We’re into the third week of the “new” protocols for visitors wishing to enter Camp Pendleton. As reported earlier, there are different process for different users, mostly related to whether the access is for business on the base, or for cyclists wishing to transit through the base and avoid riding on I5 between Las Pulgas and Oceanside Harbor.
Registration has been open since February 1. Starting March 1, only riders who have submitted the on-line form and have been approved will be permitted to ride through the base. The approval will be valid for one year. It’s expected that it will take one to two weeks for processing.
There’s been a little confusion in the cycling community about how you’ll know if you are good to go, and how some of the organized rides that pass through the base will be managed.
Here are some answers, via Camp Pendleton’s Director of Public Affairs Carl Redding.
Examiner: Is there any word on how riders will be notified that their applications have been received and approved?
Carl Redding: They will only receive notice if there is a problem.
E: Any specific time frame (as I recall it was expected to take a week or two)?
CR: It will take around seven days to process registration application. In some cases, it may take longer.
E:Is the base still accessible under the old process until March 1?
CR: All individuals requesting access to ride through Camp Pendleton in the month of February will be required to show a US or State Identification card as before.
E: Any thoughts on how this will affect the organized rides that transit the base, like the MS-150, Amtrak, and The Boob Ride? Will individual riders need to be screened and approved several weeks beforehand?
CR: All riders who are requesting access to transit the base will need to be registered. Large organized rides will need to register to access the base. Those organizations need to contact Base Access in advance of the ride to ensure they receive permission to have an organized ride through the base.
E: How many apps have you all received? Is it about what was expected, more or fewer?
CR: We have received over 4000 applications to date. The numbers have been consistent with earlier estimates.
E: If you only have a non-US issued ID, like a foreign passport, can you register?
CR: Those only possessing a foreign passport will not be able to register. They will need to be sponsored by an authorized individual.
E: For those who are concerned, is there a number that they can call to confirm approval before they show up at the base?
CR: Individuals can contact Base Access for more specific questions:
Business Hours: 0600-1600 Mon-Thurs. (closed Fridays)
So, to summarize: if you applied already, you will not get an email unless there’s a problem with your application.
Until March 1, if you want to ride through the base you will need a valid government-issued ID, like a Driver’s License or a Passport, which has been S.O.P. for years. The ID you present must be an exact match for the information you provided on the application. After March 1 you’ll need the same ID—but you must be in the data base of those granted the one-year clearance.
Riders with non-US Passports or IDs will have to arrange for sponsorship. It’s not clear as to who can be a sponsor—will it be anyone who meets the criteria that apply to cyclists, or must it be someone with military clearance and connections. Contact Base Access (as noted above) if this applies to you, or if you have friends from overseas who want to ride through the base.
If you haven’t yet registered, you might or might not squeeze in to the data base before March 1. After that, and to be on the safe side, give it two weeks from the time you apply before you show up at the gate.
Keep in mind that there may be times that the base will have restricted entry for everyone. If you show up and aren’t allowed to pass, there always that shoulder on I5. Which is about as pleasant as food poisoning, but over more quickly.
This change in procedure is going to affect the organized rides that pass through the base (and most likely the events that take place within Camp Pendleton’s confines).
First up this year, on Saturday April 16, is The Boob Ride. This will be the event’s seventh edition. From a start with 35 riders who were “Biking for Boobs,” it’s become one of the most popular early-season rides in OC and San Diego: last year volunteers in Pennsylvania created an East Coast version.
Founder Jennifer Carey and her team are wrestling with the new processes at Camp Pendleton, and here’s her view on how it’s working.
Examiner: This is your seventh “Boob Ride.” What’s changed for you?
Jennifer Carey: In the past, Camp Pendleton was accessible to all cyclists with a helmet and an ID. And The Boob Ride was categorized as a grassroots event that didn’t require a special permit.
Neither situation is true now. We’ve grown and Camp Pendleton’s policies, as we all know, have changed. Every rider needs pre-approval, and we are no longer under the radar. Luckily, the military supports our cause and the Camp Pendleton staff has worked closely with us to let us pass through the base.
E: What’s been the toughest adjustment?
JC: We must submit our entire roster two weeks before the event—which means The Boob Ride registration will close two weeks beforehand.
As to cyclists who aren’t registered but show up on the morning of the event expecting to signup…we will accept a donation, but not allow them to ride the event. We even are promoting an early registration discount before 3/1/16, in the hope that we can get this wrapped as soon as possible.
When I first contacted the base, I struggled to find the correct contact. However, once I was able to talk to the Assistant Operations and Training Chief, SSgt. Claybaugh, things became relatively easy.
I think Camp Pendleton is revamping their special event/permitting process, so I was glad to only have to send a roster of riders for base entry. Also, since we’re not using a facility or stopping inside the base, we are not required to have a special event permit.
In my experience, the base has been very cooperative and helpful. However, I get the feeling that they will strongly enforce the registration and entry permissions this year. While this is a bit of a challenge for us, we want to make sure that all our riders and the people on the base are safe, so we gladly do as the USMC requests. My dad is retired Major in the Army and many of our Boob Riders are from the EOD Warrior group, so we hold those who serve in high regard.
E: Aside from the changes made to accommodate the base, what’s new for 2016?
JC: This year we are having two rides on April 16 in So Cal. The OC Boob Ride starts at the Irvine Transportation Center and finishes in Solana Beach. The SD Boob Ride starts and finished in Solana Beach. The cyclists on both rides will meet up on the course and finish for the post-ride party and awards ceremony at Tidewater Tavern in Solana Beach. Each ride has a 30 mile, 60 mile, and 90 mile option with staffed pit stops, Boobie Cookies and other fun stuff. With the two rides together, we are looking at about 200 people (our Chief Marketing Boob says it will be 300+).
For more information about The Boob Ride, or to register, click on this link here: http://www.theboobride.org/2016-rides/orange-county-ca-2016/.