After your first day of cycling, one dream is inevitable. A memory of motion lingers in the muscles of your legs, and round and round they seem to go. You ride through Dreamland on wonderful dream bicycles that change and grow. -- H.G. Wells, The Wheels of Chance
Folks, a number of us have suggested that we provide route slips for our rides. So from here on out we'll try to provide a route slip for every ride at the beginning of every ride. This, among other things, provides a bit more safety, should someone get separated from the group. Additionally, we've decided that we will post these routes on the web, using RouteSlip.com (http://www.routeslip.com/). This will allow us to log on and print these routes slips well before every ride (don't worry, if you don't want to log on and print out a route slip, one will be provided to you by the ride master(s) for that week at the ride's starting point). Besides enabling us to create and keep a log of our routes, this will provide folks a means for joining our rides mid way through a ride, should one decide they don't want to ride the entire ride. We'll keep you informed and teach you how to use the site as this develops fully. In the meantime, expect a route slip, from here on out, at the beginning of every ride. Also, in addition to providing a general description of each ride, as we do each week by email and in the bulletin, we are going to start ranking our rides on a five point difficulty scale (easy, fairly easy, moderate, fairly challenging, challenging), so that we all will have a better idea as to what to expect from every ride. We really want to re-state that the emphasis for our group is on fun and camaraderie. So, please feel free to suggest a route that you like and be a ride master for a day. We're hoping to come up with some new rides to go along with the tried and true and to provide a variety of routes that will appeal to all of us. The more who participate, the better!
Wow folks, we've had a few weeks of some great new rides. Last week (Oct 23rd) we did Jeff Glen-Levin's Tour de Rancho Santa Fe Ride which we're giving a difficulty rating of "moderate" to, due to the fact that there were a few hills on the ride. The ride was a gas, and we saw some lovely country. This route took us down the coast from the Solana Beach train station to Carmel Valley Road, where we headed inland to pick up the Route 56 bike path out to Camino del Sur. The route 56 bike path took us by some absolutely beautiful spots. From Camino del Sur, we headed north, turning on San Dieguito Road and into Fairbanks Ranch, where there was a gradual climb into Rancho Santa Fe. Naturally we stopped for coffee and goodies in the Village, at Caffe Positano. After leaving the village together and riding together for about a mile or so Dave Buergey and yours truly, Paul Shragg, left the group to take a short cut back to my place for the second half of the Charger game. We had to negotiate a couple pretty steep hills on the way back, so we didn't have it quite as easy as we had hoped for. The rest of the group did a 6-mile loop through some orange groves and around the reservoir, then took a dive down some fun-filled descents, winding up on Via de la Valle, which took them back to the coast and ultimately to the train station. The ride was really beautiful and I'm sure it will become a favorite of ours. Thanks to Jeff for scouting the ride. THANKS JEFF!!! Below are a few pictures courtesy of Greata.
On our most recent ride, this last Sunday (Oct 29th), we did Marty Weiss' 5 City Ride. This ride receives a Recycler Difficulty Rating of "Somewhat Challenging++" (i.e. not quite challenging, but close). This ride too had a few hills, with Fanita being the steepest and most challenging. So, while we had a pretty good work out, we also saw some pretty nice country as well, along with El Cajon, Lakeside, Santee, and La Mesa (just kidding). Lake Jennings was probably one of the most beautiful stops along the way, but the most entertaining stop was clearly Annie Oakley's Restaurant in Lakeside, where, to be fair, Walt Zybko said, "I'd come back just for the biscuits and gravy!!!" Walt, the oatmeal was OK also, but do we agree, the service was bizarre, or, at the very least, out of the ordinary? We sat outside and had at least 4 different waitresses. A different waitress almost every visit. The first waitress was much more interested in telling us her plans for getting in shape and joining the Navy then she was in taking our order. No big deal, she finally got the drink order down and ultimately almost got it correct. Mark ordered a malt which she informed him he'd have to wait for because she needed to let the ice cream get soft. Otherwise, she was just about perfect. She finally admitted that bringing out five empty cups and filling them at the table was easier than carrying five full cups of coffee to the table (Look Out Navy). In any case, that was that from her. The first round of coffee and other beverages was on the table. In goes waitress #1, out comes waitress #2. The second waitress, who was fairly efficient, and seemingly intelligent, came out to take our food order. Someone mentioned blueberry muffins, and she said something like, "I'm not sure I'd recommend the blueberry muffins", and so, when we inquired as to what kind of muffins they had, she, of course, said, "blueberry". Needless to say, most ordered blueberry muffins, while I ordered a bowl of oatmeal which was rumored to come with brown sugar, milk and raisins (heck 2 out of 3's not bad, but I really wanted the raisins). After confirming Mark's malt order, in goes waitress #2. Five minutes later, out comes waitress #3. Can you guess? "We're all out of muffins". No, not really, but almost!!! They had two left, so she asked if we would mind if she substituted raisin bread for the non existent blueberry muffins. We, being the easy group we are, happily acquiesced. She thanked us and assured Mark she would fetch his malt. In goes waitress number 3, and here, I'm a bit fuzzy (fuzzier than normal, if you can believe that). I'm not sure who waitress number 4 was (I think maybe all of them came back out), but our food was served, with the exception, of course, of the malt, and one of the waitress did bring my raisins (after I requested them specifically). In the end, of course, the malt never was served.. In any case, I'm of the opinion that we need to do the ride again, if for no other reason then to be able to sit inside the restaurant to see what happens. When I went in to pay my bill, the place was actually pretty full and much of the food looked pretty good. In all seriousness, the waitresses were all very pleasant, as was the hostess (who I hadn't seen until then...Hope she really was the hostess). Sorry about the malt Mark!!!
