JANUARY FINAL RIDER UPDATE
rolls Sat, Jan 16, '16
12th Annual 2016
~~ and ~~
Solo/Tandem/Team Time Trials
Dear Registered Stagecoach Riders,
The Stagecoach stampede rolls THIS WEEKEND! Thank You for registering for the 12th Annual 2016 Stagecoach Century on Sat, Jan 16, '16, in Ocotillo, CA.
Stagecoach Countdown = 6 Days!
206 Registered Riders / 294 Open Slots
Stagecoach is a unique event, requiring careful preparation & respect of all participants. This email has final updated information. It updates the Jan 5th email (reprinted below). Carefully read these important final pre-ride updates & tips. Everything below is also posted on the website.
SAFETY is the top Stagecoach priority. This is not a race! Ride with extreme care, be alert at all times for hazards such as potholes, road debris and sand, wind gusts, riders turning/stopping unexpectedly, vehicle traffic, and rough road surfaces.
Ride your like your life depends upon it, because it does! Point out hazards to other riders, announce your intentions, such as "Stopping!", or "On your left!".
Be kind to Vol's & other riders. Never antagonize vehicle drivers, even if they behave aggressively. Keep a cool head out there.
Do your homework! Read all about Stagecoach. As a wise rider once said, "Stagecoach is 99% Mental; the other 99% is Physical". Exactly! Knowing what to expect vastly improves your odds for success, because it builds confidence. But it's still a gutsy, physically demanding ride. Tricky weather can/will make it much harder.
Read, Study, Prepare!
PLAN YOUR RIDE AND RIDE YOUR PLAN!
1. Final Rider Instructions: The Final Rider Instructions summarize what every rider needs to know and contains a Course Map. All riders must carefully study these instructions before rolling. Any last-minute changes will be posted in the "Latest News" section of the Stagecoach webpage. Download here.
2. San Diego County Waiver Form:
Download, complete, date & sign. Bring to Packet Pick up and drop in the box. This is a mandatory San Diego County requirement for all Riders/Vol's. Thanks in advance for your compliance. Don't roll until done.
3. Driving Map/Directions:
Basic map showing location of Ocotillo, CA. Don't confuse with Ocotillo Wells, which is over 60 mi away.
. Google Map directions to Ocotillo, CA.
4. Rider Levels: The Rider Levels section on the website explains how to ride the course based on different goals & conditioning levels. There's also substantial info about adjusting to varied weather conditions along the course. Click here.
5. Weather: The most current Accuweather forecast is excellent for the event: "Considerable Cloudiness",
Lo 47F, Hi 67, Variable winds 5-13 mph. Even with this mostly favorable forecast, the start will be cold, so come prepared with clothing in layers, covering your entire body. See Jan 5 Update (below) for more info on weather and clothing.
6. Time Trial: An optional component of the FULL COURSE ONLY is to participate in Solo, Tandem, or Team Time Trials. This involves receiving a timing chip and following all the TT Rules & Procedures, in order to receive an official time. ALL RIDERS, need to be aware that the TT riders will be riding at a much faster pace than average. Especially for 4-Person Teams returning southbound on the course. They will announce "PASSING!" when overtaking slower riders. Since all riders are required to ride single file, this should be a routine & courtesy occurrence. However, in the past, some riders chose to ride 3 or 4 abreast, against the event rules, and have made passing difficult for Teams & Solo riders chasing down their final 20-25 miles. Please be aware of this and keep cool. If you hear "Passing", just get over to the right as far as safely possible. No Stress. No Drama. We're all on the same team. Thanks!
