Not… for me on the bike anyway. Maybe I was doomed because I did part of this in the spring as an ALC training ride. For whatever reason, I forgot my shoes for this ride. Worse? I was maybe 10 miles from the home when I wondered if I had everything. I quickly dismissed it, I have such a routine now. I grab my shoes, helmet, pump, glasses, gloves all in one pass off of the storage in the garage. The second pass, I grab the floor pump and handlebar bag, then load my bike on the back of the car. Like clockwork. If I had only stopped and checked the back of the car…
I provided SAG and photography for the day, though!
Full photo gallery here!
With the forecast for sunny and temperatures in the 60s, climbing Mt. Hamilton in January sounds like a great way to take in the views as the hills are turning green (although let’s hope for more rain soon!) Driving up from Hollister, I hit fog in Gilroy. Larry, Cam and Jerome left a beautiful clear City and ran into the fog at Menlo Park. There were signs that it would clear quickly fortunately.
We headed from the Sunnyvale CalTrain station for the base of the mountain at Alum Rock and Highway 130, where a new member, David Eaton, joined us for the ascent and return. We regrouped at Grant Park, and then continued to long climb to the top and Lick Observatory. We were rewarded with views of the Sierra’s, Mt. Diablo and Mt. Tam, while looking towards the west you could see a fog/haze.
The descent is technical with switchbacks, sand in the road from the recent snows (hard to believe) and gravel or rocks that fall into the road, but the descent after climbing back up from Grant Park has a perfectly paved road and was a blast.
We made our trek back across the “Silli Valley” (as Larry called it in response to my Facebook status that morning “David is going to go ride up a mountain… what was he thinking??”) past the San Jose Airport and up Central Expressway to Sunnvale. While I was ready for the ride to be over for the day (it was after sunset), I did enjoy the day and more so, the great company. Thanks again, Larry!
Mt. Hamilton in the Winter [ALC8 – Larry’s Training Log… (Rider #4604)]
What was I thinking… Mt. Hamilton in the Winter? [WW Uber Cyclist]
Seven cyclists challenged themselves over 90km (55mi) and 1410m (4620ft) of ascent. The weather treated the roadsters well, being as cool as one could hope around the San Pablo and Briones reservoirs. Having warmed-up on Tunnel Rd and through Tilden Regional Park, the crew attacked the Three Bears from behind. Team Doug came in with an average time of 36:30 (along Bear Cr Rd from San Pablo Dam Rd to Alhambra Valley Rd). Team David averaged 42:10. And Team AlfredNancy 46:50.
The recovery ride along San Pablo Dam lead to lunch in Orinda, where half of Team David and half of Team AlfredNancy had to then abandon the ride for prior social engagements. A leisurely ride along Moraga Way served as an actif-digestif, and then the gang hit their final challenge up Pinehurst. Team Doug turned in a average 22:57 (Pinehurst from Canyon Rd to Skyline Blvd), and the now more evenly matched Team David and Team AlfredNancy came in at 28:20 and 28:47 respectively. Congratulations to all those who came and put in a great performance, as evidence by shaking legs, heavy breathing and profuse sweating.