Oh yeah the ride. The ride was very enjoyable, albeit, like I said earlier, somewhat challenging. Starting at Windmill Farms on Del Cerro Blvd between College and Madra Ave. in San Diego, we took a right on College Ave. to Navajo until it merged with Fletcher in La Mesa. We then took Fletcher left and down into El Cajon, turning left on Marshall and than right on Vernon, which becomes Greenfield Dr., where we traveled out to E. Main/Olde Hwy 80 (a very fun ride). From there we headed east to Lake Jennings Park Rd. We made a left up over the hill and past the beautiful lake, where we stopped for pictures (see below). We then sauntered into Lakeside where we made the infamous stop at Oakley's place. After some great discussion, and our vittles, we traveled west into Santee. There we made a left on Magnolia then a right on Prospect which ultimately led to the most challenging part of the ride, the ride up Fanita. Fanita was a challenging ascent (Marty's terminology for long and steep hill)! After pressing on, we picked up the bike path along Hwy 125 near Grossmont College for about a mile, ending up at College Ave., where we headed back to the starting point (minus Marty and Bernie who left us to ride to their respective houses). The total route was about 36 miles and included down hills, "ascents" and some good straights allowing us to put our pedals to the metal. Thanks go out to Marty for this one, which he thought might have been, "one city too much". Thanks MARTY!!!
THIS WEEKS RIDE, other wise known as "De Ride" (Sunday, Nov 5th, 2006): This week's ride, scheduled for Sunday, Nov 5th, is brought to us by Neil Schneider and Dennis Webb. This ride is known as the Old Julian Highway Ride, and is rated as moderate+, rumored to be not quite as challenging as last week's ride. We will meet just in front of Dos Picos County Park at 8:00 am for an 8:15 roll out. This should be a great ride. The entire route is posted on RouteSlip.com, and can be printed out. Simply click on the link and click on "Route Slip Preview" on the left hand side. The address of the park, should you want to Google directions, is 17953 Dos Picos County Park Road, Ramona CA 92065. Feel free to write or call me (760.420.6471) if need be.
Sun. 11/12: The ride scheduled for the week of Nov 12th is the Solana Beach to Oceanside Ride, which receives a Recycler rating of easy + (no hills at all). Meet at 8:00am (the north end of the Solana Beach Train Station parking lot) for an 8:15am roll out.
Sun 11/19 This ride will be known as the Darfur ride, as we plan to meet in Balboa Park at a rally to increase our awareness of the genocide taking place in Darfur. The ride itself will be our South Bay Route (which we normally start at the SD County Administration Bldg.), ending up in Coronado for the fun Ferry ride back to SD. Despite the heavy nature of the rally, this ride is listed as an official Recycler "FUN RIDE". No emphasis on speed this day. It's all about having some fun together. In fact, we're suggesting that you bring a friend or two along and we especially will welcome tandem couples (although they're always welcome, of course). We're going to meet in Balboa Park between 7:45 and 8:00 am in order to participate (observe) the beginning of the rally. You can get more information about the genocide and the rally at www.sandiegowalkfordarfur.org . The starting point of our ride will be in the grassy area on the west side of the Laurel St. Bridge in Balboa Park. It's near Laurel St and 6th Ave. We may need to park a few blocks away and ride over the start. Just for your information, there is a suggested donation of $23.00 which will get you a t-shirt and the satisfaction of knowing that the money will go to help to stop the genocide and provide aid to the people of Darfur. The donation is, of course, totally voluntary, and the ride is totally independent of the rally, so please participate in the ride under any circumstances. Expect more information next week.
Final Tid Bit: (Same as the last two weeks, but with more emphasis): Marty is about to finalize our order for Recycler Jerseys. This doesn't happen often, so if you or a family member/friend should want one, now is the time to order by contacting Marty at email@example.com this week. He's hoping to place the order on Friday. It's important that you let him know the size and quantity you want. Price is $32.50 and you can pay him when you pick up your jerseys which will be in about 4 - 6 weeks. My experience is that they run small/tight, as most bicycle apparel does (maybe even a bit more so). Just my observation, and I assume no responsibility (in case you know a good lawyer). Please don't procrastinate on this, he really needs to make the order this week and he needs a good idea of the sizes people want.