Wet ride, had to check out West Old LaHonda road conditions

An interesting ride; we thought we’d avoid most of the rain, as the forecast showed no rain between 8am until 2pm. That didn’t work out! We did wait a bit thinking the roads might dry out, but it began raining just 15 minutes into the ride. Well, at least we were on our rain bikes!

Our wish list ride would have been to head out to Stage Road and try to get to the part where a good section of it has just disappeared. Unfortunately, we weren’t in shape for a ride of that magnitude today, so we dialed back a bit, and combined checking out West Old LaHonda with an “ugly” ride.

Heading out Canada Road, we were surprised by the number of other cyclists out there in the then-mild rain. Also surprised how many cyclists are out in less-than-ideal weather (low visibility) and no lights! Saw that throughout the ride.

Old LaHonda was an exercise in ride-casual; we would have been just under 30 minutes if Kevin hadn’t had a small seizure on the way up. At the top we did spot the “bike frame up in a tree” that we’d been told about.

West Old LaHonda has a “soft” road closure; just a barricade that doesn’t quite make it all the way across the road and a sign. I suspect nothing will change until the county gets a handle on the many much-more-traveled roads that have also been damaged. If you want to ride West Old LaHonda, be very careful when you ride through all the debris on the road; those small branches can easily get tossed up into your wheel and bring you to a quick stop without warning. It’s possible to get your rear derailleur tossed into the wheel and actually break your frame. We’ve seen this at the shop.

It’s easy to get past the tree, and, so far, it’s easy to ride through the section where much of the road has given way, as you can see in the video at the top of this page.

Riding back up 84 to Skyline isn’t a whole lot of fun right now, with many areas where the hillside has slid down into the shoulder. Make sure you’re aware of cars behind you as you approach the many blind corners.

Heading north on Skyline is never, ever, fun. OK, maybe I remember a ride or two when I was in good shape and you could really apply power, but that was a long time ago. It got colder as we climbed, eventually getting down to about 38 degrees; fortunately, at that point, it wasn’t raining. But we were looking forward to much lower traffic than would normally be the case, due to the partial closure of Highway 92. A really good thing, it turned out, since it did start to rain again and it wouldn’t have been much fun with a lot of cars!

Most interesting thing on Canada Road was the largest flock of turkeys EVER, near the Filoli Estate. Normally we’d probably have stopped to take photos, but we were trying to stay warm and get home.

Just 37 miles (sure felt like more than that!) but we did give ourselves some brownie points for not cutting the ride short by heading down either 84 or Kings Mtn.

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