Alta Alpina Challenge


Alta Alpina Challenge: Riding the Wild Sierra

Rider Feedback

I wanted to thank you and all of the fantastic volunteers for a great 8 Pass Challenge. The route is beautiful, the road surface it "sweet" and the support is excellent. I do not know about the other riders but it turned out being hotter than I expected which only enhanced the challenge. Along this line I wanted to give special recognition to the rest stop crew at the top of Monitor Pass. They were ready for the heat with iced towels for the riders and plenty of ice for the water bottes. As soon as you rolled into the rest stop they had an iced towel on your sholders and they were filling your water bottle with ice. Great support, initiative and advance planning. Thanks.

It certainly was a challenge but glad to have the opportunity to join you in such an amazing place. Everyone was wonderful & it was pretty cool on some hard uphills ;-) to have someone come from behind me - say my name - and say that I'm doing a good job! Nice touch. Keep up the good work !! Thanks again

It was by far the most beautiful ride I've been on. Thanks to you & all the hard working volunteers that made it possible. See you next year!

Thanks for putting on a great ride. Although I didn't finish all eight due to equipment problems, I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge. I will try again next year. Thanks again to all AA Club Members and Volunteers for putting another a great event! The organization and support was awsome.

We really enjoyed the ride today. It was well organized and all the rest points had plenty of volunteers, food, supplies, etc. Look forward to attending next years ride. Thank you and great job!

Thank you for all you and the whole team did, I had a fantastic day.

Thank you all very much for such a wonderful experience this past Saturday. The ride, the support, the staff, the volunteers, the food, all phenomenal. What a pleasure it was. It was very obvious the ride was assembled not only by riders, but people who ride the Sierras...Thank you all so much.....See you next year !!!

I can't say "Thank You!" enough. As a veteran of 5 Death Rides, I found the AA ride to be a huge breath of fresh air. The size of the ride was perfect, the staff was enthusiastic, well informed and downright fun to chat with. The rest stops were well stocked with the right stuff, and, yes, for a ride like this fewer rest stops are better (legs stay fresher and one doesn't run the risk of over-carbing which can kill your ride). A personal ride consultant (she was great- her name escapes me)?!? C'mon it doesn't get better than that. Finally, the name on the jersey card really made chatting with folks that much more comfortable- nice idea. See ya next year!

Thanks to everyone! What a great event, wonderful volunteers, EVERYTHING you promised and more!

Thanks again for a wonderful event! No doubt the beautiful weather contributed greatly to my ability to finish this year, because I'm still terribly sensitive to altitude and it was a bit of a struggle to breathe. ;-) Also helping me along were the awesome volunteers who really are some of the all-time best! Well done!

Just wanted to say THANK YOU for a fabulous event. The people at all the rest stops were so supportive and encouraging. The food options were great. The whole low-key atmosphere and ability to choose the various routes made this such a positive experience for all levels of riders. I loved it and hope to return in the future.

Thanks for a great ride, support was second to none. The ice cold wash cloth and cold melon and fruit at the top of Monitor made my day, and ice really makes a rest stop and multiple flavors of Heed, I now have a new favorite Mandarin Orange. I'll be back!

Thank you for a well planned event. This was my first organized bike ride. I rode with my 15 year old son on the 27 mile ride of the kid challenge. I was impressed with the volunteers at the rest stops. They were nice and friendly. The snacks were great. The orange slices, bananas, melon, cookies and juice were very refreshing. You could not have asked for better weather. It was not too hot and not too cold. Just right. We haven't ridden a lot on roads, mostly mountain bike trails and dirt roads.
Maybe next year we will be ready to tackle one of the passes. Thanks,
Andrew, Gardnerville

I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed this year's Challenge. I rode the first edition but didn't learn my lesson. The volunteers at all of the feeds went the extra mile to take care of all of the participants. Your soup makers, bike parkers, and Cytomax mixers made a strong contribution to the effort which help us all through a long day at the office. Okay, maybe those guys in drag at the top of Kingsbury were taking life a little too seriously. One small detail I ended up really appreciating were the rider names on the number plates. On a long ride such as a double. we often work together, and it's easier to communicate by name than calling each other the the bicycle manufacturer's name from the down tube on their bike. See you nest year,

thank you wholeheartedly, again, for a most memorable ride. Thanks to you, the club members and volunteers, I was fortunate to experience the wondrous, majestic views of the Sierra riding for the first time. The supportive, welcoming volunteers, who were patient to answer all questions at sign up and at rest stops, regarding cloths, ascends, views, passes, not only rendered the experience wonderful, but actually helped me push myself and do the three passes I signed up for... Every volunteer I met contributed to the sum of a great day. I find it amazing that so many people take so much of their time just to make other people happy.

