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Sunday I went from Livermore up Mines road and climbed Hamilton. Wow, the road down to the west looked fun also.

What is the normal "Intro to Hamilton 101" course? (i.e., where to park, approx milage/time. Something with a 5-10 mile warm up before the gritty stuff.
 

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I just park around Alum Rock Ave, near Mt. Hamilton Rd. There are several parking areas around there.

It's really a fun climb. It'd do it more often if I lived closer to it.
 

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I did Mt. Hamilton 2 weeks ago. We started in Pleasanton went out Calaveras south to Mt Hamilton up from the west side. I little easier climb than the east side I think. Went out Mines and back to Pleasanton. The descent down the east side was really fast. About 112 round trip.

Sorry that didn't really answer your question. Been in to see Chris P lately? He has two new Look 566 built up in the showroom by the 586. You got a sweet ride Desmo.
 

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A few weeks ago I did the loop starting in Milpitas, up the west side of Mt Hamilton, down the east side, Mines Rd, Livermore and back over Calaveras. I parked in the Target parking lot in Milpitas cnr Park Victoria Ave and Landess Ave. It was a good spot to start from as it offered a warmup route through Alum Rock Park to the start of Mt Hamilton Rd.

http://rides.chriscowan.us/activity/Mt-Hamilton-Pleasanton-Calaveras/id/310
 

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ratpick said:
A few weeks ago I did the loop starting in Milpitas, up the west side of Mt Hamilton, down the east side, Mines Rd, Livermore and back over Calaveras. I parked in the Target parking lot in Milpitas cnr Park Victoria Ave and Landess Ave. It was a good spot to start from as it offered a warmup route through Alum Rock Park to the start of Mt Hamilton Rd.

http://rides.chriscowan.us/activity/Mt-Hamilton-Pleasanton-Calaveras/id/310
It was my first time doing the loop. I was really surprised at how beautiful and peaceful it was between Hamilton and the Junction, like being in another state.
 

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Tort said:
It was my first time doing the loop. I was really surprised at how beautiful and peaceful it was between Hamilton and the Junction, like being in another state.
It is a really nice ride! Not so sure how it would be in summer, though.

I want to do that loop in the other direction next time.. I think climbing Mines Rd then the east side of Mt Hamilton would be tougher than the west side climb of Mt Hamilton.
 

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ericm979 said:
There is water- there is a spring right below mile marker 3 (miles to the top from the east are painted on the road). I haven't drunk from it but I have put my helmet under the spigot to wet it down.
I was chatting with a cyclist from an Alameda club while descending the back side who said that the water from the spring was drinkable. Personally, I'd avoid it, but worth mentioning.

ericm979 said:
One of my frequent training rides is to go up Mt Ham, down the back side to the creek and back up, down the front to the CDF station, back up the last climb (2000' of climbing), then back down to Alum Rock. It's about 60 miles and 9000' of climbing.
Ooh.. that's nice.. I've mapped that route for Death Ride training!
 

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An often used parking spot is right on Alum Rock at the intersection with Mt Hamilton rd. I have heard of cars getting broken into there 20 years ago but it seems pretty safe now. The beginning of Mt Ham is gentle enough that it can serve as a warmup. Actually the whole thing is pretty gentle compared to other climbs in the area. It's because they built it so they could bring telescope parts up to the peak by horse and buggy.

The other side is something else. 4.2 miles and 2000' of climbing, that's an average of 8.8% and there's a couple mile section that's more like 10%. It's one of my favorite climbs in the area. It can be very hot back there.... often 10+ degrees more than it is at the top. I have ridden there when the temp is 107. There is water- there is a spring right below mile marker 3 (miles to the top from the east are painted on the road). I haven't drunk from it but I have put my helmet under the spigot to wet it down.

There is water at the big observatory- go up the hill on the right (as you are coming from san jose), go around the observatory to the north side. The water fountain, bathrooms and vending machines are inside the lobby.

On the Mines rd loop, you can get water at the Junction resturaunt (so I am told) and at the CDF station nearby (not very tasty but no hassle).

One of my frequent training rides is to go up Mt Ham, down the back side to the creek and back up, down the front to the CDF station, back up the last climb (2000' of climbing), then back down to Alum Rock. It's about 60 miles and 9000' of climbing.
 

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Yesterday I rode from Livermore to the observatory and back (my first century, woohoo)... once I got to the intersection of del Valle and Mines, for the entire rest of the day I think I got passed by 3-4 cars total and only saw about 10 coming in the other direction.

It being a Wednesday, I only saw 5 other cyclists and that wasn't until the end of my ride in the late afternoon, and none of them were on the stretch in between del Valle and Mt. Hamilton-- I was surprised.

If the weather stays like this, I'd say take a day off and do this ride ASAP because it's gorgeous out there. The Junction was open so there was a nice burger and beer break, too. Does anybody ride out to Patterson from the Junction? What is that section like?
 

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patterson from mines

not terrible. used to do it on the moto all the time. rolling. much more gravel in the eastbound direction. very little traffic. i believe there is a race in from patterson in the spring (early bird series) hope that helps, i would think 20 or so miles? maybe a little more
 

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jetdog9 said:
If the weather stays like this, I'd say take a day off and do this ride ASAP because it's gorgeous out there. The Junction was open so there was a nice burger and beer break, too. Does anybody ride out to Patterson from the Junction? What is that section like?
That road is called Del Puerto Canyon, and the Canyon Century follows this route ([url=http://www.modestonorthrotary.org/rideinfo.htm]http://www.modestonorthrotary.org/rideinfo.htm)[/URL]. I was out there last week in my BMW - Corral Hollow->(5)->Del Puerto->Mines makes for 100 miles of low-trafficked, twisty goodness in a car (or motorcycle - the sport bikers are out on those roads big time).

Heading Westbound on Del Puerto would make for a fairly tough climb, one I would rather face early in a ride. The Eastbound ride would see a relatively short climb, and a long descent into Patterson. Trouble is, once you've arrived, you've arrived in Patterson. The easiest way back would probably be to head up to Tracy, then take the Altamont Pass Road back to Livermore. Bonus pain points for taking Patterson Pass Road (edit: preferred for heading back to Livermore) or Corral Hollow instead.
 

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One heads up, if you head out to Paterson / Tracy and you make it there in the afternoon be prepared for headwinds like you have never encountered before.
If you are into that thing, and want even more pain loop back over Patterson Pass around 3 in the afternoon.
 

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colinmcnamara said:
If you are into that thing, and want even more pain loop back over Patterson Pass around 3 in the afternoon.
I always do this one early in the day yet every time I have been at the top of Patterson I almost get blown over, of course my bladed spokes don't help here at all. Never even considered doing in the afternoon. I usually come back via Altamont, always a head wind but at least a fighting chance of getting back to the Livermore side.
 
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