A 42-year-old man from La Mesa died Saturday morning while taking part in a grueling bicycle ride in the Sierra Nevada, about 60 miles from Fresno, Calif.
According to CHP, bicycling enthusiast Nicola Grossi was participating in the 36th Annual “Climb to Kaiser” bike ride near Shaver Lake when he lost control of his bicycle, veered off an embankment and struck a tree around 10:30 a.m.
He was 85 miles into the ride when he took a sharp turn and crashed.
CHP said Grossi – a first-time participant of the Climb to Kaiser – died at the scene.
According to Bicycling Magazine, this particular endurance ride is ranked as one of America’s toughest rides.
The ride website says the bicycling course is 155 miles in distance. Along the way, cyclists gain 13,500 feet of elevation.
The website warns: “The Climb to Kaiser is not an easy ride. How much you enjoy the ride will depend on your training in the months prior to the event. The Climb to Kaiser riders should be able to complete a century with 8,000 to 10,000 feet of climbing in 8 to 10 hours. We suggest that each rider have a bicycle in excellent condition, carry two water bottles and tools for doing your own minor repairs.”
On Sunday Grossi’s father told NBC 7 San Diego that his son began biking professionally two years ago and was already doing long races with steep hills much like Climb to Kaiser.
His father said Grossi leaves behind many loved ones, including a wife and two stepdaughters.