Thursday, June 30, 2011

tour of lake tahoe 6.30.11

Not used to doing this one alone but, hey, whatever works... Started from Incline Village about 8:45am and noticed the incredibly huge construction site at Lakeshore Blvd. & Hwy 28 - it looks like a hotel but is actually a private residence. The cool temps this morn made me glad to choose an old school wool jersey to ride in. Hwy 28 to Hwy 50 is still my favorite section and getting through South Lake was a bit challenging due to road work and striping. This was the 1st time I'd seen the big yellow bike sculpture there and a couple more too! South Lake is becoming very "bikey" and it's really good to see the number of bike rental places doubled since last summer. Is this a new bike boom? Stopped at the usual Camp Richardson general store for lunch but made my own wraps this time since there was a food handling "issue" last year but did buy an Arizona Iced Tea so I could use their porch for a relaxing break. Having forgotten the turkey jerky back home I moseyed across the street for a child sized Kona Coffee ice cream cup - wow, kids must be big these days... The hike/bike trail at this section of the lake is about the best and was quite crowded with many riders of all skills and abilities. The TA triple touriste crankset came in real handy for the climb up to Inspiration Point and the Emerald Bay viewing area. There was more road construction here and I was able to leap the pack of cars to be the 1st one to Eagle Falls where I stopped for the 1st time to grab some shots. What an amazing waterfall! More climbing to D.L. Bliss park and then the best downhill run of the day - whoo hooo... Rubicon area seems to be the most remote part but there are still many large residences and beautiful turquoise water beaches here. Ate my second wrap at Tahoe Pines and blew through Tahoe City for the climb to Dollar Hill - the view of wildflowers and lake on the back side was amazing. More road construction at Carnelian Bay so I stopped at Sierra Boat Co. to admire the Chris Crafts in the window for a minute. Required stop next in Kings Beach for more Kona Coffee ice cream fuel to make the Brockway to Crystal Bay hill climb. From stateline it was the home stretch and I had "headin' for the barn" syndrome - fast as possible & no stopping. Hooked up w/my peeps going up Village Blvd. home ~ 5ish...

more pics here:

'til next time, "Have a Nice Ride"...

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Tahoe City to Squaw Valley out & back ride 6.29.11

This ride was on the Truckee River Bike Trail - an easy, pleasant & scenic route only for bikes and hikers. There were a few wet spots from last nights rains but a really nice ride in our light jackets with temps in the 50's on this mid-summers day.

cold summer climb... 6.28.11

This was a training day for the ride around Lake Tahoe this week. Hopefully the rain will stop tomorrow... Very cool & windy made this ride seem a lot easier than last year. Lot's of snow around 8000' and I saw the lowest recumbent ever riding down the mountain as I was climbing. An 18 wheeler honked as I pulled down on an imaginary line - waved as he went by headed for Carson City. Stopping at Tahoe Meadows I noticed the road was closed due to snow. At this point the cold wind was penetrating my flimsy plastic kit. Made it to the top, ate an orange, then headed back down the mountain. The descent takes so long I need to stop a couple times to get some feeling back in the fingers. In the drops the entire time due to gusty head & crosswinds. Started raining in earnest a couple hours later.

more pics here:

'til next time, "Have a Nice Ride"...

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

visalia valleycat!

This past weekend was the Visalia Valleycat. As far as events in California go this one was a bit off the beaten path but that didn’t stop riders from coming out and competing. They had both road and fixed categories racing and it looks like everyone had a great time. Check out more photo’s here.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

thoughts on light, shadows, fenders and bay laurel

OK, yes, another:

but it's still not boring. This was a picture perfect day to ride in the Santa Cruz mtns. Perfect temps, no wind, light traffic but the 2nd forested section on hwy 236 past Big Basin park was almost completely wet. Who would have thought you needed them this late in the Spring season but thank god for full fenders on bikes! The '74 Raleigh Pro was never supposed to have them but P-clamps work wonders where dropout eyelets cease to exist.

The great weather and relative comfort of this ride got me thinking of things besides my sore muscles, namely light and shadows and how I compensate for the interplay.

It occurs to me that when I ride I'm constantly aware of the sun and it's relative location. I don't like riding in the very early morn or late afternoon especially when the sun is low on the horizon and in my eyes. Because if it's annoying me I know it is blinding the driver approaching from behind with a dirty windshield. Will he see me enough to keep me safe? Mid day is best when the sun is most high and glare is minimum. How about going from light to shadows? I always find that I'm consciously trying to stay in the light on the road as opposed to the shadows, at least when I hear a car approaching from behind. I realize when I'm in a car that if I'm in the light it is very hard to see anything on the road in front of me in the shadows, mostly due to sun induced windshield glare. So to avoid the Christines while cycling I'll always attempt to be in a sunny spot on the road to give the driver a chance to see me whether he's in sun or shadow.

Have you ever been close to bonking and out of food in bay area mtns? If so look for Califonia Bay Laurel trees. You can crush the leaves and take a big sniff and it's almost like smelling salts. It'll wake you enough to keep going just a little further. Bay Laurels are shy trees but do like filtered sunlight so look for them between oaks or redwoods in the forest but PLEASE avoid the poison oak when you're stomping around out there. "Leaves of three, let it be..."

'til next time, "Have a Nice Ride"...

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Memorial Day ride to Big Basin

Another one of these:

Perfect weather for the holiday and low traffic on hwy 9 made for a memorable ride on my now "normal" exercise/pleasure route. The Cali wildflowers are in full bloom and getting more lush from all the recent rains. Hwy 236 as it approaches hwy 9 has noticeably deteriorated though so be careful and slow down in this area. Hwy 9 as always was a blast to ride into B.C. and this day was no exception. I've decided the '74 Raleigh Pro, formerly a "commuter" bike is now a randonneur and is living up to it's new role very well.

'til next time, "Have a Nice Ride"...