Monday, February 14, 2011

Early Season Great Club Rides-2011

The bonus mile group expanding the regular Diablo Cyclist routes--but also dropping like flies. Dr. Dave, Ward and Christine all on the 15 day injured reserved list. My ankle has been killing me since before Thanksgiving--mostly aggravated while walking, just tender when cycling until "FUCK"-I have to clip out. Reversed all my cleats for an easier release angle. Now mid February and was the first time it didn't hurt on any weekend ride. This is good news as I just signed up for Alta Apina 8 and Mt. Tam-my two feature events of the year, and Devil Mountain Double as a training ride for Alta Alpina. Some fn training ride.

A side of Mt Diablo the Diablo Cyclists rarely see--from the agricultural fields to the Northeast. To save time on some Sundays instead of riding with the Club I take the fixed gear and loop to Los Vaquaros--1/2 the ride is subdivision ugly and 1/2 is in the agriculture belt. Unlike central country where there are cyclists everywhere, this area is really desolate. This is the transition spot from ag land to subdivisions.

Ward and I psyched re our new rides. I have my hybrid all ready to go for the grueling 3 miles to Peets Coffee--now with a chainring guard so I wouldn't catch my pants leg and Shimano V brakes so I wouldn't roll into the drive thru window (oh, that's Buck Bucks.)

Meanwhile Ward got a new Parlee and Pegoretti, and the best he can say to describe the differences in the bikes are "one is white and one is black."

One favorite club ride is Morgan Territory, a nice off the beaten path climb. First order of business is to get away on the rollers from the tandem so we wouldn't hear Captain Know It All or have snot balls blown back into the paceline. Then we just kept our bonus group together for the climb that features hairpins that kick up nicely. Above Brian, Ward and Christine working on their suntan at the top of Morgan. After the wind strewn curvy downhill a few of us split off to ride out and do the Palamoras climb. All told about 90 miles.

The guys were real nice--when I was in Flordia they decided to do Sierra Road--a climb I hate. Its a steady and steep gruel up. Above-Dr. Dave does it on the 'bent. (Ward-o-photo)

Another great club ride is the Peet's Coffee ride where no one goes into Peet's but the bakery next door over the hills in Berkeley. To get there we go over 4 easy to medium hills (The Pig and the Three Bears) where there usually is a club sprint out to the two rest stops. Here Brian is enjoying the February weather at the first regroup after the Pig Climb. Today will have lots of climbing but little wind--last week was flatter but with a stout wind all day everyone was dead by the end of the day.

Collin, one of our new bonus mile guys, rode over the Bears with me and he was making fun of riders now decked out in full Cervelo kits. We met up with Stephen after a furious Bears ride (he smartly came in from the other way)--and sure enought there was someone with a full Cervelo kit right behind him. From here we climb up to Tilden Park.

Numerous ways to get out of Tilden Park and ride the ridgeline above Berkeley-Oakland. Before being exiled to Hawaii Mike had found a 20% climb out of the park. In his honor some of us did the Muir de Mike, named after the man himself (above.)

Maybe this is called the Peets Ride as some folks sit on the bench in front of Peets, as Mike and Christine demonstrate.

After a climb back to Skyline Collin spotted one guy weaving and a woman walking her bike up a dead end street, and he made a command decision that we had to do it--aptly named "Diablo Way-" aka "the Muri de Collin"

Collin and Matt on the top of Diablo Way.

Stephen, Jack, June and I did some bonus miles into Castro Valley and then Jack and I finished going up to the ranger station of Mt. Diablo. As noted earlier this ride had much more climbing than last week** but last week's steady crosswind/ headwind made that ride much more brutal. last week hit Mt. Diablo at mile 80, this week at mile 70. Last week put in a huge effort, was strung out at the end, and had gotten in a few minutes before my compatriots--this week rode an ez pace bsing pace with Jack. Shocked when watch said this week's ez pace was 20 seconds faster. Shows what we do at the beginning of a ride really impacts later on.
**Peets Ride has 4500' climbing in 50 miles--and apart from our adding the two short but 20% Muirs, the bonus group also did Redwood, Crow Canyon and Norris Canyon before hitting Mt. Diablo for our 85 mile ride.
First great quote of the year, when we all join in with a gigantic teenage racing team coming back on the flats the next day. A yellow light in the distance--will be solid red when we hit it--the teenagers go through the light as we all stop except for Jeannie who was mid pack, and disappears with teenage pelaton down the road. Mike chirps in "that just became "The Cougar Ride" I almost fell off the bike.


Anonymous said...

That guy on the bent went up the back side of Sierra. WI just took that picture of him coming up the front side to impress you with what amazing early-season form the rest of us have. "Charlie," of course, always comes up the front side. Usually on a fixed gear.

Jay said...

You obviously staged the photo of the 'bent cresting the front side of Sierra Road to intimidate boxboy.