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  1. #1
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    A Few Days in NorCal

    In Canada, we get two days off at this time of year, Christmas and a rather more civilized version of your "Black Friday" called Boxing Day. So I only need to take three days of vacation time to get the whole week off, and they throw in New Years the next Monday as well!

    Anyway, I thought I'd just let you dudes know that I'll be heading down to California for the week. I'll be bringing my fixie, but I'll have a spare rear wheel with a freewheel on it, for reasons you'll understand below:

    Christmas Sunday and the next Monday I'll be at my parents' place in Redding, CA, so I'll be doing some riding in that area. Early Tuesday I plan to drive to Fairfax and do the Fairfax-Bolinas Rd, with maybe Mt. Tam thrown in. Yeah, on the fixie, but life has its challenges.

    Wednesday, I'm planning on joining the club ride up Mt. Hamilton. I've heard it's not that steep, and I did the Mt. Ham Century back in 1972 or so when I first started riding. If it looks like there's enough time, I'll even consider continuing to Livermore and then finishing off the 100-mile loop back at the Alum Rd/Mt. Ham Rd start. I'm planning on riding up on the fixed gear and then reversing the wheel to the freewheel side for the descent. I may look stupid, but...

    Thursday, I'm planning on doing the Grizzly Peak club's "Duros West" ride in Marin County. Anyone know why this is called "Duros West?"

    I'll be heading back to Redding on Friday, but plan to catch the Davis Bike Club's morning ride.

    If you have any comments or suggestions, please pass them on. And if you're on any of the rides, please say hi. I'll be on the blue Rodriguez fixie/single speed.

    I'm just amazed at the number of rides there are in Northern Cali at this time of year! (www.bikecal.com)

    Luis

  2. #2
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    LoL You'll be skirting right around any area I actually know the lay of the land on bikeing for sorry about that.
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


    ― Ralph Waldo Emerson, Emerson in His Journals

  3. #3
    Me and the cat... Pamestique's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lhbernhardt View Post
    I'm just amazed at the number of rides there are in Northern Cali at this time of year! (www.bikecal.com)

    Luis
    Weather in SoCal right now is sunny, 72 degrees.... so you should not be surprised! Christmas Day its suppose to be 75...
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    Private docent led mountain bike rides through Limestone Canyon. Go to letsgooutside.org and register today! Also available: hikes, equestrian rides and family events as well as trail maintenance and science study.

  4. #4
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    One ride you are missing is the Coastal Classic which starts in Woodside, CA and climbs Old La Honde to the top of Skyline. You descend Skyline via 84 and turn left toward Pescadera at La Honda. You climb Haskins Hill and continue into Pescadero. From Pescadero, you take Stage road and do a series of climbs and descents with view of the Pacific. You continue on Stage until it ends in PCH. You go north on PCH and turn right on Tunitas Creek Road. This is the road the ToC climbs and alone with Old La Honda is one of the prettiest climbs through the redwoods in the bay area. You descend Kings Mountain Road and you are back in Woodside.

    Mount Hamilton is 19 miles of 5.3 % grade that includes 3 descents on the way to the top. The last 7 miles is approximately a 7% grade. The grade is pretty constant due to the requirement to build the observatory at the top.

    I have raced up the north side of Mount Tam and it is a nice climb with some 10 to 12 % sections. After you go through a heavily wooded area, you will climb the 7 sisters which are a group of rolling hills and false flats. It is a great ride.

    My wife and I will be in SoCal riding the coast and training at the LA Velodrome. Enjoy the area!
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  5. #5
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    Thanks Hermes, I'm printing off your instructions into my package of cue sheets I'm taking with me.

    Yeah, the ADT is the best velodrome in North America, and built where you don't even need an indoor track (unless it's for the air-conditioning in the summer). I don't race anymore, but I still like to ride the pacelines at the 200m indoor track here in Burnaby. It really keeps you sharp and improves your technique, especially if you can ride at least once or twice a week, and especially if the weather is miserable! Have fun in LA.

