September 27, 2017 by Ramona d'Viola

We Want to Pump You Up!
The 27th Annual Konocti Challenge

Presented by Rotary Club of Lakeport – Saturday October 7, 2017 – Skylark Shores Resort – 1120 Main Street, Lakeport, CA

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Early morning along Clearlake Shores during the Konocti Challenge

It’s an early morning start for the Konocti Challenge 60- and 100-mile rides.

Anyone who’s ridden Lake County’s Konocti Challenge will tell you, it’s just a big party for a purpose – with proceeds benefiting the County’s most deserving causes. Now in its 27th year, our whacky, award-winning, Northern California bicycle tour has a ride for cyclists of all abilities. From leisurely to legendary – the “challenging” part is entirely up to you. This year’s routes range from gently rolling country lanes, fast lakeside straightaways, to breathtaking climbs with stunning vistas. Here’s what to expect:

The Konocti Challenge Century – 100 Mile Route
7:00am – 8:30am Start Time

It’s an early bird start for the 100-mile century. This epic ride requires solid fitness, a climber’s heart – and your best set of legs. Riders take a clockwise route around Clear Lake, heading south towards Middletown, then back up Cobb Mountain – where the real climbing begins. Riders gain 5,428’ in elevation, and well-deserved bragging rights when it’s all over.

“People who ride the century will say it’s not a competition,” says Jeff Cramer, owner of Lakeport’s Main Street Bicycles. “But if you ask them, they can usually tell you their time – down to the second! For any cyclist with a penchant for ‘bagging’ centuries, this is one for the bucket list.”

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The Konocti Challenge Metric Century – 65 Mile Route
7:00am – 8:30am Start Time

For riders who prefer cool, lakeside breezes with their nosebleed vistas, the “metric” century should fit the bill. This 65-mile ride also circles Clear Lake but heads north at Highway 29. You’ll miss out on the Cobb Mountain climbs, instead, ascending – and descending – the east side of the tour’s namesake – Mt. Konocti. With over 2,700’ of climbing, you’ll need solid cycling fitness – but not to worry – there’s plenty of rest stops – and a sag wagon should you cry “Uncle.”

The Konocti Challenge – 40-Mile Route
8:00am –  10:00 am Start Time

If you’re just looking for a couple hours of casual cruising and conversation with your cycling crew (for a cause, no less) – then the 40-miler is your weekend club ride away from home. This gorgeous, rolling route gains just under 1,000’ in elevation while winding through acres of vineyards, pear, and walnut orchards. If you’re over City traffic – you’ll love Lake County’s empty roads.

The Konocti Challenge Family-Friendly – 20 Mile Route
8:00am – 10:00 am start

And lastly, for the saner among you – the family-friend 20-mile ride offers a little bit of Lake County for everyone. Heading north from the start, enjoy the lake breezes before gently ascending Scotts Valley. This mostly flat ride tours meadows, beautiful canyons and a stint in the Big Valley. Less than 250’ of elevation gain, the climbs are gentle, with fun descents.

“I’m 13 years into my three-year commitment as the volunteer event coordinator,” laughs Jennifer Strong, of JE Strong Financial Network and Rotary Club member. “The Konocti Challenge is a huge community event that raises funds for a variety of causes, and we get to show people what Lake County is all about. It’s not a race – it’s a win-win for everyone.”

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We Put the Kook in Konocti

Feeling the burn during the Konocti Challenge

When you’re feeling the burn in your legs – the friendly, kooky, Konocti Challenge volunteers are here to help.

Lake County rolls out the “quirk” for the Konocti Challenge. When your legs start to “feel the burn,” not to worry – there’s a rest stop staffed by friendly volunteers willing to go the extra mile for you. Indulge in cyclist-friendly treats, a massage, or a madcap masquerade.

Be sure to cast your votes for the best rest stop. Year to year, even the organizers don’t know what to expect…

End your day with friends and family with a good old fashion barbecue feed and live music. You burned the calories, that’s for sure. Be sure to purchase additional meal tickets for non-riders.

For more information: www.konoctichallenge.com

 

It’s One Wild Ride