Sunday, June 26, 2016

Beach Babe

Beach Babe (that would be me) walking along the cliffs and beaches of Half Moon Bay, to escape the heat wave blanketing the Bay Area.

61 degrees felt wonderful.  The cliffs were dotted with flowers and shrubs, too.  Lovely. 

I watched the morning fog roll; blue skies and sun brought chillier temps.  Fine with me. 

I shuffled between walking along the cliffs and walking on the beach. 

Every turn, every view, brought a new wonder, something beautiful to behold. 

Next walk will be to go to the Ritz Carlton (you know it from the American Pie 3: The Wedding film). Meanwhile, later, I went to Safeway and hung out at the freezer.  I look forward to when the heat wave leaves.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

All in One Ride

Miss P. suggested that we do the club's ride in Aptos given the heat wave we've been experiencing this past week.  Best decision ever.  We started at Cabrillo College at 8:30am with a nice cool marine layer. 

The ride was a fully supported 100K for our recent Academy graduates --"Twelve weeks of cycling instruction for adults who want to become competent cyclists."  So proud of them.  Much of the route was the Strawberry Fields Forever event in reverse.  Boy, did we see a lot of strawberry fields and so much more in just one ride. 
Ooh, I want one for Christmas.   They were about my height and only $149 each.  This was in Corralitos.  I was able to take my jacket off by this time but still kept my wool tights and arm warmers on. 

Also spotted in Corralitos.  Hmm, I am reminded of the UPS delivery man in downtown San Jose that I spotted twice this week.  I am in lust with the UPS man.  He's at least 6'5 and looks like a young Gregory Peck.  I must buy something, oh I know, the knights above, with the hope that the UPS man will deliver.

Our first rest stop on Browns Valley Road before taking off for Hazel Dell and Mt. Madonna Road over to Gizdich's for pie!

Just about to arrive at Gizdich's.  Miss P. was already there.  She was much faster than me the entire ride.

Oops, this may have been before pie was served.  It was a beautiful in the redwoods. 

Chugging away.  Passing through Elkhorn Slough. 

Omg, more strawberry fields.  On and on.  And then the headwinds kicked in on the way to the coast.  It was chilly and a struggle.  Already my memory has forgotten this portion.

But, we made it (well, Miss P was way ahead of me) to Manresa State Beach. 

Entering Seacliff.  Bit of a maze, turning here, turning there, avoiding hitting anyone, lots of smoke from barbecues, but warm and sunny again.  A Richard Gere lookalike caught my attention.  I think I caught his attention, too.

More of Seacliff.   Boy, this was a big ride for me but much appreciated that our club offered it.  We had it all -- redwoods, farms, beaches and nice nibbles at rest stops.  And we beat the heat being away from the Bay Area.  Miss P. wisely suggested that we return home via Soquel San Jose, Summit, Old Santa Cruz Highway to Hwy 17, thus avoiding CA 1 and most of Hwy 17.  Smart woman.  Great ride. 

Just the stats:

62.88 miles
11 avg mph
34.6 mph on a descent
5 hr. 32 min.

Monday, May 30, 2016

The Remainder of the Trip

I share with you photos and random thoughts for the rest of our biking holiday in the Santa Ynez Valley.  We did the same routes we've done in previous years but in reverse, and that was a treat.  Things appeared differently of course and it was loads of fun descending with a tailwind after struggling with headwinds in this gorgeous valley of vineyards.

Each day we increased our mileage eventually doing close to 60 miles the last day.  It was a good plan for me to get back into biking after a winter of rain and uneven exercise. 

Tuesday was a weird day, after a lovely quiet ride on a back road and then realizing that biking along Highway 1 might prove dangerous, so, we changed course and ended up on a road undergoing construction.  Our peaceful morning turned jarring but these things happen, right.  The photo above has nothing to do with this particular rambling.  I just liked the shot I took.

Wandering into little towns, wondering what surprises await makes biking holidays wonderful.  A cafe we visited each time in Los Alamos was no longer but we discovered another place to eat and had a good lunch.

The wind is always a factor here.  But this year, it was also a wee bit chillier and our mornings began with cloud cover that eventually broke into warmer sunnier afternoons.  Wednesday morning it rained for an hour but we were able to ride once it stopped.  A valley of vineyards, with patterns to delight the eye.

A valley filled with canyons to delight the eye.  Cat Canyon, Drum Canyon, Ballard Canyon, all beautiful.  It truly was a delight to coast down some of them rather than climb as we have in previous years. 

A valley with farms to catch the eye's attention.  I never tire of these patterns.  I'd like to return at another time of the year to see this area in a different light.

Thursday was our last day in Solvang.  After the ride, we ate a quick meal at Starbucks and proceeded to our next destination -- Cambria.  We drove along the coast, passing Morro Bay.  Alas, we had car trouble.  The Boyfriend was brave and quick thinking, trying to get us to Cambria; we fell short about a mile from the outskirts of town.  Thank you AAA.  A tow truck took us to our hotel, by this time, 9pm.  The towing guy picked us up again Friday morning and took us all the way back to the Bay Area.  He was an interesting character and I quite enjoyed his company.  He lives with his family in Big Sur.  I'm jealous. Anyway, not exactly how we planned to end our holiday but all that really matters is that we had a romantic fun filled trip and we got home safely.