Sunday, March 24, 2013

Back With A Ride Report

Hello there!  Flash here, back after a long hiatus intergalactic journey through time and space.  I can say that literally as I work at a space and science center.  But I will add that the journey was merely virtual, compliments of our planetarium and computer technology.  The end result is the same, only the reverse of relativity has occurred---I've aged while the people of Earth have remained the same.  Or so it seems to me somedays.

Yes, I am still riding my bike(s).  Here is evidence of that as I took my camera along yesterday on a splendid, magnificent ride in Northern California's rugged coastal mountains.  Let's start, shall we?

click the pics for a larger view

That's me, looking at you, three weeks ago, but close enough.  Photo: Bruce

Often referred to mystery TA photographer Bruce Bothwell left, Ken Jones right, meticulously preparing.  Note the group up the street, who would depart without us setting up the major zeitgeist for the day.

International cyclist Sri paced me as we tried to catch the first group.  I didn't get my legs until mile 8 or so, and man, did that suddenly feel a whole lot better!

Our fearless leader this day, the famous Mad Kow aka Rovn Kow, aka "Rob" in full cow regalia.  Many of his bovine kin were spotted lazily grazing on this fine day. 

At around 9 miles we stopped at the Cheese Factory to figure out what went wrong as we never saw the first group, and we should have caught them, so yeah, they took a turn early on not on the route.

Heading north with Lucy and Ken, Rob out ahead

Bruce uses his trademark internal stowage system for stashing extra clothes

The always smiling and cheerful Lucy.  She was dishing out some vitamin D (pace)  the whole second half of the ride. 

This piece of road Flash approved!

Lunch stop in Tomales, mile 40 or so.  Old gas station turned into a bakery, see the old timey gas pump behind the benches?  Sri sniffs the air for cappuccino. 

A lot of people say life is too short, eat dessert first.  Sri and Bruce actually live by that creed.  Here they share gluten free chocolate cake.

The wayward first group had turned around and were behind us, here they roll in for well deserved rest and treats.

There was an informal classic car meeting in town, lots of eye candy to look at, and  this was my favorite, a former TR-6 with a hand made aluminum body.  This guy later passed us on the road and it sounded as good as it looks.

Heading south towards Marshall, 7 of us elected to climb the Marshal Wall, which is formally known as the Marshall Petaluma Road.

So this is The Wall, you can get some perspective if you look near the top you can see two riders.  It is a workout, but not the sufferfest everyone talks about, and we hit it at mile 50 or so.  Very scenic and pretty.
Near the top a car passed us, and a young woman "WOOHOO!" ed  us and yelled " I WISH I COULD BE DOING THAT WITH YOU!!  That meant a lot, we inspired somebody.

Taking a well deserved break at the Wall summit.  Still 10 miles to go into a headwind!
I seemed to have stopped taking pictures at this point.  I did take a nausea inducing video a little later, want to see it?  Ok, I warned you.

Ok...that... didn't... work.  I'll look into this and try to fix it.

So we finished the ride in Pt. Reyes Station at around 4pm, having started at 9am.  63 miles, 14.6 avg, 5,600' of climbing.  Ken is ready to punch out my bike computer, he refuses to believe that number, but I think its accurate.  I had a memorable day.  All new roads through gorgeous countryside, challenging terrain and sportive fellow riders.  It really doesn't get any better than this.  

Thanks for reading, and as always, keep pedaling!