Devil Mountain Double is officially cancelled for both the staff ride (18 April) and public ride (25 April). I believe this is the right decision and the responsible one to make due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are all in this together and have to break as many transmission links as possible. This is for the safety of the cycling community, our families, and any others that putting on these type of events requires. Even in the newly implemented smaller format for DMD, it would pose the gravest types of risks because these events bring together riders from all over the state of CA and sometimes even other states.
We did not base our decision on what any government entity had demanded, although we are certain that they would and should force us to cancel these events. Our decision is consistent with all current public health recommendations from WHO, CDC and CA Dept. of Public Health. Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, through which DMD passes, are among the 6 counties in CA with probably the earliest and most stringent public health requirements to address this crisis. Their requirements recognize the importance of exercise for health. While riding a double century is not an essential activity, exercise is, and they recognized that allowing exercise outdoors while maintaining social distancing to be important. Hopefully as other government entities impose or strengthen their requirements they will follow this lead. So unless your local requirements are otherwise, keep riding safely and maintain at least 6 ft. from any other riders. We hope to see you in the future under better circumstances. Registration fees will be refunded as I can get to it. Please be patient with me on this.
I feel such gratitude to all who ride our rides and even more for those who consistently give of their time and resources to make Quackcyclist events some of the best. I look forward to being together in the future.
NEWS FOR 2020 - Many changes.
In light of changing demographics and other reasons, I have decided to re-imagine both Knoxville and Devil Mountain Doubles. Essentially, the rides have become unsustainable in their previous formats. These rides mean much to me and I would like to see them go forward into the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, they cannot continue in the manner that has worked for a very long time. I feel that together we have created some of the best supported double-centuries on some of the best courses. It has been an incredible experience for me and for many others. Change can be difficult, but I feel it is necessary at this point and I hope that together we can keep these rides viable for many more years.
Going forward, there will be a Staff ride the first weekend, limited to 50 riders. Volunteers that work the Public ride will have registration priority for the Staff ride, but there will also be room for 35 to 40 paid non-staff riders as well. This ride will be very similar to our staff rides of the past. For the most part, we will continue to use our traditional rest stop locations, each run by 1 or 2 people, who will also drive SAG for a period before and/or after their assigned rest stop.
The following week will be our Public ride, also limited to 50 riders. Staff ride volunteers will have priority registration for the Public ride, but there will be 35 to 40 paid spots available for the Public ride.
There are several significant changes in the events themselves. Perhaps the biggest change for Devil Mountain Double is the location of start/finish. For 24 years, we had a generally good relationship with the San Ramon Marriott. Although a wonderful hotel in many respects, it was also quite expensive. We have also generally had a good relationship with Mt Diablo State Park, but the cost of being in the park during hours of closure was expensive. Also, although Mt Diablo was willing to open early (for a fee), there were many riders, particularly as we have gotten older and slower, that would have liked to start earlier. For many years, a lot of riders would finish between 1:00 and 3:00 in the morning -- some even later. Due to insurance requirements and other factors, we are now striving diligently to close the course at midnight. Moving start/finish to Livermore is very helpful with all of these factors. The biggest downside with a Livermore start/finish is that we will have to use a modified course, very similar to last year's "Lowland" course, and also similar to the course from two years ago necessitated by various road closures. I know that not climbing the backside of Hamilton and Sierra road takes away "all the fun" (true story), but I do believe it is still an excellent course. The traditional course is my personal favorite of all DC courses that I have ridden, and I have some ideas about how I could incorporate those pieces as a "Highland/Traditional" option in the future, but that will have to wait for another year.
I will continue to be the Executive Director for the time being, although I will be looking to transition this role within the next 3 years. This job basically involves obtaining permits and coordinating volunteers for the 2 weekends.
There are 13 specific volunteer assignments for each day of the ride. One is for both Friday and Saturday -- the Quack Van / Ride Director for the day. One assignment is for ride prep on Friday, working with the Ride Director. Dedicated SAG - 1 is the first half of the course on Saturday. Dedicated SAG - 2 is the second half of the course on Saturday. The other 8 rest stop assignments vary between 8 and 11 hours the day of the event. Each position would require one person, but could accommodate two, especially if the two wanted to work/drive together. We are also working to continue to have HAM radio support at each key location.
Volunteers will continue to receive a discounted entry (currently -0-) to the ride for which they are not working. The one assignment that would allow a volunteer to work and still ride either weekend would be the Friday prep assignment.
I’m excited about this change. I think it will work, but only time will tell. The plan will require a minimum of 12 volunteers each weekend. For the 1st three weeks of registration, 15 spots for each ride will be reserved for those volunteers desiring to ride. In other words, if you work, the “public” ride, you can ride the “staff” ride, and vice versa. After the initial three weeks, any “volunteer” spots will be made available to others that are interested.
This is a work in process. I’m sure there will be additional changes as we move forward and learn what works and what doesn’t.
