Monday, April 28, 2008

~Sunday April 20th 2008 ride w/Randy Reidelbach~ Randy graciously hosted a ride last Sunday and he must've done the Indian anti-rain dance because the weather was perfect. The traffic from San Carlos to Windsor flowed like good wine making for an easy "early" start in the morning. From Randy's place in Windsor we rode out Pleasant Ave. to Chalk Hill Road - a few slight hills made for some fun, fast descents through this bucolic scenery. I had brought the Masi GC and it soon became evident that this was probably the wrong bike choice - the road surfaces are not quite as nice as on the peninsula (or maybe I just know the roads better there). "Mr." Colin Laing will be coming with me next time to Sonoma County. What WAS better, MUCH better than the peninsula was the (almost) complete lack of car traffic! Mama mia, I was in heaven...

From Chalk Hill Rd. we amble down Hwy 128 past the many notable wineries of Alexander Valley. Some of my favorite beverages come from this area and I'd never paid much attention. Now I know! A few barns near the Russian River had high water marks from past floods, the highest being 1937 (or was it 1964?). Wish we'd stopped at the Jimtown area - looked a bit touristy but interesting. Staying on A.V. Rd. we merged onto Healdsburg Ave. at the north end of, you guessed it, Healdsburg, famous of course for being the birthplace of my dear mother Jean Rose Lazzaroni. I hadn't seen the town of my grandparents for many years - it has changed. It's a bit "yupped up" but from the small part I saw, in a good way. We stopped at the Bear Republic Brewing Co. for a bite and a brew. I talked Randy into doing a Kinley Rd. - Magnolia Dr. loop so I could check out what the new owners had done to my grandparents place, liked what I saw. "The Ranch" part of the property is owned separately and Jim has taken out all the prune trees - I am guessing grape vines will be planted (ya think!?). We stopped at the house to reminisce a bit and then took off for the river part of the ride.

Out Mill Creek past the Fred MacMurray ranch is a beautiful grove of Redwoods up a little hill. Then more wineries came into view - Hop Kiln, Rochioli. City car kids stopped to pull grass and feed a horse at the fence. And still hardly a car on the road! I am used to fighting for my piece of transportation real estate - not necessary here, I could get used to this. We continued on Westside then over the Wohler Bridge (the only time the Russian River was visible) and reversed our course on Eastside Rd. back towards "civilization". This part of the ride was real pretty and we saw many gentlemen's estates and ranches and a pretty large commercial dairy. Smelling the HUGE pile of feed it's easy to figure out why milk tastes like that. Then we turned right and headed back into Windsor. Back at Randy's place I think we figured it was about 40 miles. Thanks for a great ride, my friend!

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