Category Archives: Tues/Thurs 7:45am ride

Endless ramblings regarding the every Tuesday & Thursday-morning bike ride, leaving Olive Hill & Canada Road at 7:45am, rain or shine

Road closed? Like that’s going to stop us?

road_closed_wolhMost of the “Big Storm” had passed by the time we got out on our bikes this morning, but the roads were still soaked and sloppy, so it was another ride on the ‘cross bikes. We arrived at the start about 45 seconds late (Kevin had some trouble finding his glasses) and found nobody waiting. Could be that they took off on time, could be that we were it. We took off quickly, trying to catch up with anyone who might be ahead of us, but it was pretty clear we were chasing phantoms as we didn’t see a single bicycle tire track in the wet pavement anywhere on the ride.

It wasn’t fast nor was it nearly as slow as our times indicated, which of course is a bit tough to reconcile. We took a couple minutes exiting through Huddart Park to shed some clothes, and we weren’t riding really fast on the wet pavement; maybe that’s where the extra 15 minutes came from?

Then again, I’m forgetting about the extra time on West Old LaHonda. As seen in the picture, the road was “closed.” You could argue we should have more respect for such signs, but then again, these signs didn’t appear until at least half a mile up West Old LaHonda. There was really no debate; we were going ahead. What’s the worst that can happen? We’re on ‘cross bikes, we’ve got shoes we can hike in. Turned out it was a broken utility poll with a cable, could be power, could be something else, suspended about 3 feet over the road. Easy enough to squeeze under with no danger of electrocution, even if it was a power cable. So sure, the road was closed… to cars.

Despite it being not so bad out there, we saw just two other cyclists as we returned through Woodside. Guess most of them were on sunny Zwift Island this morning, spinning away on trainers in their garages. I’ll take a real ride over virtual just about any day. –Mike–

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Almost, but not quite Epic. Cold enough to be miserable, but steady rain, no downpour.

Another beautiful morning on Skyline!
Another beautiful morning on Skyline!
We are a strange lot. OK, maybe not we, could just be me. I go to bed, night before a stormy morning ride, looking forward to it. There’s something about being out there, when it’s really dumping, and nobody else is on the road (except maybe your son who you dragged out, and an aging airline pilot who is often smart enough to stay in bed, but not always), and the rain is coming down HARD, everything’s soaked through so you’ve already reached equilibrium (there’s no way to get either more wet or dry off)… it’s just a matter of keeping the fire going strong enough to stay warm.

An ideal epic ride would be heavy rain, temps anywhere in the 50s, and maybe a bit of wind to howl through the Redwoods. What kept this morning from being idea was a lack of really heavy rain (seriously, that’s not optional) and it was just too darned cold. Sure, 40 degrees is a whole lot warmer than the 28 degrees we’ve been seeing on some recent rides, but 40 degrees and wet? After the water’s found a way to sneak through your clothes, just before hitting the descent? That’s not part of the requirement. I’m still trying to figure out exactly how to dress for that, to tell you the truth. On the other hand, I might not be too far off from nailing the cold & wet dress code, since I never did feel like shivering, never got that oscillation going when descending because your arms and legs are shaking so bad.

So now I’m thinking, maybe I have too many restrictions on what qualifies as an ideal epic ride? Maybe it’s not truly epic if I say it doesn’t need to include the really bad stuff. Maybe there are degrees of epic, and I should be going for the ultimate!

Or maybe I’m becoming mildly sensible in my getting-older age.

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