Saturday, July 14, 2018

2018 SMR 27

The Death Ride is today, but there were still plenty of riders doing The Mountain.

Very warm, not hot.  Some new safety cones to protect the riders at Junction... not sure how much good they'll do.

JB discussed rebuilding his Campy shifters and hassles associated with ordering old parts on the internet.  He doesn't yet have his triple.

From up high, we could see that San Francisco was socked in with some kind of dark fog or something.

Toyon Picnic Area closed for repairs.

A beautiful summer morning ride.







Saturday, July 07, 2018

2018 SMR 26

No wind today, pretty warm though.  Lots of riders on The Mountain, but not a lot of serious-looking Death Ride trainers.

Wildlife Encounter:  turkeys, a couple lizards, and one little bunny.

JB has finally bit the bullet and ordered a kit to convert his bike to a triple.  Currently his lowest gear is a 42x26 and it's painful watching him grind up the steeper bits.  His new lowest gear will be a 30x26 (he's not getting a new cassette).  He asked me what my lowest gear was in "gear inches" and I didn't know for sure... but something less than a 27-inch which would be 1-to-1.  I have a 34x27... I tried to round off the division in my head, and then I had a mathematical epiphany... if your rear cog is a 27 with normal wheels, your gear in gear inches is the same as your front ring... so I have a 34" gear! 

Then a woman cyclist passed us on The Bump, and I thought I recognized her from a Strava friend's photos so I caught up and it wasn't who I thought it was but she was a friend of a friend so we had a short chat before I let her drop me.  Then I slowed down to let JB catch back on.

And then my neighbor Mark passed us up and I was feeling good so I hopped on his wheel for almost a mile before I gave up at Chainbuster.

At Junction there were a lot of people and I ran into Strava friend Jim who also noticed that the folks were a little less intense this week and maybe the Death Ride people were taking it easy... someone overheard us, and said that indeed *HE* was doing the DR next week.  We wished him well.

Turned around at Junction because WORK.







Saturday, June 30, 2018

2018 SMR 25

Before I start, I want to tell you about this photo site that I found by a Diablo hiker/photographer and it's just photos and they are amazing in quality and composition, and they're all about Diablo.  Please go check him out - here's a couple examples:

ExploreDiablo.com




OK, now for today's ride.  Well, first (or second?) about last night... there was a pretty big fire on Lime Ridge and a lot of home owners up there had to evacuate and it was pretty scary, so I was ready for any emergency situation that might arise.  Everything was fine though, and people are a little jumpy but everyone's being careful.  NEWSFLASH - another fire closes Ygnacio Valley Road about noon today, hooboy!

As me and JB got started, we discussed the severe winds from last week (that cut our ride short at Juniper) and he said the wind was bad at The Summit today too.  It was really nice on NGR though and we had an enjoyable trip to Junction.

Then I check the Mount Diablo App and sure enough - Summit has 35 mph winds with gusts to 45 mph.  I said (just like last week), "I reserve the right to re-evaluate at Juniper" but he said "How about a Bump de Bump?"  That sounded like a fine idea - I don't even remember the last time I rode up SGR.  EDIT - October 2016!




One of these guys said "Nice Klein" as I passed... then I slowed down to let him have a good look.


A bunch of MTBers were not being very careful entering the roadway from Rock City.

That reminds me, garbage day is on The Fourth of July. 
Nancy!  Probably her last training ride before the Death Ride... nah, probably not.




This guy had an electric-assist hand cycle... way cool.



You know, South Gate Road is so easy, it barely qualifies as a bike ride.  Check out how I can even stay with this semi-pro racer guy:





Sunday, June 24, 2018

2018 SMR 24

Forecast was for very hot, but not until 11am, so I figured quickie Summit and home before it gets oppressive.  But I didn't figure on the wind... holy hell it was bad... strong and dry.  Weeds and grasses were blowing across the road all the way up - it was easy to see how a fire might get started and spread quickly.  Also heard some of the trees groaning and imagined what it would be like to have a 1,000 pound branch fall on me.

At Diablo Ranch, there was a sign announcing a wedding event.  I bet that couple never thought they'd have miserable weather conditions when they made the reservation.

At Junction I joked "I reserve the right to re-evaluate my Summit decision when we get to Juniper... and when we got there JB said he had had enough but I stayed to ... evaluate.  Just when I decided to go up, I got hit with a huge gust of wind and decided to change my mind.

Roadkill Report:  baby rattler below Diablo Ranch.  I ran right over the top of him before I noticed... good thing he was already dead.

For as windy as it was, it was also crowded - lots and lots of riders, lots of them training for the Death Ride.


Here, JB is down in an aero tuck to slice through the punishing headwind.


Saturday Morning Regular Kasters... AKA Sandal Guy


Cal Jersey Autoblog





There were a bunch of these riders with green cat jerseys today... obviously connected some way but no club identification.





Saturday, June 16, 2018

2018 SMR 23

Started off a little windy, then got very pleasant.

Wildlife Encounter:  young deer below Diablo Ranch

I felt good, but low energy for some reason.  JB says he thinks it's because I'm getting old now... I didn't think anyone was noticing.

Not as many Death Ride folks training today - but there were a lot of cars.



I didn't notice right away that my camera mount had slipped,
giving me this great shot of my shifter cables and front tire!



Wednesday, June 13, 2018

2018 WNR 08

Well I did NOT do well in the heat this afternoon.  I was actually looking forward to my first hot WNR, but I just felt drained the whole way up - like it was everything I could do just to keep the pedals going around.  I concluded that I ate too much lunch and didn't drink enough water.

No one showed up at The Church, so I was alone too. 

Roadkill Report: a vulture eating a squirrel or something.  The road was so hot the squirrel was barbecued.

Passed'em-Passed'me ratio:  0-4  not a lot of folks riding in this heat.

32°C at Junction... seemed hotter than that though.





These were the first two to pass me - they were smooth.


These were the second two to pass me - Cal Jersey Autoblog


Turns out the first two and the second two were part of the same group.  The tall guy in the orange jersey was Dutch, and I impressed him with a half-dozen Dutch phrases from my repertoire.  They were talking about work, which sounded like a refinery.

At The Junction JB rode up - I wasn't expecting him.  He said Charlie was coming too, so I waited a bit and then we exchanged stories about heat before going down.


Saturday, June 09, 2018

2018 SMR 22

Today's weather - thick wet fog, but not too cold.

This guy was hiking to The Summit but didn't want to use the trails because SNAKES!  He asked if we were familiar with The Mountain, and if we knew where Camel Rock was - I was surprised I never heard of it and wondered if he were on the right mountain.  Checked at home and didn't find any photos, but apparently it's somewhere on the Burma trail.



Proud Gobbler

Fog doesn't keep the Death Ride trainers off The Mountain -  I had more than 90 Strava Fly-Bys.





OK, cool story time.  For no particular reason, I decided to wear my Sriracha socks today, and then fortuitously we catch up with this guy who's wearing a Sriracha jersey!  We bro-bonded over our mutual love of the rooster.











Wednesday, June 06, 2018

2018 WNR 07

OMFG WINDY!
Me, Kevin, Justin, and Donna today.
I forgot my water bottle and had to turn around.
Everyone attacked me from THE CHURCH... AYFKM?
 I chased them all down one by one, but didn't have a good result because WIND!