Category Archives: Ride reports (not Tu/Th)

Ride reports for everything *but* the Tuesday-Thursday morning ride

So about that Star Wars movie…

First things first. Sunday Kevin and I did ride; couldn’t be a long ride, since the shop was open for biz yesterday (final Sunday before Christmas for some extra hours). The plan was to do a run up Old LaHonda, down the other side and back up West Alpine. The plan was changed when it started to get damp up on Skyline and when we dared to look at the weather map on our phone, it was showing some ugly stuff heading our way. So, back down 84 and then proceeded to do “the loop” through Portola Valley. Not bad; kinda fun seeing people out on their bikes on a dreary day but all-smiles. It was Kevin who noticed that; everyone really did seem to be enjoying themselves on their bikes. Not too many contorted faces from Strava angst.

And now, about the movie. We did the family thing and saw a 7:50pm showing (not sold out by the way; pretty easy to get decent seats, but we had pre-purchased the tickets several days ahead of time).

If you liked the original three Star Wars movies, and simply want more of the same, you’re going to like what JJ Abrams has done for the franchise. Which is, really, very little new. It’d done really well, and I think the new generation seeing the series is going to be thrilled. The older generation who saw it so many years ago will be happy their memory is still intact enough to say “Wow, this looks familiar.”

In a nutshell, I can’t wait for a couple months to pass so I can write about the movie without spoiling it for anyone. There are so many things to talk about, each of which would give away key plot points. We’ll talk soon.  –Mike–


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Kevin’s on Fire; I’m playing the role of the anchor

World's best Chicken Club sandwich (maybe one of the best sandwiches of any type), another Cookie Face Test, and Mastadon Down.
World’s best Chicken Club sandwich (maybe one of the best sandwiches of any type), another Cookie Face Test, and Mastadon Down.
It was time to finally get a decent ride in, first “long” ride since returning from Africa over two weeks ago. Or was it three? Whatever, life has conspired in a number of ways to keep me from getting in a really challenging ride, but that was going to end today.

Reverse Pescadero plus West Alpine. That’s normally not that big a deal; 67 miles, 6300ft of climbing. But normal hasn’t described the last few weeks, including my weight, which is 6 lbs above my “summer weight” and 2 lbs above the heaviest my “winter weight” should ever be. And then there’s that sudden move from mild temps to just plain cold.

Add to all that Kevin somehow really coming into his own, getting faster again on the climbs and generally running me into the ground. And yet, it was still a good ride. Much warmer than Thursday morning (maybe waiting until 10:45am to ride had something to do with that?), just a very mild headwind going out to the coast, slight tailwind heading south on Stage to Pescadero, the usual great food at the Pescadero Bakery… what’s not to like?

Well, Haskins Grade for one. Yes, it’s gotten steeper since I last rode it! And by the time we got to West Alpine, my legs had been used up. Kevin was in a mood to fly, so off he went. I’d keep looking ahead for him, on those sections where you could see a minute or two up the hill, but I quickly lost him. I still managed to do the West Alpine section in a bit under 48, but it was a really, really, really ugly climb, if you know what I mean. He was attacking with style. Had he not stopped to take photos of a Coyote on the way up, he likely would have had 39-something instead of 42.

It was good to finish with really fried legs. That painful feeling later in the day when walking down steps, that tells you yes, your legs got a workout today. Paraphrasing a Klingon proverb, it was a good day to feel like your bike killed you.

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