The 2009 Traverse

Early Saturday morning RL, Ner and I met at my house.  We were going to cheer on our teammate Eric “The Animal” Hunner as he was racing in The Traverse.  What’s the Traverse?  Here’s a brief description:


Approximately 43 miles with 8K feet of elevation gain.  For those that are familiar with the Santa Ana Mtns, the ride starts at the end of Black Star Canyon Road at 7:00 AM.  Racers will ride up Black Star Canyon Road to the Main Divide Road.  At this point they will traverse the Santa Ana Mountain range via the Main Divide Road hitting all the peaks (including Modjeska and Santiago Peaks) until they intersect with the Trabuco Canyon Trail.   They then descend down the Trabuco Canyon Trail to Trabuco Creek Road and out 4 miles to the finish line at Trabuco Canyon Road. There are cut-off times which the racers have make, otherwise they are not allowed to finish the race. As you can see, lots of climbing and time is of essence…
After leaving my house we stopped for a quick breakfast at iHop.  Can’t cheer on an empty stomach J

Heading up to Beek’s we went up via Skyline Rd.  Tight fireroad all the way up the mountain which was rutted in several sections.  Reaching the base of Beek’s Place was a group of guys which I believe were the part of the Aid Station.  As I was getting out of the car, I hear one of them say “here comes the first rider”.  We got there just in time!

I started making my way up the hill to find a good spot for pictures when I heard a rider coming up behind me.  It was Manny Prado… If you recall, Manny Prado placed 3rd in the Leadville 100 last year behind Lance Armstrong. 

2E8J5818 low res by you.

Manny is a machine!  I turned around and snapped a quick picture.  I then headed up the hill to look for a spot to catch the rest of the racers.

Several riders later, I see Eric The Animal on his singlespeed.  To give you an idea how intense of a rider he is, see the sequence below as he passes a geared rider up the hill.

2E8J5897 low res2E8J5898 low res

2E8J5899 low res2E8J5900 low res

2E8J5903 low res by you.2E8J5906 low res

We’ll look forward to reading The Animal’s Race Report.

The Travers gets the best of many racers.  While most rode through this section, there were a few that had no choice but to walk their bikes.

2E8J6229 low res by you.                  You can see RL an Ner at the base of Beek’s.



Congratulations to those that participated.  It is quite an accomplishment!  More pictures can be found here

2E8J6231 by you.RL, Ner and I at Beek’s Place