7. Last Chance! The 2016 Stagecoach Century is likely the end of the trail for this ride in it's current form. With under 300 riders, it's not possible to produce Stagecoach at this level. The field size needs to be over 500 to make it all work. I'm personally asking everyone to take one more shot at encouraging your cycling friends to join you at Stagecoach. The weather's going to be in the "good winter desert riding weather" category, so please put the word out one more time. There's a discount coupon at the bottom of this email. I encourage you to forward this email, or any of the previous emails, to anyone who may be interested in participating. Many Thanks! ~Jim, Event Director
~ Reprint of Jan 5 Rider Update ~
Dear Sturdy Riders,
It's time to EARN YOUR SPURS! Get ready to Saddle up & Ring in the New Year at Stagecoach! We Thank You for registering for the 12th Annual 2016 Stagecoach Century on Sat, Jan 16, '16, in Ocotillo, CA.
The Stagecoach Century is a unique event, and requires careful preparation and respect of all participants. To assist you, carefully read this email containing important pre-ride updates & tips.
Everything below is also posted on the website. The Final Rider Instructions summarize what every rider needs to know and contains the Course Map. All riders must carefully study these instructions before starting. Any last-minute changes will be posted in the "News" section of the Stagecoach webpage.
All Registered Riders will receive one more Rider Update Email next week, with any final updates and weather forecast info and recommendations.
Stagecoach Countdown = 11 Days!
Sponsors: We thank all Sponsors, Volunteers, and Affiliates who are essential to making Stagecoach possible. Please visit the Sponsor Corral at the bottom of this email for some great deals! Always mention Stagecoach, for potential discounts at your bike shop.
Official Charities: We proudly continue our long term Volunteer associations with the communities of Shelter Valley and Ocotillo as Official Charities for Stagecoach. These outstanding Non-Profit Community organizations have provided fantastic support for Stagecoach riders since the very beginning.
For the 12th Annual Stagecoach, we wish to showcase & reward Volunteers from Ocotillo (Start/Finish) and Shelter Valley (Turnaround point). Below are their special Donation links. Please Donate to support their community projects. To date, online rider donations total $85. Let's change that today!
Desert Museum (Ocotillo): Donate Now
Shelter Valley Citizen's Corp: Donate Now
Chip Timing: CEP Timing is returning to Stagecoach. Full Century riders have the option (free) to receive a timing chip on Sat in Ocotillo. Only the 100-mi course will be timed. Riders must have their wristbands validated at the turnaround point (at mile 50), past Shelter Valley. Timing Chips must be returned to the CEP Timing Booth in the Finish area. There's an $85 replacement fee for lost or missing timing chips. When approaching the Finish Line inside the Ocotillo Community Park, SLOW DOWN before making a safe Left turn from S2 into the park. Listen to Volunteers and STOP, if instructed. STOP immediately after crossing the Finish timing mat (which will be marked). USE EXTREME CAUTION ENTERING THE FINISH AREA!
Start Time: On Sat, Jan 16th Time Trial riders (Team and Solo) launch first, from 7:00-7:10 A.M. on tight intervals (less than 30 sec). The rest of the field starts immediately after the last Time Trial rider rolls from 7:10 - 9:00 A.M. Use extra care making the turn onto S2 out of the parking lot.
One Bite at a Time: Recognize that riding a century in January is unusual. We congratulate you on accepting the Stagecoach Challenge. It's not an easy century, and weather can make it treacherous. Plan your ride, and ride your plan! Take it in small bites, Rest Stop-to-Rest Stop, or even hour-to-hour. Cold, dry desert air can dehydrate you before you know it. Rising afternoon temps will take a toll too. Drink and eat at every Rest Stop! Don't exceed your limits. You may safely turn around at any point on the course. Don't compare your June cycling to the January Stagecoach, they're two different animals. If this is your first Stagecoach, avoid fixation on making it to the turnaround. You need to have enough reserves to ride all the way back to the Finish. Watch out for each other, point out obstacles, stay to the right, ride single file, and be safe out there!