The course starts and ends at the Best Western Plus Vineyard Inn at 7600 Southfront Rd, Livermore, CA 94551. A short 3.7 miles out you make a right turn from Greenville Rd onto Tesla Rd. 2 miles further east (at the intersection of Tesla and Mines), you will officially be on our previous "Lowland" course headed for Sunol and Rest Stop #1.
After leaving Sunol you will descend Niles Canyon, turn right under an old railroad bridge and begin your climb up Palomares Canyon. You will climb a little over 1000 feet in about 4.5 miles and descend almost the same amount in the next 7 miles before turning right and beginning your climb up Crow Canyon, which leads you to your last tough (but short) climb over Norris Canyon Road. The Norris Canyon climb rises 530 feet in 2.1 miles to the summit at 910 feet. From there, it's just 3 miles of descending into San Ramon. There will be a rest stop in San Ramon - location still TBD.
Upon leaving San Ramon, you will encounter some small hills and large rollers that take you to the base of Mt. Diablo. The mountain rises 3200 feet in 10.5 miles to a height of 3849 feet. The last two tenths of a mile are optional and known as "THE WALL". Because we are there later in the morning than in the past, Rest Stop #3 will be in the lower summit parking lot. I would recommend that you go all the way to the summit as the view is spectacular on a clear day -- you can even see snow in the Sierras. Please be very careful on the descent. The speed limit ranges between 15 and 30 for a reason. This is a technical descent with many blind corners. Any cyclists cited by a park ranger will receive an automatic disqualification for the ride.
One other important note regarding Mt Diablo. The park is officially closed between sunset an 8:00 AM. You many not jump the gate at the bottom. Doing so will result in automatic disqualification. If you are there before 8:00 and the gate is open, you may proceed, but otherwise will have to wait until the gate opens. Please plan your start time and ride pace appropriately to arrive at the gate no sooner than 8:00. This is very important. We have a great relationship with Mt Diablo and really need to keep it that way.
After leaving Mt. Diablo it will be a few miles and some minor climbs before you reach your next major challenge. The Morgan Territory Road climb is mostly tree covered and quite beautiful, following beside a natural creek that should be flowing strongly as you pass by. This part of the ride could be a little chilly due to the abundance of trees covering the road. The road rises 1500 feet in 7.4 miles and is VERY steep in a few spots. Just shy of the summit, you will find the fourth rest stop at mile 98. This will also be our lunch stop. Going down the backside of Morgan Territory can be dangerous. The road is steeper than it looks. It is narrow and has a number of blind turns. Please watch your speed.
Now you will start to work your way over the Altamont to Altamont Raceway, and then back over Patterson Pass Road. One mile below Patterson Pass, will be a mini-stop/checkpoint, from which you can look up to the famous "Oh-My-Gosh" summit. Along the way you'll see many cows and a lot of windmills, before coming to rest stop number 6 at Mines Road. At this point, you have covered 137 miles. Shortly after leaving rest stop number 6, you'll begin the long gradual climb up Mines Road towards the Junction. This climb takes 25 miles to rise above 2000 feet through some beautiful country. If the rains have been on schedule, there will be many wildflowers and flowing streams along the way. Then it's a nice and easy 5-mile descent into "The Junction" at mile 161.
Turning around, you will head back to the Mines Rest Stop at mile 186 and the finish at mile 195.
TIPS FOR WHIPPING THE DEVIL
Most of the ride is rural, scenic, and low on traffic. The terrain is unspoiled and rugged. The ride will be held rain or shine. While the weather is usually nice at this time of the year with lots of wildflowers and green pastures, come prepared for anything. During this time of year the weather can be a little unpredictable, with everything from a heat wave to a heavy fog or even a spring shower being possible.
There is no shame in using a triple chain ring on this ride. In fact, we recommend it. If you don't bring a triple chain ring you should be equipped with AT LEAST a 39-26 or a 42-28.
Most riders on the DMD will need lights both in the morning and in the evening. Legal light is between about 6:00 AM and 8:00 PM this time of year. We no longer provide drop-bags. The good news is that the current light offerings are bright and light.
Rest stops are up to 35 miles apart. Plan accordingly. Please bring a MINIMUM of 2 large water bottles and keep an energy bar or banana with you between rest stops to guard against the dreaded bonk!
Start times are flexible. Recommended start time ranges will be published on the registration page. Please plan accordingly. The goal is to have the course closed by midnight.
BICYCLISTS MUST OBEY ALL LAWS! Riders may be disqualified from the event, lose Triple Crown credit for violations, and will never be allowed to enter one of our rides again. Center line violations and exceeding the speed limit are a special concern on Mt Diablo and Morgan Territory, not only due to their illegality, but also due to the risk to your life! We reserve the right to pull riders for any violations or to protect their own safety.
