MURPHYS — Mr. Frog’s Wild Ride offers bicyclists of various abilities three different routes to savor the spring charms of the Sierra foothills.
The rides take place Saturday, May 6, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. with the start and finish at Feeney Park.
Three routes are offered:
WILD: A 55-mile route with a $75 entry fee featuring 6,080 feet of elevation gain. Give yourself six to eight hours to finish this wild ride. Eight Category 5 hill climbs, one Category 4, and one Category 2 through gorgeous country.
MEDIUM: A 42-mile route with a $55 entry fee featuring 4,600 feet in elevation gain. A challenging ride with seven category 5 hill climbs and one category 2, but 60 to 75 minutes shorter than the Wild ride. It offers best of new roadway pavement.
A NEW SHORT ROAD: A scouting trip along San Domingo Road found that the short cycling route through the valley had degraded during rough winter storms, with portions of the road washed out or heavily rutted.
“It’s still a beautiful route,” said Maggie Sloan, communications director and registration manager for the ride. “But it’s probably not safe for a bicycle event like Mr. Frogs.”
Instead, ride organizers Susan Lyneis and Pete Maurer opted to design a new short route that skipped the rough patches of San Domingo and offered a more cycling-friendly route. According to Lyneis, the new route is “close to town but it feels far away.”
Starting at Feeney Park, cyclists on the short route will head out Six Mile Road then turn around and cycle back through Murphys. From Murphys they’ll descend Murphys Grade Road to French Gulch Road which will loop them back to Murphys and Feeney Park in time for lunch by chef Laura Lowell of Vida Buena Farms.
Maurer, who also participates in the ride, added, “The best part and the reason we chose it is because it’s got good pavement and not a lot of traffic. It’s all pretty nice. The roads have been recently repaved. It’s got enough hills to be challenging—it will be interesting enough and challenging for all riders.”
Lyneis pointed out that this shorter route is perfect for those with electric assist bikes. In fact, Pedego Electric Bikes in Elk Grove has offered 25 percent off rental fees of their e-bikes for all participants in Mr. Frog’s Wild Ride. Those who are interested should call 916-829-2813 to arrange a rental.
SAG wagons will be available to rescue worn-out cyclists on all routes, but riders should honestly assess their capabilities, and that, once on the road, ride slowly and enjoy yourself. It’s a ride, not a race. Along the way, riders will find fully-stocked rest stops; restrooms will be available. Riders should be off the course by 3 p.m.
A fundraiser for Feeney Park — a community resource managed and supported solely by volunteers — Mr. Frog’s Wild Ride relies on the community to make this a successful event. Volunteers will be needed for everything from check-in, to food prep, to ride safety.
Register in advance for Mr. Frog’s Wild Ride online at www.mrfrogswildride.org so that you can start your ride early on Saturday. You can also register Friday, May 5 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., or on the day of the event between 7 a.m. and 8:45 a.m.