Key Stagecoach Century Information:
a. Final Rider Instructions & Course Map: Please study carefully. Download here.
b. San Diego Waiver Form: Save time at packet pick up! Please print out, complete, date, sign, and bring to Fri/Sat packet pick up. Download here.
c. Driving Map: Basic map showing location of Ocotillo, CA. Download here (don't confuse with Ocotillo Wells, which is over 60 miles away).
d. Rider Levels: No-nonsense advice & tips for a variety of Stagecoach rider levels, Click here.
Packet Pick up Details: Friday and Saturday options. Riders may pick up friends' packets with written permission, such as a printed email authorizing release.
a. Fri, Jan 15, '16: Noon - 8:00 P.M. at Host Hotel,
Hampton Inn San Diego - Downtown, located at 1531 Pacific Highway, San Diego, CA 92101 (map it). Free 10-min parking. Riders may register in-person, Cash or Credit Card. Please call Nicole Perry at 619-652-4904 to book rooms at a Stagecoach Special $149 rate, plus tax, based on availability. Offer ends Jan 1st, '16, but may be extended if excess hotel rooms are unbooked.
b. Sat, Jan 16, '16: 6:00 - 9:00 A.M. Ocotillo Community Park, 266 West Imperial Hwy, Ocotillo, CA 92259 (map it). Riders may register in-person. Cash or Credit. Portajohns are available onsite. Arrival coffee & breakfast is provided by Ocotillo Volunteers. Donations are much appreciated & support the Desert Museum.
c. What to do at packet pick up:
* Complete San Diego Waiver & drop in Waiver Box
* Locate your Bib # on the posted Rider Lists
* Pick up Rider Packet
* Have ID ready
* Rider packet contains: Helmet #, wristbands, rider instructions, and map. Riders also receive a Custom Pin & pre-ordered optional items. Medals are given at Finish Line.
Upgrades: Riders may upgrade from Short Course to Long Course on Fri or Sat. Cost is $15.
Host Hotel: Shadow Tour welcomes the Hampton Inn San Diego-Downtown as the new Host Hotel for the Stagecoach Century. Hampton Inn offers Stagecoach riders special rates, based on availability. Click here for details.
Detailed Driving Directions: Here's a link to Googlemaps and a basic map showing the location of Ocotillo, CA. Caution: Do not confuse with "Ocotillo Wells", which is about 60 miles away from the Start/Finish!
Ocotillo Exit off Interstate 8: From the west, it's the Ocotillo exit right after the Calexico exit. From the east, it's the Ocotillo/Imperial Hwy exit.
Vol's/signs will guide you from the freeway exit to the Ocotillo Community Park approximately 2 miles north on S2.
Restrooms in Ocotillo: Portajohns will be positioned at the south end of the parking lot at the Ocotillo Community Park. Sanitizing gels are available. If operational, two restrooms are available on the west side of the Community Park building.
Weather: Forecasts will be posted on the website starting approximately one week prior to the event.
a. Variable conditions: Weather in the desert WILL vary widely. Expect winds to shift around all along the route and to gust in the afternoon. The north end of the course is about 15 degrees cooler than Ocotillo, due to its 2,200 ft elevation.
b. Morning Chill: Regardless of forecasted high temps, it WILL be cold in the morning. See clothing below. We do not recommend sleeping in a car overnight. We've tried it in the past, the wind & cold temps make it very uncomfortable.
Clothing: Wearing the right clothing is almost important as drinking plenty of Vitalyte/water, and replacing carbs! Below is our recommended clothing plan:
a. Early A.M: It will be cold in the morning. We recommend starting with a high-tech base layer (not cotton!). A jersey, bib shorts, arm and leg warmers, or tights, a wind-breaker, light weight/medium weight full finger gloves. and shoe toe-covers.
b. Mid-morning: Most riders warm up on the 10.5 mi gradual climb up to Rest Stop 1, and down in the low elevations of Carizzo Badlands. Have faith, almost all riders feel much better once the sun rises!
c. Lunch: Shelter Valley is at mile 42. We recommend riding past the Community Center to the turnaround point before stopping for lunch. While eating lunch, remove outer layers. The main food area is heated. Don't camp out too long! If it's chilly when you start riding, put your outer layer back on. You should warm up before Rest Stop 7 (mile 75).
d. Late afternoon: Coming back through the low desert areas south of Agua Caliente and in the Badlands, if temps rise, you should remove arm/leg warmers, vest, and other outer layers. Be sure to re-apply lip balm and sunscreen on exposed skin. See Rider Levels for many more tips.
