Reno to Mendocino: Day 4, Mendocino Pass
Day 4 went from the Central Valley to the Mendocino forest. There was only one climb: a single 5,000 feet climb to Mendocino pass, and then back down on the other side.
The day started wet with condensation. All my stuff was incredibly wet!
The start of the day was a paceline to get to the base of the pass. It was a paved road, but we did encouter some wildlife.
The pass started very steep. The first part of the road went through an area that was affected by fire many years ago. There is still a monument to the fallen firefighters, with white crosses visible in the side of the mountain planted on the places where they died. They were far and small, but they are visible from the picture below if you look closely.
The road dirt road up to the pass was as wide as an highway, with pretty much no traffic. The only trucks that I encouters were likely hunters. Crossbow hunting season was open at the time.
For this day, having the support truck did make things easier: there was no water along the road. I had my 3L camelback and 2 water bottles, but without the refills I would have run out of water a few times.
Not sure if it was the length, or maybe the conditions, but the climb to the top of the path was very hard on me. I got to the top and I was psycologically exausted. Luckily Jesse (our great mechanic!) was at the top of the pass waiting for me with fresh water and drinks.
After the 5,000 feet ascent, there was the 5,000 feet descent! The same large dirt road was going down on the other side.
The road was smooth and I picked up quite a bit of speed. The tires were pretty much flying over any rock in the road. I had to stop 2 or 3 times because I was worried that my brakes would overheat. It was a fun descent!
The camp was at the base of the pass. Once we got there, the weather was warm and confy. It wasn't going to be like that for long!