Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

04 May 2009

you are a valued friend

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday. What a maroon. Rain day, rain day, rain day.

The "Pink Flamingos" ride took off as scheduled Sunday morning at 9am. All 3 of us rode on over to S____ and J______'s place to cadge a helmet. (Yes, I forgot something. Weird.) While we were there, S_____ and I nosed through the bike room until we came up with some clip on rear fenders, as we'd been jealously eyeing the one adorning the fancy pants road rig of Mr. Cristopher St. John. S____ asked us if we wanted a drink, but it was not to be; Mr. St. John had a schedule to which we must adhere. So we rode to fetch his glasses (back to the cars) , only to find they were in his pocket. You see.

It is a hard road to travel and a rough rough way to go, starting in the rain. At least the wind was quiet. Up and up was the order of the morning. Up HWY9 is not my favorite. Traffic was way down due to the rain. I felt we should have climbed Bear Creek from Ben Lomond, but we had a schedule to which we must adhere and thus we missed my favorite section of 35- all that good twisty, swoopy one laned Goodness just North of Bear Creek, and we had to climb forever anyway so why not do it on a quieter albeit slightly steeper road. It did seem gentler on 9 gradewise and it did calm down after Ben Lomond. And there is no other way to get up that valley...unless we had cross bikes and took the railroad grade! hmmmmm. (Locals, am I making things up?) Climbing out 35 was exposed, enveloped in fog and drizzly; yet grand, silent and worthwhile. We couldn't see all the wonderful panoramic views with the dense fog wrapping us but we could sense them.

It was very difficult to paceline, as even with fenders the road gritty spray was just too much. Though they do help keep your ass dry, the clip-ons don't extend down very far at all, at all. It helped to breathe through your nose. There was a lot of head tilting and odd leaning.

You know how I feel about the wind. This is no small part in my feelings about riding HWY1 along the coast back into town. Frequently heading South along the coast will grant you a tailwind. That's great. When it does not, it is terrible. There is no place to hide from the wind on that lonely stretch fronting the Pacific, with traffic zipping by at 80mph while the drivers watch the sea. With this is mind, I lobbied at the intersection of 9 and 35 to drop back South along the ridge (and get the twisty, swoopy one lane Goodness) to cross 17 and head over to Eureka Canyon and drop it's twisty swoopy one lane Goodness. That would surely be dark and dank, but we were wet already (to the bone, the bone, the bone. Full grown, consider me...stone) full rain suit notwithstanding and it would mean roughly the same mileage.

I should point out that we were soaked through and through, but not cold. Wet is one thing, cold and wet is another. We had all chosen the right clothing for the day. I had Hammer Nutrition's Perpetuem formula in one of my bottles, and I gotta say it works well. Twice it brought me back to myself when I was needing it. No cramps; beginnings, but no developed cramps. And this coming off the couch more or less- my riding has been way down the past month. I should also point out there was Old Grandad in one of the other bottles, so judge for yourself which is the better performance enhancing drink.

We hemmed and hawed and decided to stick with the route as planned. This turned out well. I had never ridden down Alpine before, and it is amazing. Pescadero was a-mazing. Coming in to the hairpins a hair too hot, and wondering if the brakes would grab any more, or if my (racy!) 28mm tires would hold...exciting. Hushed, looming redwoods and twisty smooth pavement. Give Thanks.

Quick stop in Pescadero for some lunch and an oilcan of Foster's, and we were looking at roughly 25miles back along HWY1. No tailwind, but only a very occasional headwind so it was tolerable. The 3 of us rode well together, and that is always nice; when no one gets flustered and jumps when it is their pull- forcing you to jump your own self to catch on instead of smoothly sliding back and into the draft, resting all the while. S_____ is strong. She pulled through steadily whenever I'd get spun and forget I was riding a paceline. I was well glad to be done when we rolled back to the start with 90 miles finished.

image drawn from deneux_jacques' flikr

Wet. Louder than a bomb.


Human Wrecking Ball said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Human Wrecking Ball said...

Great post Rev. I had to delete the previous due to multi typo's. That beauty pic made my heart ache. I am glad the tires held Hoss! We all know that feeling!

juancho said...

The Del Rey is born for that shit. I hear the trees call my name.

Tom said...

I've never found a rain ride to be as bad as it seems from indoors. I love how the forest deepens with a good soak. And I like a post with PE caches. Gratitude for all that.

D____ G___ said...

The route description is apt: bring bus fare.

D____ G___ said...

Alas, the flamingos are no more but here are a couple more links:

Next time we'll check out the machine-gunning skeleton- very spooky, and worth every pain-filled crank up them hills. (did I say really that?)