Dude, what rad roads you guys have up there. I was stoked to be able to come out and play. Looking forward to next year.

I was really impressed with the way the club hosted the ride Saturday. First time I rode in it. Best food and support I've ever seen. Most memorable things I liked was the quality and variety of the food, being able to sit down for lunch inside out of the sun, eating mashed potatoes in a lawn chair on top of Ebbetts, valet parking on top of Monitor, and the "What can I help you with?" attitude that every volunteer seemed to have. I plan to either ride or volunteer for this event every year going forward. Great job, and thanks again for all your efforts!

Hi, After all the hype and e-mails over the last few months, I thought it would be good to send out a quick follow-up about yesterday's ride down in Markleeville, put on by our friends down south -- the Alta Alpina Cycling Club. I can only say that if you couldn't attend, you missed what I hope is the start of a new annual tradition. Obviously, you can't beat the scenery and the close location. Then, you add their amazing ability to organize a ride and pull it off with a smile even in weather that was a bit difficult at times. The rest stops were well stocked and the volunteers were wonderfully helpful. They had tons of motorcycle support to help fix flats and repair anything else, loads of SAG wagons driving around, and all of this was running from something like 3:00 in the morning to 11:00 at night for people who rode up to as many 200 miles. Need I say more!
It was great to see so many Pedalers attend this event. I rode with a couple of our cohorts and ran into a few more after the ride. I also hung out with people from the Bay Area and even Los Angeles, so this ride did reach a pretty wide audience. With the ability to plan and train for a ride that suits your desires/goals in such a wonderful place with such awesome people, I'm thinking they're onto something. Congratulations to Alta Alpina for putting together a truly top-notch event.

Thank you very much for a fantastic ride on Saturday. I was able to complete the 8 passes and successfully complete my first double. If it were not for the great support at the rest stops and your staff always wanting to lend a hand I don't know if I would have made it through the ride especially with the weather. I will pass the word on to friends that this is a great ride to take part in. Thanks,

Hello, Thank you so much for putting on such an awesome ride. I loved it.

Hola, A thousand times more....WELL DONE!!!
Polar 720i
Total Ascent = 20,860
miles = 197.2
average elevation = 7,000 (fairly well calibrated)
my time = 17:54
You have created the: HARDEST (by, riding at extreme altitude, skill level on the descents (I DID slow way the hell down coming down any wet patches....e.g., 2,000 feet worth of Ebbetts) and MOST BEAUTIFUL (by far...only two blocks of "junk" miles...if you call downtown Markleeville "junk") double anywhere. Well done again.
ps the inclusion of many wonderful Native Americans was most welcome. it brought us closer to the cultural as well as the natural beauty of that area.

1. The course is perfectly laid out. The ride up Woodfords in the morning is great because the traffic is quite low, whereas at night, it can be quite busy. Also, flying downhill in Woodfords at night even with lights would be a scary proposition.
2. Riding up and down Monitor at night is fine because of the lack of traffic.
3. That Kinsgbury climb was NOT EASY! That said, it was still a great challenge and quite beautiful.
Thanks again for a truly fantastic challenge. I'm definitely going to have to get into better shape to conquer the altitude and climbing.

