the original plan was for Kevin and I to drive to Sacramento early this morning, park close to the American River Bike Trail, and then do a ride out towards Folsom and back, returning in time to see the finish of the men’s race.
We got off to a bit of a late start, and then hit some heavy traffic en-route, threatening to really cut into our ride time. As we approached Davis, I had an interesting thought. Why not ride from Davis into Sacramento, watch both the men’s and women’s race, and ride back? Kevin quickly checked the feasibility on GoogleMaps, which said quick, take the next exit, park & ride. So that’s what we did. And what an awesome place to leave from, with both a drive-through coffee place and Redrum Burger (formerly known as “Murder Burger” which apparently didn’t sit well with the city leaders of Davis).
We programmed the destination into our Garmin computers and they faithfully took us straight to the bike race! “Straight” is more than a subjective expression in this case; it’s a perfectly-straight run after the first slight curve on Olive Drive, over the Yolo Causeway and into West Sacramento. For some reason I’d always wanted to ride the Yolo Causeway, so it’s one more thing crossed off the list. Unfortunately, we had a mild headwind heading out, and a nasty headwind coming back! What’s with that? Riding next to the freeway, it’s also on the noisy side, plus, the surface isn’t much different from what you find on the Dumbarton Bridge bike path. Lots of debris! But we got through, twice, without incident.
Once in Sacramento we found a great place for coffee (actually, the first of two), Temple Coffee. But Food? I thought there had been a “food court” of sorts within the race course years past, but might have been mistaken? Sure couldn’t find any! Eventually we headed a block or two off the course and found a street stand selling bacon-wrapped hot dogs. Mmm. Bacon. This day was going very well so far!
We then set up for the women’s race, finding we really didn’t have an interesting place for pictures, about 150 meters from the finish. For the men’s, we found an area where they’d be coming hard through a corner, with reasonably-decent lighting. The result is at the top of the page.
Afterwards we retraced our steps back to Davis, facing, as mentioned, that nasty headwind. Somehow it didn’t seem that much of a bother though, which seems strange. Seriously, what could be worse than a perfectly-straight piece of road, with marginal pavement and a stiff headwind?
In the end it wasn’t a very long ride, just 30 miles, but did get me just over my 120 mile Strava goal. Plus another really good coffee place on the course (which I don’t recall the name of) and finally, upon our return to the car, dinner at Murder Burger! Er, I mean, Redrum Burger. What’s not to like?
Well, what’s not to like was the drive home, which took more than an hour longer than the drive getting there, due to really heavy traffic. Getting places by bike or train is so much nicer than by car.