Key Time Cut-offs:
12:15 P.M. Scissors Crossing closes (mile 45)
1:00 P.M. All riders must be returning to Ocotillo
1:15 P.M. Lunch in Shelter Valley closes
5:00 P.M. Course officially closes
Time cut-offs insure riders are safely off S2 by 5:00 P.M. Darkness falls rapidly & temps plunge in the desert right at sunset. These deadlines are mandatory! All course support ceases at 5:00 P.M.
Bicycle Maintenance: Stagecoach is absolutely no place to take chances on any worn bike parts. If in doubt, get a tune-up. Ask your mechanic to replace any questionable parts, especially tubes & tires! Bike Shop Links: San Diego, Los Angeles, and Orange County. Traction Mobile Bike Repair will be at the Start in Ocotillo and roaming the course. Traction Bicycles owner, Matt McDaniel, can provide full tune-ups prior to the event at your home or office.
Frequently Asked Questions: Here's the link to learn more about camping, Rest Stop items, parking, etc.
Referrals: Please encourage your friends to join you at Stagecoach. You may pass along the special Holiday promocode
SPURS15 to new riders (see coupon below). The promocode provides a special 15% discount.
Voler is once again producing the optional Stagecoach jersey. Riders who ordered jerseys prior to the Nov 22, '15 deadline will receive them at packet pick up. A new process is now in place for riders to order the 2015 Stagecoach jersey directly from Voler, using this link. These jerseys will be mailed within 7 days, with free shipping. A small quantity of jerseys will be for sale at the event.
|2016 Jersey Front
|2016 Jersey Back
Rider Levels: All registered riders are encouraged to visit and read the website section "Rider Levels". It's a comprehensive resource for riders to learn about the course. Specific tips & advice are provided for a wide variety of rider levels and objectives. You'll also find a detailed course description & details relating to weather, including past weather data. Future updates will include your comments and suggestions.
Training: It's important to build up for the ride now. Translation: get those training rides in! With limited daylight, it can be challenging during the week. But, on the weekends, shoot for rides of 2-4+ hours.
Previous Stagecoach Weather:
2015: Warm temps 45-77F, variable winds 2-7 mph
Cool early A.M. start. Sunny & Mild. Photos.
2014: Warm temps 41-79F, variable winds 2-7 mph
Cool early A.M. start. Sunny & Mild. Photos
2013: Cool temps 36-55F, variable winds 1-9 mph,
Sunny with cold early A.M. start. Photos.
2012: Mild temps 43-68F, mild winds 3-5 MPH,
gusts to 10 MPH. Sunny & Nice. Photos
2011: Warm temps 46-79F, mild winds 3-8 MPH,
gusts to 8 MPH. Sunny & Warm. Photos
2010: Mild temps 49-74F, mild winds 3-5 MPH,
gusts to 10 MPH. Sunny & Warm. Photos
2009: Warm temps 45-82 F, mild winds 3-5 MPH,
gusts to 10 MPH, Sunny & Warm. Photos
2008: Warm temps 48-74 F, mild winds 3-9 MPH,
gusts to 15 MPH, Sunny & Warm. Photos
2007: Cold temps 28-42 F, mild winds 5-10 MPH,
gusts to 15 MPH, Some Sun/Cold. Photos
2006: Mild temps 48-65 F, sustained winds 10-12,
gusts to 20-25 MPH, Sunny/Windy. Photos
2005: Mild temps 50-70 F, mild winds 5-10 MPH,
Photos Galleries: A picture is worth a 1,000 words. Please visit the galleries from past rides to get a sense for the course and what the weather was like. Photos are courtesy of SCS Photoworks, Sport Action Photos, and Brightroom.
