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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Berkeley Hills Ride

Joining Matt Blain and I at the start was David Reiss and Greg Merritt. Matt went to use the restroom, and we got started because I wanted to go use a porta-portee instead. Matt and Sandor met us at the park with the porta-portees and we rode up together to Tunnel road.

Sandor set a blistering pace up Tunnel road and soon we had dropped David and Matt. The weather was clear and beautiful, but the haze (probably from the SD fires) restricted visibility. Nevertheless, it was a big improvement from the fog that greeted us on this ride.

At the intersection with Alhambra Valley Road, we opted for the longer ride, and Greg pulled us for a bit before taking off to do some shopping with his daughter. We then made our way over to Pinole and Richmond, riding by the ugly refineries before coming over along the Carquinez Straits to climb McEwen road.

It had been 2 years since I last climbed McEwen Road, and I'd forgotten how pleasantly shaded it was, and we made our way over to Franklin Canyon road. Franklin Canyon road is rough enough to provide a gratituous butt massage, and then we ended up rejoining the "C" route on Reliez Valley road. By this time I was feeling the effort or the ride, and had slowed considerably. Fortunately, Sandor was happy to slow for me.

At Moraga Center, I knew I was in trouble when after sitting down for 3 minutes I tried to get up again and saw stars instead. Fortunately, a bit of food and water and all the endurolytes I could eat cleared my vision. Nevertheless, the climb up Pinehurst was slow, and the climb along Skyline to Tunnel road took all that I had left. The descent down Tunnel road, however, with the gorgeous bay views and the
easy riding re-energized me, and we made it down to the car at 4:30pm. Matt had been waiting for a couple of hours and told me that the "easy 35 miler" had turned out to be closer to 45. Since Matt's the first person to have ever completed that ride, I'll have to fix the route sheet for next time. David had gotten onto the BART at Lafayette after just 24 miles. Of course, those 24 miles had probably clocked in at 4500' of climbing.


Greg said...

Thanks for the invitation! It's always nice to ride my local roads, but see them through the eyes of out-of-towners. Hopefully on your next visit I'll have the time to join you for the full route.

Piaw Na said...

Good riding with you!