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Hi,

I'm thinking of taking a job in Tucson, moving from denver and all that is dear to me. please tell me of some great regular rides, good clubs, race schedules, anything at all will help. I swear I'll bring beer

chow
 

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I made the same move

I made a similar move about two years ago from Boulder to Tucson. My advice, don't do it!!!

Seriously, I find Tucson to be very similar to Boulder in terms of the quality of rides/routes and number of riders you see out on the road. June is pretty miserable with the heat but I commute by bike year round, something I never could in Boulder. If you let me know where you plan on living and what exactly you are looking for I can give you some more information. I live in Oro Valley, on the NW side of Tucson. A lot of rides go from the university (downtown), most notably the shootout on Saturday but most of the bike shops also have rides.
Several clubs in town from recreational to racing. A few good bike shops, Arizona Bicycle Experts, Fairwheel and Arizona Cyclist to name a few, all with websites. The best rides IMHO are to the top of Mt. Lemmon which is a 25 mile climb at an average of about 5%. A loop from Oro Valley that goes over Picture Rocks and then back over Gates Pass, works out to be about 75 miles. Gates is short but pretty steep, especially the back side of it coming back to Tucson. Kitt Peak is also a great ride but is a long ride unless you drive part way. The local race, TBC has beencancelled this year from what I have heard. Phoenix has more of a race scene, but there are a number of good races close by, Tour of Bisbee for example.

Please bring Fat Tire.
 

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idris icabod said:
I made a similar move about two years ago from Boulder to Tucson. My advice, don't do it!!!

Seriously, I find Tucson to be very similar to Boulder in terms of the quality of rides/routes and number of riders you see out on the road. June is pretty miserable with the heat but I commute by bike year round, something I never could in Boulder. If you let me know where you plan on living and what exactly you are looking for I can give you some more information. I live in Oro Valley, on the NW side of Tucson. A lot of rides go from the university (downtown), most notably the shootout on Saturday but most of the bike shops also have rides.
Several clubs in town from recreational to racing. A few good bike shops, Arizona Bicycle Experts, Fairwheel and Arizona Cyclist to name a few, all with websites. The best rides IMHO are to the top of Mt. Lemmon which is a 25 mile climb at an average of about 5%. A loop from Oro Valley that goes over Picture Rocks and then back over Gates Pass, works out to be about 75 miles. Gates is short but pretty steep, especially the back side of it coming back to Tucson. Kitt Peak is also a great ride but is a long ride unless you drive part way. The local race, TBC has beencancelled this year from what I have heard. Phoenix has more of a race scene, but there are a number of good races close by, Tour of Bisbee for example.

Please bring Fat Tire.
Which is the road over Picture Rocks? Is it somewhere between Gates Pass and Avra Valley Rd? Is it paved?

WAIT! This just in: I found Picture Rocks Rd., and it looks paved, at least in the satellite images. What's the climbing like on that road? And you got 75 miles? A similar ride I've done--starting at First & Oracle, Oracle/Ina to Speedway, over Gates/Pass, Kinney to Sandario to Avra Valley Rd, the Airline to Lambert to Silverbell, then back to Ina/Oracle/home is 65 miles. Maybe you had a different leg? Maybe Rancho Vistoso to Moore to Thornydale to Tangerine to Frontage to Avra Valley? Tell me quick....I want to add more to the rides that I cycle through each month.

And yer definitely right about heading East over Gates Pass.....that's a thigh buster, especially if you're doing a round trip over Gates Pass......it's much worse than Mt. Lemmon. Mt Lemmon is more of a slog. For short and bittersweet climb, head to Snyder Rd, west of its intersection w/ Kolb. For a little more than a quarter mile it has an average 20% grade.
 

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I was wondering why you hadn't responded yet. I am very sketchy with road names but Picture Rocks (which is paved) is a bit more well travelled by cars. It isn't bad usually going the way we do. It isn't as steep as Gates. I get 75 miles in because I live north of Oro Valley, about 1 mile east of Oracle after turning on Golder Ranch Road. Cycle up my way then turn around, it adds about 5 miles on each way which sounds about right with your mileage. If you ever want to ride with us you are welcome. I can let you know of any planned rides. Most of my riding buddies live on Rancho Vistoso so I usually pedal down and meet them in that area.

I will ask my more geographically gifted friends for a complete road list and post it.

I've done the Snyder road climb. I am not too good with really steep climbs but I like the less steep constant climbs such as Lemmon. Boulder, CO had a lot of similar terrain, either long and not too steep or the kind of climbs where you never want to see a bike again.
 

