Since last season we have been planning to go to the Sea Otter Classic, Whisky Off Road and the La Tierra Torture, a trip that would last 10 days and take 2,800 miles of driving.
It all started as we decided to drive 18 hours overnight to get to the Sea Otter Classic, so we would have the most time to do things while we were there. When we arrived at 6 in the morning and I saw the Raceway Venue, I was so excited. We registered, and then set up our Race camp. I could hardly wait to pre ride the course and explore the venue! The course was fantastic! We were excited to get to the Expo to meet our sponsors and make new friends. We did this Thursday, Friday and Saturday for 5 hours each day.
Thursday night, one of our sponsors, Light and Motion Bike Lights invited us to a media event/open house at their headquarters on Cannery Row in Monterey. Wow! Was that a great experence!
We watched the dual slalom, professional mens and womens short track and XC event. It was a great time and it was awesome meeting Burry Stander, Kyle Stait, Emily Batty, Greg Minnaar, Catherine Pendrel, Cam Zink, Geoff Kabush, Georgia Gould, Barry Wicks, Cedric Gracia,Todd Wells, JHK, Sam Schultz, Max Plaxton and many more.
On race day we warmed up on the Laguna Seca Raceway where the race started. We had previewed the course 2 times and it included the Raceway, doubletrack, sweet awesome singletrack and 2,800 feet of climbing in 14 miles. The race went great. Jake took 5th and I took 7th. Jake and I raced in the 13-14 year old class and the kids in placing in front of us were the top racers in the nation. The 6 boys who finished before me all beat last years winning time, while I was just a minute shy.
On Monday morning with our successes at the Sea Otter behind us, we left Sea Otter/Laguna Seca and went exploring at the Point Lobos National Marine Reserve. I loved seeing the Harbor Seals with their pups, Otters, Crabs and touching sea creatures in tidal pools. We finished and started our drive to the Big Basin Redwoods State Park, our camping destination.
On our way we stopped at the Boardwalk and beach in Santa Cruz. It was fantastic playing at the beach for the first time. On our way to Big Basin I saw hundreds of big redwoods and I thought it was too good to be true. We took a night ride with our Light and Motion bike lights and the redwoods looked like giant soldiers standing beside the trail. During the ride I imagined that I was racing through the forest trying not to let the soldiers capture me. We saw the biggest redwood in the park, the Mother of the Forest, 70 feet around, 321 feet tall and a width of 15.3 feet. We needed to head back to our campsite to get some sleep for our big trek to the waterfalls the next day.
Read Jakes Blog for the continuation of our odyessy!