The Lost and Found is a gravel grinder, but it's a gravel grinder Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship style. Atypical of traditional race events, the goal is much greater than speed but rather is to send riders off to explore a new corners of the vast Lost Sierra. Ride fast and take chances or round up a group of friends and enjoy a ride that would be difficult to finish unsupported.
The 100 mile course is far from the fast rolling, graded farm roads typical what many people expect from a gravel race. If the views don't lure you to keep your head up, the rocky climbs and sandy turns are quick to remind you where you are. We had the full Squid Squad out for a weekend camping, playing, and racing in the Lost Sierra.
photos: Angel Perez
All aboard the Squid train from Sacramento.
Three hours and one lunch stop later we arrived to a brisk Lost Sierra afternoon ready for a high elevation shred. Never not skidding.You can make your way around Lake Davis almost exclusively on single track. Car camping means warm coin showers and cold beer.SquadSunsets and swings over Lake Davis.Chris making sure the bikes are dialed before Saturday's race.Anthony Clark makes his own lines.Emily party paced the 100 mile on a the single speed she and Chris live painted at Lost and Found 2 years previously. If you are familiar with California’s famed Downieville trail system and mountain bike race, you are familiar with the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship. They are responsible for restoring, maintaining, and building all the wonderful trails in the greater Downieville and Lakes Basin area. The full route covered ~100 miles and ~6,500 feet of elevation gain and was comprised of 65% dirt. Additionally, there were two shorter, 65 mile and 45 mile, options to make sure everyone had a challenging and fun outing. Sammi Runnels new machine. She ran SRAM Force 1 hydro with 38 front ring and 11x32 cassette, the new tubeless IRC 40mm Boken tires set up on Zipp 30 Course wheels, ENVE fork, Crankbrother Candy 7 pedals, Zipp cockpit with Service Course SL 80 44mm bars, White Industries headset, and a custom Squid / SDG Circuit Saddle. The race starts in morning waves with the 100 milers first in line. Squid Pros Sammi and Anthony going for the win while the rest of the Squad party paced the 100 mile course on single speeds. In its 5th edition, the race boasted a new course and new vistas. Sammi had a solid race in a stacked pro field crossing the line 4th with a smile.Third time's the charm. Anthony Clark took 2nd on the day, crossing the line 45 seconds behind the winner Tobin Ortenblad, both dirty, shelled and bloodied from crashes.Anthony Clark (Squid) 2nd, Tobin Ortenblad (Santa Cruz Factory) 1st, Carl Decker (Giant Factory Racing) 3rdWith 100 miles of single speeding in their legs.Sunday - leaving the Lake Davis to explore the Donner Tunnels.
The first railroad line to traverse the Sierra Nevada Range was built largely by Chinese workers and was hand drilled and blasted over a total of 15 months. Donner pass also has the distinction of being pass where the first wagon trail traversed into California.
Infrequent openings in the tunnels offer small areas of natural light and provide incredible views of the pass and lake below.
Donner Lake sit about 1000 feet below the over 7000 ft summit. Donner Pass was named after the Donner party whose adventure to California came to an infamous halt due to snowstorm. Artists come from all over to paint the tunnel walls.
Homeward bound with a bit less Sierra Nevada dirt.