Good morning,
I just wanted to get a quick email off to you to pat everyone on the back for doing such a great job on the ride yesterday. Everything about it was fun and exciting. I loved the website, it had a lot of information and fun to browse through. The route was fantastic. I rode in areas I had heard about, but had not seen.
Unfortunately, this year I had to dial it back a notch and do a much easier ride than most. I skipped Kingsbury Grade and, with another rider rode out to the bottom of the grade and met our friends coming back. We rode out and did Luther Pass and Carson Pass, then headed back to the barn (Turtle Rock). A group of us are leaving for Colorado on Thursday for the Bike Tour of Colorado which I know some of your club members have done. I know this because they club members are so nice and friendly and helpful. Anyway, with BTC coming up, I wanted to take it easy.
However, the Wild Sierra Challenge will be on my "must do" list for next year. Don't change a thing! The Hammer products were the icing on the cake. Really appreciated that. I intend to let Hammer know also. The Rest Stops were so perfectly positioned and the people staffing them were awesome. The kids even valet parked my bike at the Emigrant Trail stop. I had several friends who did the 8 Passes. I drove back to the Bay Area last night and was not there to see who ended up doing what. But I think they all did well. Waiting to hear.

Thank you all for a great event. I really had a good time and hope to do it again. Sadly, the illness that I brought with me this time kept me from completing the 8 Pass. All the workers and volunteers were excellent and so were the rest stops, all of which I happily used. Thanks much!

Excellent organization, friendly, helpful rest stop staff and great SAG support. Destined to become a classic. For the record my Garmin 305 (with battery extender) gave total elevation gain of 21416' and 197.8 miles. Thanks again.

Thanks for putting on such a great ride on Saturday! The support and organization were amazing. I really appreciated the hot soup and hot chocolate on top of the cold summits, and the rest of the food was outstanding too. The volunteers were unfailingly cheerful and helpful, even as they endured the chilly conditions. The course was as beautiful and challenging as promised. Truly an epic ride and certainly deserving of a spot in the Triple Crown Stage Race rotation. Sincerely,

How fortunate I was to participate in the Challenge! It was a fantastic experience: my personal best distance and climb at altitude; but what really struck me was how well organized and managed the whole event was, from beginning to end. I have communicated and will continue to communicate my experience to non - participating riding friends of mine to increase turnout next year. Thank you for such an extraordinary experience! Sincerely,

I second the kudos for all the GPC members I saw during the ride. Everyone looked strong with enough spare energy for the occasional hand waive and communication as we crossed paths throughout the ride. I really enjoyed the Drive-thru lunch option, which I have to admit at the time was one of the best sandwiches I remember ever having (the simply thing in life :^). Bob

I just want to say thank you to all of the people who worked to make this ride doable, especially the wonderful volunteers at the rest stops. I want to say special thinks to the folks on top of Ebbetts and especially on the Monitor summit. The young lady on top of Monitor was the most helpful I've ever met on any organized ride and I hope you can pass on my personal thanks to her and her family that gave me the warm heater and hot chocolate I needed to finish all 8 passes, I think I may have been close to one of the last finishers. Thanks again.

So... the big event is over and it was awesome. I can't even try to put into words how much fun it was, how well the event was organized, how helpfull everyone was and how smooth it all went. It made doing the 8 passes so much easier. The decision to stagger the start for riders doing different numbers of passes and adjust the finishing times too reduce possible conjestion on the final climbs and descents was inspired. A great idea! It was so good that if you have plans for running this event again next year, save a spot for me will ya! Tell everyone associated with the event "Thanks" for all their efforts and hardwork - it was greatly appreciated. See you next year!

Thank you for hosting a beautiful, extremely-well supported ride. And being able to camp at the start was awesome!

I wanted to comment on how well Alta Alpina put on the event. This was my first double and the volunteers were awesome and were a main reason I was able to complete all 8 passes. Congratulations on putting on such a great event and I look forward to joining you next year.

What a guys were awesome!!!

Thanks, it was a great ride, and you guys did a GREAT JOB!

This was an awesome ride. There were so many details, like the bike racks at the rest stops that made this such a unique and so well supported ride. I had a great day. The ride support was remarkable. The kids even valet parked our bikes for us when we pulled up to the rest stop on Emigrant Trail. Hot soup on the top of Carson, just before I descended Carson in the hail. I would like to see this club and this incredible riding event get the notoriety it deserves. I saw a lot of people out there from morning till we went home at night and they worked all day long, putting up with the inclement weather as well. Yet they still were helpful and cheerful. Highly recommend everyone put this on their ride calender for next year.