I don’t know if a picture’s worth a thousand words, but it is hard to top them when they’re taken on our Tuesday & Thursday-morning rides.
Kevin (pilot), Eric, Karl, Karen & MarkP rode with me today, on a cool but not really cold morning. Hmm… we did spend a bit of time in the upper 30s, so guess I’ve recalibrated what I think of as cold! On Kings the group quickly scattered (sounds better than shattered), a few riding hard up ahead, a couple taking it easy behind, me in the middle pretending that’s where I wanted to be.
As you can see in the photo, it was another beautiful morning. Clear everywhere except for just a hint of fog on Skyline. Great views (again) of the coast from West Old LaHonda. The only thing to complain about was having to take it a bit easy descending 84, due to random wet patches of pavement.
What’s sad is that the other Kevin, my son, will have been off the bike for a week when he’s on Thursday’s ride, and he’ll still smoke me. Hate that!
Today’s ride was about as different from Tuesday’s as you could get. Instead of rain & wind, we had clearing skies and warming temperatures. Instead of feeling like a turtle could ride past me up hill, I felt pretty darned good.
We had both Kevins, Eric, JR, and a recent National Champion, Karen Brems, winner of the 50-54 Women’s CycloCross. Since it was Thursday we were riding up through the park, and even that steep pitch in the middle didn’t kill me like it usually does. I’m thinking maybe this is the day I don’t get dropped! I’m also thinking how much faster I can ride on my Trek Emonda. Pretty amazing bike. Nothing wrong at all with my Boone ‘cross bike, but you can notice the 3 pound weight difference on a climb, and it’s hard to beat the carbon wheels on my Emonda for being smooth & fast. Or maybe it was just getting to see the sun that made everything feel so good.
But before getting to the top of the park I noticed the older Kevin (pilot) quite a way back. Not cool to leave someone behind, at least not to me, so I waited up to see how he was doing. Asked if he’d already gone swimming before the ride (yes), and also apparently had done a killer ride yesterday. What the heck, it’s not going to kill me taking it easier up the hill! The last we saw of them was on the long open section, where some of them were at the very top just as we entered the bottom. Some, not all. Kevin (younger Kevin) had apparently taken off, leaving Eric behind and JR even further back. It should have played out with Kevin having a pretty good time up the hill, but a seizure prevented that, putting him on the ground for about two minutes. And yet he still got to the top a few minutes before older (pilot) Kevin and myself.
The descent into Sky Londa was a bit sketchy; varied between dry and quite a bit of water, especially in the corners. It really did feel safer descending in heavy rain on Tuesday, because the traction was so consistent. The final descent (84 into Woodside) was pretty much the same. It’s really tough trying to stay loose and not hold tightly onto the bars, but that’s what you have to do if you want to stay upright. West Old LaHonda more than made up for the tense descending though; it was beautiful seeing the coast clear of clouds and enjoying a sun that finally seemed to have come back from vacation. Yet another great day on a bike. –Mike–