Day 3 Arizona Strip gravel grinder – 107 miles
This day is the serious training day. Have a plan for this day! For those of us doing long events in the next month like 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo solo or Iditarod, the full route is perfect. For those coming out of the winter closet not so much.
- Sunrise is 7:45, sunset is 5:50. This gives 10 hours of light with the 8AM start time. Expect to take about 8-10 hours moving fast with few stops. If you think you may take over 12 hours a pre-dawn start is recommended.
- Lights are recommended for anyone planning the full route.
- If riding SS 32×18 (29er) is the minimum gearing recommendation.
- We will be in some remote spots. Be ready. There is no cell service in some areas.
- Coyote spring is at mile 55. It’s reliable and piped but needs treated (probably). Lynda thinks it tastes bad though and shuts her gut down so be wary.
- After Starvation Point the route takes a figure-8 course out on the Arizona Strip. Click on the map below for the route visual and directional arrows. On the first part of the figure-8 choose the north side. In the middle of the figure-8 there is a 0.7 mile section of road you will ride twice, both times through and in the same direction both times through. First time through (mile 41) choose the left turn to sweep south to Joe Blake Hill. Second time through (mile 76) choose the right fork to sweep south again and back over to Starvation Point. In 2009 a group rode the second loop in reverse. I think it is harder/slower that way but they had fun!
- Shortest option is to do an out-and-back ride to Starvation Point. Starvation Point is 20 miles from the start. 15 easy fast miles plus a 5 mile climb up to the point. The view at the top is big.
- River Road bisects the first part of the “figure 8” twice. River road makes a beeline N for town, this gives 2 points, one at mile 34, the other at 83, where you can exit the route and get back to town pretty quick.
- Another option is when you exit Warner valley at mile 72. Turn right/north here into town instead of left/south to stay on route. It’s all pavement to town from here, about 10 miles. Here’s a link to the Warner valley to town track and the River Road waypoints: Camp Lynda Day 3 shortcut from Warner valley to town
Click this for the visual. The orange route is the full course. The red route is the Warner valley exit.
We did this route in 2009. Finisher list here Dave Harris has the male record for this route 7:47, SS 34×15 (26er), Lynda has the female record for this route 8:35, SS 32×18 (29er). Some others got an early pre-dawn start and took 12+ hours.