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idris icabod said:
I was wondering why you hadn't responded yet. I am very sketchy with road names but Picture Rocks (which is paved) is a bit more well travelled by cars. It isn't bad usually going the way we do. It isn't as steep as Gates. I get 75 miles in because I live north of Oro Valley, about 1 mile east of Oracle after turning on Golder Ranch Road. Cycle up my way then turn around, it adds about 5 miles on each way which sounds about right with your mileage. If you ever want to ride with us you are welcome. I can let you know of any planned rides. Most of my riding buddies live on Rancho Vistoso so I usually pedal down and meet them in that area.

I will ask my more geographically gifted friends for a complete road list and post it.

I've done the Snyder road climb. I am not too good with really steep climbs but I like the less steep constant climbs such as Lemmon. Boulder, CO had a lot of similar terrain, either long and not too steep or the kind of climbs where you never want to see a bike again.
That would explain the extra odometerage. I lived a while in Boulder, too. My first ride after moving there was west, up Baseline into Boulder Mtn. Park. Bad move. I could see my lungs as I exhaled. The saving grace was that the ride wasn't nearly as bad as Magnolia was steep.
 

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Our usual route for Gates Pass

Start East Wilds Road
Left Oracle Road
Right Tangerine
Left La Canada Drive
Right Naranja Drive
Left N. Shannon Road
Right W. Cortaro Farms Road
Right on W. Ina Road (heres where I cannot follow MapQuest because I am sure Ina turns into Picture Rocks Road, but we go over and through Saguaro national Park)
Left N. Sandario Road
Left N. Kinney Road (stop at visitors center for water and pissing)
Round McCain loop then back onto N. Kinney
Left onto Gates Pass Road and over we go cursing all the way
Left N. Camino De Oeste
Right W. Sweetwater Drive
Left N. Silverbell Road
Right N. Cortaro Rd under the I-10
Left I-10 Frontage Road
Right Camino De Manana
Right W. Tangerine
Left Oracle and home...hot tub and beer

I posted some pictures of the route, the hyperlink is

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?t=47451

This was all pulled from Mapquest, it all sounds familiar.
 

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idris icabod said:
Start East Wilds Road
Left Oracle Road
...ride details....
Left Oracle and home...hot tub and beer

I posted some pictures of the route, the hyperlink is

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?t=47451

This was all pulled from Mapquest, it all sounds familiar.
Copied it and will run it through DeLorme's Topo USA 5.0 (I'm not a GPS or altimeter guy, but Topo USA calculates elevation changes and gives route profiles.....although I have to run it in Virtual PC on me Mac) and see what kind of mileage and elevation changes I'll have. If I ride down Ina to Silverbell then over Gates Pass to Kinney, then reverse back over Gates Pass to UA and up Mountain/First/Oracle to home, that gives 2869ft of elevation gain. For a cruel twist, after coming back over Gates Pass I sometimes add a couple laps up and down A Mountain.....but that only happens on days that I really hate myself. Going over Gates Pass and down Sandario to Avra Valley/Airline/Lambert/Silverbell/Ina/Oracle/Home is 2642ft. And believe it or not doing the Oracle/Ina/Skyline/Sunrise/craycroft(N)/Kolb/Pima/UA/Mountain/First/Oracle/home gives an elevation gain of 2196 ft. Craycroft does get steep north of Sunrise. I like rides with lots of climbing, so I'm gonna do your ride Saturday.

Nice pics in the other thread, BTW. I definitely approve of the bike. Looking at the western side of Gates Pass in your pics conjours up the dread I get when I'm headed that way. The bottom of that climb is steep enough, but someone had to go and be uber cruel and make the steepest part at the top.

I'd like to hear about upcoming rides. The only times I get to ride w/ other people is when I happen upon someone on the way to or from school.....and I guess I rode with a few people in El Tour.....ok, a lot of people in El Tour.
 

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superfastbikes said:
Hi,

I'm thinking of taking a job in Tucson, moving from denver and all that is dear to me. please tell me of some great regular rides, good clubs, race schedules, anything at all will help. I swear I'll bring beer

chow
There are lots of clubs and tons of riding opportunities in Tucson. I ride with a club called Saguaro Velo, and it's a really diverse, fun group of fast recreational riders and some racers. There are plenty of other clubs, some more serious than others.

A *great* website showing weekly Tucson area rides and races is:
http://www.aliciarides.com

One of the most well-known local rides is the Saturday morning Shootout organized by Fairwheel Bikes. I've never ridden in it, but I understand it's a good way to start the day by getting smoked by everybody. It's listed on the site above.
 

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idris icabod said:
Left onto Gates Pass Road and over we go cursing all the way
In the days pre-baby, I used to do intervals on the back side of Gates Pass. On a good day I could get in about 10 climbs over what I have heard is 12% grade.

If you're up for some cross-training, there will be a foot race over Gates Pass on March 4 (http://www.publichealth.arizona.edu/sundown/).

-=[doug]=-
 
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