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

Bikes behaving badly, cars behaving badly

Tuesday morning, Kevin and I headed over Jefferson, stopping at Canada and checked left & right to make sure it was safe, before heading across. But it’s not just cars we have to watch out for. Check out the graphic above, a Strava screenshot showing one of a group of cyclists heading south on Canada Road, right as we got there. Strava conveniently laid out a data point exactly in the middle of the intersection.  You’d expect to see a cyclist, at that point, doing maybe 5 or 10mph. Not 25.9mph.

That group of cyclists blew through the stop sign without bothering to slow down at all. It’s a group that commutes from SF to Mountain View on a regular basis; we’ve seen them frequently. This is, quite literally, how they roll. 26 miles per hour through a stop sign.

Sure, you can shave off a lot of time blowing through stop signs on  your way to work, but what if everyone felt entitled to do so? Our paths cross with this group more often than not as we’re heading to the start of the Tuesday/Thursday-morning ride; obviously they keep to a schedule just like us, and they’ve managed to keep to that schedule, within a minute or two, even after riding 20+ miles with a number of stop lights & signs along the way. Doesn’t take much to figure out how. Next time you’re minding your own business, riding where you ought to be, sharing the road with motorists and yet somebody comes up behind you blaring their horn and maybe shouting you should be on a bike path, you might now have an idea who the motorists had come across previously.
And then there was this morning’s ride. We missed crossing paths with the SF-Mountain View commuters by maybe 10-20 seconds, for what it’s worth. But today it was a motorist’s opportunity to play stupid, up on Skyline. Foggy & damp conditions, and you can see what’s playing out in the photo above. There were three of us; myself, Kevin & Karen, all of us with bright flashing lights up front, and here’s this guy in the other direction passing not one but two cars, and probably would have passed a third had he not seen us and cut back very sharply in front of the car above.

If we hadn’t had lights… who knows. It’s hard to believe how many cyclists we see, on days like this, without flashing lights front or rear. Sometimes even dressed head to toe in black. Please, let them know you exist! High quality flashing lights can be seen great distances and make a motorist aware there are others out there on the road.

Felt pretty OK once I got past Kings. Maybe better than OK!

No records set; no way that’s ever going to happen again on the regular Tuesday/Thursday-morning ride. Over 10 years of Strava data to beat, and the 62 year old me just can’t touch the 52 year old version. I’m generally OK with that, but would still like to do battle once in a while.

Today it was just me, Kevin & George. The other Kevin (pilot) is off in Switzerland. Kevin left us somewhere around the park and finished a few minutes up on us; at 31-something, I can tell it’s not going to be easy getting back under 30. Once up on Skyline I just hung onto wheels for a while, finally starting to feel pretty decent just in time for the descent into Sky Londa. We bombed it pretty good, but still a good 10 or 12 seconds off my best time (Strava says I’ve got the 8th best time on that descent and sure, I’d like to try to improve on that, but it might take a slight tailwind to do it).

West Old LaHonda was where things felt pretty good. The first half I was wondering how I was going to stay on wheels, but the second half it was simply a given. No way was I going to get dropped. Not today. And I didn’t. Maybe Kevin was holding back a bit, don’t know, almost don’t care, but I was there all the way to the end.

The rest of the day I felt it in my legs, in a very, very good way.