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Rosarito To Ensenada Bike Ride, Fall 2004

Story and photographs by Rolf Metzger (copyright 2005)

In the Fall of 2004 I had the opportunity to ride the famous Rosarito to Ensenada 50 mile fun bike ride. I regularly ride my road bike on distance rides and have been in organized rides in California in the past, so I felt this would be a great chance to finally participate in the ride and take some photos for the web site.

Rosarito Ensenada bike ride - Back of the line
On the morning of the ride my bus tour dropped everyone off a few blocks from the very end of the line. This is looking towards the start line, with about 6,000 to 8,000 people on bikes in view. I needed to work my way to the very front to pick up my ride number from the registration desk at the Rosarito Beach Hotel.

Rosarito to Ensenada bike ride - starting line
Just as I received my official ride number, the ride had begun. Friends and family cheered as their favorite riders went by, many of them dressed in crazy costumes just for the fun of it. As I was about to get ready to join the ride - Disaster! One of the brake pads on the front wheel was missing, and there was no way I was going to go on the ride, with it's many downhills, without front brakes.

Rosarito to Ensenada bike ride - repair stand
Luckily, a local bike shop had set up a repair stand for just such emergencies. After a short wait, one of the guys was able to help fix my problem. There were no brake pads for a road bike, but we put together some parts from a mountain bike, a few extra spacers, and we had something that was solid and would work. I was on my way for just 2 bucks. The only problem now was that everyone had already left and I was the absolute last person left standing at the starting line. Better start peddling!

Rosarito to Ensenada bike ride - leaving Rosarito
After a short while I was able to catch up to some of the riders and see part of the pack ahead, since this was a fun ride and not an all out race. What I noticed right away was the large crowd of spectators that showed up to support the riders. People were yelling, clapping and supporting riders the entire way, which made for a very fun experience.

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