Cycling Shirley Meadows West
A very long climb at 25 miles, gaining 5,574’ at 3.7% average grade.
This southern Sierra Nevada bike climb begins in the rural and tiny town of Woody (2008 population 135) which is located in the foothills of the Greenhorn Mountains 25 miles north-northeast of Bakersfield. The last 2.2 miles at 5.3% of the climb overlap the Shirley Meadows East climb. Shirley Meadows East approaches Rancheria Road (the road to Alta Sierra Ski Area) from the East and Shirley Meadows West approaches from, you guessed it, the West!
Hwy 155 is in excellent shape as of November, 2019.
Junction of Rancheria Road and Hwy 155 - 2.2 miles at 5.3% left.
Summit Station just off Hwy 155
Ron Hawks summary:
This is a fun climb that is more challenging than the stats indicate due to the length. Much like most of the climbs that start on the western slopes of the Sierras, the scenery is pretty sparse but improves as you rise into lush alpine settings above 5,000 feet.
I've done this climb in the summer and the lack of shade can be a real problem for the first 10+ miles. If you can start this climb early in the day, you will be glad you did.
Roadway surface and traffic: Hwy 155 is in excellent shape as of November, 2019 and the climb has minimal traffic and is safe.
Ron Hawks finishes the climb at Alta Sierra Ski Area