We have been using an online registration process for a long time. The changes to the event structure have necessitated changes in that process, and I'm sure there are still have a few bugs to work out. Please be patient and let me know if you encounter difficulties. This will be open soon. Once you've submitted your application online, you can pay either through PayPal or by sending a check to:
P.O. Box 2488
San Ramon, CA 94583
Please do not pay if you are on the wait-list. Online Registration will open soon
Once we receive and process your registration, we will send you an e-mail confirming we have you registered. Registration turnaround depends on how busy we are with our "regular" jobs & family life - registrations are processed on a more regular basis closer to the ride date. You will be sent a link to a web-page that contains “Instructions to Riders & Rules of the Ride”. It contains exactly that, as complete as we can make it. Hopefully it will cover all your questions, and give tips about the ride, a more thorough course description, and make clear the few “gotcha’s” we do have. Please read it carefully.
We will also post on the web a list of registered riders as we receive them. If you don’t get an e-mail confirmation and don’t see your name on the list a week after submission, please contact us. The week before the ride, we will likely send out a final e-mail detailing last minute-stuff.
No rider exchanges, transfers, or refunds
The Quackcyclists reserve the right to refuse entry to anyone, or to remove any rider from the course at any time for reasons of their own safety, the safety of others, or because it is, in our judgment, in the best interests of the ride, our sponsors, our volunteers, or the Quackcyclists.
Helmets are mandatory.
This is a timed tour, not a race. Riders are responsible for checking themselves in at each rest stop. Our main concern is for your safety. To help accomplish this we need to know where you were and at what time.
Riders who abandon must notify a course official ASAP.
Private SAGs. We don't allow personal SAGs and Any rider with a private SAG will be disqualified and will lose Triple Crown credit. We do however welcome Volunteers.
All riders and volunteers must sign the release form that will be emailed and/or available at check-in, or they will not be allowed to participate. This is an absolute requirement.
Check in Saturday from 3:00am - 6:00am. No one will be allowed to start after 6:00. The start is “open”, meaning any time after 3:00 Saturday morning. However, all riders must be off by 6:00 a.m. Please use an earlier starting time if you are concerned at all about making the cutoffs - see route sheet for rest stop opening and closing times. Preliminary Route Sheet
WHAT IF I'M HAVING AN "OFF" DAY?
The time cutoffs on the route sheet are intended to provide a pre-midnight finish. If at any point during the day you find yourself falling behind the cutoffs, there are always at least a couple options:
(1) Offered a ride back to the start /finish. This would typically be with one of the rest stop workers, so you may need to be patient. As you likely don't have anything else planned for the day, this shouldn't be a problem.
(2) Offered a SAG forward on the course. Although you would not get double-century credit, you could still end up with a wonderful day on the bike. In my earlier years, I would have thought this a crazy option, but once had an opportunity to take this option and had a wonderful time seeing parts of the course I had never seen before as it had always been after-dark for me in the past.
(3) There are several "bail-out" options that we can share with you if you really want to finish under your own power. The most straight-forward comes between Rest Stop #'s 4 and 5. You will actually pass within a half mile of the hotel at approximately mile 110.
In any of these scenarios, please make sure and communicate with at least one ride volunteer. It would be super helpful if you also text the Ride Director for the Day. That number will be published on the route sheet. Please don't make us spend limited resources looking for you when you're okay.
In any of these options, you can still have a good day of riding, but just won’t be an official finisher.
Accommodations - The Best Western Plus Vineyard Inn is the site for the start/finish. A limited number of rooms are available at a special rate of $139/night for a king or $149 for 2 queens (up to 2 people/room - $10 more for each person above 2) plus applicable taxes. To reserve these rooms at these prices, you simply call the hotel at (925) 456-5422 and tell them you would like the Devil Mountain Double Room Block. These rates are available up until 30 days before reservation date. I would suggest you make your reservations by March 15th.
The Executive Director is Scott Halversen.
Special thanks to everyone who makes this ride possible. This ride would not exist but for the support of countless individuals (and their families).
QUACKCYCLISTS AND OTHER VOLUNTEERS
Quackcyclists are not a club. We have no dues, no membership rolls, no formal meetings. We are just a group of friends & cyclists who somehow got this crazy notion to put on a couple of bike rides. We are not formally “non-profit”, but we don’t make any, and none of us gets paid. (We all have regular jobs for that.) The entry fee covers the ride’s expenses, and on the occasional times the rides actually make any money, we give it away to charities & cycling organizations.
Our volunteers & workers on the rides are our friends, folks we’ve met riding, and their friends & family. We have always managed to pull it off, and most folks have a great time (sometimes better than the riders) helping out. The re-imagined format requires substantially few volunteers than we have needed in the past, but there is still a minimum of 12 for each event. Volunteers can receive a complimentary entry into the ride the opposing weekend if interested. It is important to sign up early as the "staff" slots will be released to paid-riders at some point. Volunteer Information
25th ANNUAL DEVIL MOUNTAIN
DOUBLE CENTURY RIDES
Cancelled for 2020.
April 18th (staff) & 25th (public), 2020
In all our years, our most requested products have been from Hammer Nutrition. They have been a huge support to all our events over the years and we are very grateful to them again this year. You can find out more information about their products on their website.