It’s hard coming up with something new & fun after living and riding here since… well, pretty much since the dinosaur (I started doing longer bike rides around 1967). But today I think I put together a pretty nice one. As with all my rides, they start at the center of the Universe, that being Canada Road & Olive Hill, just north of Woodside. Why? Because it’s a couple miles from where I live and is the start/finish of the Tuesday/Thursday-morning ride.
You can view the ride on BikeRouteToaster here, and also download it from that site directly to your Garmin computer!
In a nutshell, this ride starts in Woodside, goes over Old LaHonda to the coast, then south on Highway 1 to Gazos Creek, north on Gazos Creek to Pescadero, Stage Road to San Gregorio and then Highway 1, and then Tunitas/Kings to get back to Woodside.
We started late (as usual), Kevin had one of his all-too-common seizures on Old LaHonda (again, as usual, although we were hoping that keeping his heart rate below 170 would keep that from happening), had a light headwind going out to the coast (as usual), and a pretty nice run south to Gazos Creek, where we ate at the Gazos Creek Grill (highly recommended!) before returning.
Not too many cyclists out on the coast side today, but those we did see were often on bikes we sold, and that always makes me feel good! But what really made me feel good was getting up Tunitas even faster than last week, despite, or perhaps because of, a bee or yellow jacket that stung me on the neck at the base of the climb. Kevin and I stopped for less than a minute to make sure there was no stinger to be removed, after which I flew up the hill with legs that felt stronger than they have in years. Maybe it was actually a radioactive spider that bit me, like Peter Parker (Spiderman)? More likely it was a desire to get back before any nasty swelling might set in. But whatever it was, Kevin hung on pretty well, and the 48:44 time was his best so far. More soon.
This page might be a bit messy right now as I’m trying some new things. Within a day or two it should be cleaned up. –Mike–
It’s really tough to top the big ride we did in France- the Glandon/Croix de Fer/Telegraphe/Galibier loop. Probably impossible. Not even sure I’d want to! But it would seem terribly insignificant to just do a loop out to the coast, so today Kevin (my son, not the pilot) and I did the Woodside/Old LaHonda/Pescadero/Santa Cruz/Highway 9/Skyline loop, something we’ve done a number of times, and added in the Swanton Road detour for a scenic diversion from a few miles of Highway 1 (which is so busy at this time of year that the noise from cars does a lot to break you away from the pleasant experience cycling should be).
113 miles, about 9200ft of climbing, moderate pace (15.1mph average) broken up by a flat tire Kevin got on Highway 9 on the return. Along the way Kevin got his best-time yet up Old LaHonda (21:38), which he thinks his new Madone is largely responsible for, as well as shaving a minute off his usual time up Haskins.
Unfortunately, the usual tailwind on the coast wasn’t there, so that part of the ride was a bit of a grind. I was also try out a route that would bypass maybe a mile of the most-congested part of Highway One through Santa Cruz via King Street; it literally was so jammed that it was unsafe to try and make the left-hand turn required to get there. Since this was one of those things that looked good on a map but I didn’t really know how it was going to turn out, we didn’t go to any heroic efforts to try.
Ride details: 108 miles as shown on the map (starting from the Park & Ride on Woodside Road just west of 280).
Climbs- Old LaHonda 3.34 miles 1287ft, Haskins (Pescadero Road) 1.65 miles 601ft, Highway 9 east of Boulder Creek (when the “real” climb finally starts) 7.6 miles 1800ft. In addition there’s a couple thousand feet of small & rolling climbs.
It was interesting to feel, at the 100 mile mark, like I could just keep on going, maybe tackle one more big climb without feeling like I’d pushed the limit. Sad to think that, in a couple months, such capabilities will be just a memory. –Mike–