So I had the original intention of completing my first century of the year (highly inspired by SilentBen), and planned to meet up with him, and Donald (dl33) in Fremont ... but I was running so behind, that I realized I wouldn't be able to make it at the pre-determined meeting time, so instead, I just met everyone at Dublin/Pleasanton Bart station.
Jim brought his friend Scott
SilentBen actually rode from Menlo Park, across the Dumbarton Bridge over to the start (meeting Donald, dl33, by Niles Canyon). I remember as I was driving over, it was really fogged in when I left Sunnyvale. The fog stayed around until getting over to 680. I also heard on the radio that there was a fog advisory on Dumbarton ... geez, Ben, and you had to pick today to ride across Dumbarton. According to Donald, the ride across Niles Canyon was really cold .. I think he said it was in the mid-30's. When he arrived, I let him sit in my car, just to let him thaw out. I say again, I'm really glad I was running late.
At the start, in Pleasanton, there was not even a hint of fog. As we rolled, it was sunny, and nice ... was still a little chill, so it was either light jacket, or arm/leg warmer weather.
We met Glenn in Pleasanton, as we passed through downtown. Pretty soon, I went from being the lead, to trailing the pack ... a position that Curtis and I competed for ...
After a Starbucks stop 12 miles in, we were on our way to Patterson Pass. Glenn showed us an alternative route, via a newly opened Bike Path ... it cut out a lot of the traffic light route, and that was nice. Thanks Glenn for the nice alternative route.
As soon as we got back on the route, the pack dropped me, and Curtis, like a "badly microwaved potato". Thanks Jim for trying to reel me in, but there was only so much that I can do when the legs just don't have it.
Luckily, for me and Curtis, the group was there waiting for us before the climb up Patterson.
Ok, now for the first climb. This is what we had to look forward to:
Of course, I was trailing in the back, but eventually caught up with Curtis, and we continued to ride up to the top. This is where we were treated with an amazing view of the windmill farm.
Ok, we're at the top ... and it's time to descent down the hill ... and Pete, gives us the sign it's time to go when he says "you guys all suck", as he proceeds to fly down the hill.
We did wind up back on Flynn Rd, and I knew I wanted to do this part of the ride, but I had completely forgotten how gorgeous it is over there. IMHO, that was the prettiest, and the best part of the ride.
Of course, it had a nice screaming downhill to go along with that.
We stopped for Starbucks (about 50 yards from Mark's (rumbutter) house). After re-fueling there, we proceeded on a really "spirited" 20 miles back to the start. I really think I worked harder on this part of the ride than the climb. I was able to hang in with the pack until we made the right turn on Highland ... same thing that happened last time I did that ride. Some things just don't change.
All in all, it was a great ride, great weather, and great company. Thanks Glenn for leading us through the bike path. Thanks Jim for trying to reel me in with the rest of the pack. And thanks Mark, for leading us back from Livermore to Pleasanton. I hope everyone enjoyed this ride, as much as I did. It was just the perfect day for this ride.