It had started to rain and even though we were riding the usual 10 hills, we were riding up Amethyst St from the backside and it proved to be an entirely different experience. The road is narrow, filled with potholes and blind corners with steep switchbacks that wind up a seemingly rural mountain. Our group had diminished in size and smiles were infrequent. But as I stood at a switchback filming riders go by I looked out from the hood of my rain jacket and for no reason in particular thought to myself, ‘This is why I put on this ride.’
It’s a Los Angeles that most people never see.
It’s a physically and mentally hard journey with little reward.
It’s camaraderie. The fastest cheer on the others from the top of the hill.
It’s simple. Pedal your bicycle up hill. No money exchanges hands, no permits or road closures, just simple bike riding on public streets.
1. 50 points – Jon (Wolfpack)
2. 40 points – Evan
3. 16 points – Ivan
4. 15 points – Jacob (Swarm!)
4. 15 points – Michael (La Grange)
6. 10 points – Chris (Orange 20)
7. 4 point – Mark D.
[update 4-10-12: Points/results now correct]
It didn’t rain until hill number 7, but since we did the route backwards [map] this when we were farthest from the start- probably reduced the drop rate.
Sasha, my partner for the Day in the Life series, made this cool video using our GoPro.
Road Block from Wolf Pack Hustle stopped by to shoot this video of Eldred St.
Thanks so much to everyone who makes this ride possible, from the Swarm! volunteers like Jesse and Molly who rode up every hill and kept score to those who come out and ride. It really makes me happy that so many people find joy in such a unique event! Below are some of my favorite photos and there’s more 2012 coverage from Wolf Pack Hustle, TakeOver LA, Velo Club LaGrange, and photos by Errin Vasquez/Area45 and Donovan Jenkins. And there’s the history of the previous 6 years.