, Im not a man of dirt or gnar shredding some off road trail with any regularity. Rides like this arent in my vocabulary; tell me about high-banked tracks and technical crits and youre speaking my language. Strangely, when Dustin and Sean brought this event up, it peaked my interest. Hell, why not, I remember saying. Cut to me 40 miles in, 4.5k feet of climbing behind me, a number of sketchy baby head laden descents later and Im feeling like a million bucks. Even after the 18+% grade and fast technical single track, I felt myself hooked on the thrill of the event.