    L.

  6. #6
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    I lived in that area for years and still have relatives there (in fact I'm here for Christmas now). I know most of the routes you mention at least a little, and some of them pretty well. All are good (you ARE aware that they'll involve hundreds of miles of driving to get from one to the other, right? Woodside is three hours or so from Redding). A short but pretty ride you might consider is to cross the Sundial bridge in Redding and ride along the river. It's just a few miles and this is probably the least attractive season, but it's still worth doing.

  7. #7
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pamestique View Post
    Weather in SoCal right now is sunny, 72 degrees.... so you should not be surprised! Christmas Day its suppose to be 75...
    SoCal is not NorCal. It was 26 degrees this morning in Los Gatos (1 hour south of SF). The water in the gutters was frozen. I'd prefer your weather!

    The two short descents on the climb up Hamilton are a bit twisty. Sometimes the weather up there can be quite cold but it was nice today, as we're having an inversion layer that keeps the mountains warmer than the valleys. Weather station link:
    http://mtham.ucolick.org/techdocs/MH_weather/pub/

  8. #8
    Warning:Annoying to jerks RaleighSport's Avatar
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    >.> I think it was 39 degrees around noon here.. that's pretty warm for this week I think.
    “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.”


    ― Ralph Waldo Emerson, Emerson in His Journals

  9. #9
    Idiot Emeritus sarals's Avatar
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    It was 34 in Monterey this morning!

    lhbernhardt, enjoy your rides! There are a few in this area, but none are quite so challenging and scenic as the rides Hermes told you about. The club I belong to does a Saturday morning club ride that leaves from downtown Monterey, goes to Pebble Beach and back again. It travels along Ocean View and then around some of the golf courses in Pebble before doing some short but satisfying climbs and descents, and then doubles back to Monterey. The loop is about 40 miles, and it's always beautiful - even on cold mornings (just watch the wet roads!).

    Merry Christmas!!
    Racer Ex..."Don't know if the shop is under new ownership. If not feel free to shoplift stuff and break bottles in his parking lot."

  10. #10
    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    Looking for some eye candy on this thread, stuff like scenic oceanfronts, undulating roads covered with twenty-niner gold, and an occasional bikini-clad babe frolicking in the surf off in the distance.

  11. #11
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    Yeah, I should have mentioned temperature. I'm in Los Gatos, too, and it's not San Diego. I've seen snow in Redding several times, though it's not common. Nice during the day here today, though--T-shirt weather.
    Depends on what you're used to, of course. When I lived in SoCal, I thought 60 was brisk. Now that I ride in Reno, that's about when I break out the long-sleeved T-shirt.

  12. #12
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    When I drive down from Redding, I'll be staying in Fairfield, since that's more central to the rides I'll be doing. Usually I return to Berkeley or Oakland and tool around the East Bay hills, but this time I thought I'd check out the areas I seldom or never rode.

    When you live in Canada, even in a relatively mild climate (for Canada) such as Vancouver, you get used to temps averaging about 3 deg C (in the 32 to 40 deg F range). Temps in the 40s (5 to 10 degs C) therefore feel quite warm, and 50s are downright balmy. And you usually don't have to worry about black ice. I will be descending with impunity, rather than tiptoing down the hills, fingers on the rear brake lever, as I do when it's hovering around 0 (32) here.

    I plan on taking a few photos during my rides. Looking thru this year's photos, I've got close to 900, just of my bike in various places I've ridden! This trip should add a few more...

    L.

  13. #13
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    If you decide to do the route I suggested, use my directions as a general idea and plot it out on a real map. It is not so obvious in some areas and you will be in the middle of nowhere sometimes and it is always good to know if you are on the right track. There is not a lot of services for food or water. However, as I remember, you spent a lot of time in the east bay before moving to Canada, so I assume you have a pretty good idea of the area. Merry Christmas!
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

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