I got in to LOTOJA this year… followed by excitement and fear. Who else is going? I’m i the M 45+ Ride (not race). Just have one friend along for the ride. If anyone is in the same group and wants to share the work, let me know. Already had my plan built around this race, so mostly happy to get in. Planning on adding a couple of fondos in June and July (Cache). This race has been on the pod a few times, but doesn’t seem to generate much discussion here. I’m looking forward to trying to complete another stupid hard/long race.
Hi Chris, I did most of Lotoja in 2021. Couple of things I can say with certainty.
- Expect nothing in regards to weather. Forecast looked good all week, until the day before when the meteorologist said showers were supposed to come through over night. The showers took their time, and from 6AM - 7:30AM it was pouring rain, and chilly. The rest of the day turned out absolutely lovely.
Elevation is a real thing. The three climbs of Lotoja get pretty high in elevation. My sea level power probably would have gotten me up most of the climb with the main group however my power at 6000+ feet meant I got dropped pretty early in the climb. While you aren’t racing, blowing up on a climb because you paced it based off the wrong power numbers at mile 50 will come back to bite you late. How do I know? See #3.
Somewhere between mile 180-190 there has been a detour the last couple of years that takes you across a sketchy bridge. You will know it when you get to it, and the RD will probably warn you about it. 5 miles before I got to this bridge, I was exploding catastrophically. I was struggling to put out 150 watts. Every little climb was painful. Across the bridge I saw a steep little kicker, and kept as much speed across the bridge as I could. Being mentally fatigued, my tire came off the wooden portion of the bridge into the gravel, and I went down hitting my head on a steel bridge railing, and had to pull out. The next section of road was back on the highway, I was exhausted and had just hit my head pretty hard. It didn’t feel safe to continue.
The whole experience is amazing, and being able to do it with a friend is even more awesomeness. Hope you have a blast like I did.
@Jerrodg - I read your post last year. It sounds like you had an amazing experience. They warn about the bridge in the race documentation, but your experience brings it to life.
I live in SLC, so my w/kg is closer to Lotoja elevation, and there are plenty of high climbs here.
I figured you might be back in the mix this year. Maybe we all do it in 2023… although I am thinking of doing Crusher then to complete my Utah hat trick (Lotoja, PCP2P, Crusher).
I rode Lotoja in 2020 and got that out of my system . It’s a great event, just bigger than I want to tackle again. Maybe in a few years? It takes time to forget.
That bridge is super sketchy! And the gravel downhill leading up to it (as I recall) is no joke.
I rode it with a cycling buddy who had done it a few times before. If I hadn’t had someone to ride with I doubt I would have had the mental fortitude to get back on the bike after stopping at mile 150.
I’ll be at the Cache Fondo in July.
Me too! 100-mile loop as a warm-up between build and specialty.
I rode PCP2P with a guy last year who took 5 years to “forget” and try it again. That’s motivation to finish the first time.
I plan to do it again, but not for a couple of years. There are so many other cool races I want to do first, like Gila and Baker City. Maybe 2025.
I did Lotoja in 2020 and 2021 with some friends and this will be my first year doing it alone. Both of my riding buddies had some personal things come up that will make it difficult to devout the time for training this year.
The training I have done in the last couple of years included a 100 miler in June, a 120 miler in July, and a 140 in August. The time between those rides was filled with various distances and elevations sprinkled in based on how we felt.
I want to be more prepared this year and take the training a little more seriously so I’m hoping TR will help with that.
Good luck on the ride, maybe I’ll see you at the starting line. I’m also in the 45+ Ride category and wouldn’t mind sharing the work.
@bmhansen Once September arrives, we should discuss meeting up at the start line (or day prior). Can I ask your info and approximate finish time? I’m guessing it will be 11-11:30 for me based on experiences of friends and some here in the forums. I am currently sitting at 3.3 w/kg. I have a 104-mile race in July. Not sure if I want to race in August or just focus on intervals, rest, and some longer weekend rides.
Hey @Chris47 yeah I’d love to connect with you and even ride a time or two together before September. My approximate finish time is right on what you guessed… 11-11.5 hours. The first year I did it in 11:40 and the last year was 10:57. I’m not looking to take too much time off my time, and love just being able to finish without a bonk or mechanical issue.
I have no idea about my w/kg. I’ve never tracked it and don’t have any idea what is a good range. I’ve just never tracked it. I am more of a ride by how I’m feeling type of rider. I’m following a structured TR plan though leading into Lotoja with hopes of learning more about watts and increasing my overall power and endurance.
Here is my Strava Profile if you want to connect there. It may be best to connect there on any future rides leading into the race if that works for you.
Just gave you a follow. Assuming my estimates of my own ability are accurate, we should be rolling at a similar pace in September. Sub-11 would be amazing, but my first goal is to finish.
Cool sounds like we’ll be similar. Let’s stay in touch and see how things go leading up to the race and try and get a ride or a few in together prior to the start line.