Old Caz is the quintessential Hopper. With three dirt climbs and descents, an eclectic patchwork of Sonoma County ribbon roads and a creek crossing,Old Caz is the epitome of adventure riding.
Take Old Caz, bookend it with the steep side of Sweetwater to the West and Fort Ross to the East. Descend Myers Grade and finish atop Coleman Valley and you have one of the craftiest, hardest and most beautiful Grasshoppers possible. And it’s “only” 70 miles!
Option #2 is a bit longer but leaves out Old Caz. Some people love Old Caz and the creek cross…and can’t get enough. If gravel is not for you (or a river crossing) , Option 2 is perfect! After descending into Guerneville you will take River Rd to East Austin Creek and then Cazadero on your way to rejoining the course on Fort Ross Rd.
In order to do this safely we will follow the same protocol as last year. After checking in riders will ride on their own or small groups to RiverFront Park. The “only” dirt on this Hopper is Old Caz. What does this mean? Well…ideally you’d ride a Diverge with 30c tires or…
Next best bike choice is a road bike with 25 or 28 c tires or cross with slicks? There’s a distinct advantage of being on a road bike 85% of the time. But the 15% dirt is a ripping dirt descent followed by a creek crossing, another dirt climb and another dirt descent. This is my favorite ride…since my last ride. Couldn’t think of a better combination of adventure on two wheels. Not a “gravel grinder”, not a “road race”. A magical mystery tour of sorts deep in the West County. 9,000 ft of climbing in 74 miles. Really, that’s a lot of fun packed into a not-so-huge ride. Don’t miss out!
There will be a Hammer Nutrition hydration stop at the top of Old Caz climb @mile 38. We’ll also have tasty snacks from HealthWarrior and other snacks. You can stop to fill up or if you leave your own bottles (clearly labeled with you name) at the BreakAwayBikes tent at the start , we’ll have them set out for you to grab. No hand-ups. This year there will be a second “rest” stop at the mile 51 at the intersection of Fort Ross and Meyers Grade to top off your bottles and grab a quick snack.
Grasshoppers have always been about adventure, exploration and pushing your limits. These are timed rides and not races. All Hopper routes are open and riders must obey all traffic laws and rules. See RULES OF ENGAGEMENT
7:30 Registration open Occidental Community Center
9:30 or so… Roll to RiverFront Regional Park
10:45 Start from Riverfront Park ** Changed from 10:15 to give riders time to make it to the start.
2:00-? Finish ‘atop Coleman Valley Road at Ocean Song. Please don’t drive to the finish. There is very limited parking. From here riders have about 3 miles back to Occidental.
I don't believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive.
If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got