Stagecoach Course Preview (flash)
Referrals: Stagecoach is a unique event in many ways. Our #1 source of new riders comes from previous riders telling their friends. We are very proud of this. For 2015, more than ever, we need your referrals to encourage more riders to accept the Stagecoach challenge by registering for the event.
Below is a link to the Stagecoach Facebook page. We invite you to become a Fan of Stagecoach and invite your friends to join. It's a great way to share stories, post photos, and join discussions.
JL Design is a family owned and operated company that started back in 1983 in our garage. We now operate from our solar paneled factory in Santa Ana, California. Our garments are 100% cut, printed, and sewn in CA. We make high quality custom apparel for cycling, rowing, and track and field for teams and companies worldwide using recycled and Bluesign fabrics. We are known for quality and fit, offering custom sizing on every garment we make. We will have jacket, arm and leg warmers, jersey, bibs for sale. Check us out at
. Please visit our booth on Fri, Jan 15, at Early Rider Packet Pick-up. We'll have some great deals for Stagecoach Riders!
: Nite Rider is a Shadow Tour series Sponsor. Please friend us on Facebook and learn more about our complete line of Technical Lighting products.
Master Frame builder, Bill Holland, designs, measures, and builds your Holland bicycle optimized for your unique dimensions, geometry, and riding style. Call Bill, Charles, or Cody to learn more at 619-469-1772.
Hampton Inn San Diego-Downtown
: We're proud to announce the Host Hotel for the 2015 Stagecoach is the Hampton Inn San Diego-Downtown, located near the airport, with onsite temporary parking for riders to pick up packets on Fri, Jan 15, Noon - 8:00 P.M. Special rates may still be available, based on current room availability. Visit
for more details.
SCS Photoworks: Official Stagecoach photographer.
Traction Bicycles Mobile Repair: Will be at Stagecoach providing Mechanic & SAG support. Will also be at Friday packet pick-up. Traction Bicycles specializes in all bicycles, from a child's first bike to high-end tri-bikes. Call owner Matt McDaniel to set up an appointment at 619-379-5150. Traction Bicycles is 100% mobile and will come to your home or office. Stagecoach Special: Major Tune-up $80 (reg. $100).
Mother Nature provides the biggest challenges at Stagecoach, such as low morning temps, pesky variable & gusting winds, low humidity, and possible showers . Bring extra layers of clothing, including shoe toe covers and long finger gloves, just in case! Stay hydrated right from the start by drinking plenty of water & Vitalyte, both are available for resupply at all Rest Stops. And remember, the name of the game is forward progress! Avoid camping out too long at Rest Stops.
As always, please ride defensively with traffic, point out hazards & obstacles to your cycling buddies following behind you, stay to the right of the white line, be on high alert at all times, and always watch out for the unexpected!
Happy New Year!
Event Director/Managing Member
Shadow Tour, LLC
Editor's Note: Apologies, in advance, for any mistakes, typo's, oversights, or factual errors in this Newsletter. Visit shadowtour.com for corrections, if applicable. As always, I'll work to improve in the future. ~Jim
Rope in your "Last Chance" by registering now for the 12th Annual 2016 STAGECOACH CENTURY on Sat, Jan 16, '16 in Ocotillo, CA. We're pleased to offer a special discount to past Shadow Tour riders and members of the Interest List. Sign up Today & Save!
SPURS15 (all caps) when you register online. It's the last step, so be careful not to miss it. Active.com software is case-sensitive. The promocode is also valid for Mail-in and Walk-up Registrations. The discount applies to entry fee only. May not be combined with other offers, and is not retro-active.
Deadline for "Last Chance" is 9:00 A.M. PST Jan 16th!
Offer Expires: 9:00 A.M. (PST), Sat, Jan 16, '16