Saturday, November 26, 2011

2011 SMR 35

Picked a bad day to forget my sunglasses - it was really bright and clear on The Mountain this morning.

Just me so I rode leisurely; a couple guys passed me but I kept them in sight.

Lots of people at Junction though... burning off Thanksgiving meals.

First time I've ever seen a sign like this... poor guy's bike went missing - hope it didn't get run over by a car or eaten by a coyote.

Not much to write about, so I'll just leave this here.  In case you've ever wondered what it would be like to be a bicycle commuter in Venice Italy:

Saturday, November 19, 2011

2011 SMR 34

Rained over night, sloppy but pleasant this morning.

Going out Walnut Avenue this time of year, the morning sun is right in your eye.  I was watching the DishNetwork satellite image of the earth before I left and I could see the blanket of darkness being peeled away from the west coast and experience it in real life at the same time.

Met with JB at the Gate.  I don't think we saw anybody else for the first few miles and then there was one guy coming down and that was about it.

Wildlife Encounter:  big deer at the Bump, but he hid behind a tree when he saw us.

Didn't realize there was a missile launch from Danville this morning.

JB hadn't heard about the lady who drove her Landrover off South Gate Road last week; she rolled down a steep section, was thrown from her vehicle and died.  The news didn't know if it was alcohol or recklessness or a heart attack or falling asleep or whatever, but yesterday they reported it was being handled as a suicide.  Anyway, we decided to go see if we could find the place and see if there was any damage.  We found plenty of places where driving off the road could result in a fatal consequence, but didn't see any obvious tracks or damage to the landscape.

Then we saw a couple walking up the road with a big beautiful dog and I asked them if they knew where the car had driven off, and they didn't but it turns out the woman had been a friend of theirs.  They described in general terms the kind of life issues she had been dealing with for so long that ending it all would certainly have seemed like a reasonable option.  But while I completely sympathize, it angers me that she chose Diablo to do it on.  Not only does it make for a sad story, she could have caused a fire, she could have been injured but not killed and risked the lives of rescuers.  Mount Diablo is too special to be stained with this kind of stigma.  Her obituary.

OK then we went down through the Hole and around.

Wildlife Encounter:  a gaggle of turkeys down there somewhere.

Movember moustache is magnificently macho.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

2011 SMR 33 and Special Request

Sloppy today - it's been raining the last couple days but it looked like it was done.
Not really very cold either, but still needed full jacket and tights.

Some guy passed JB and me near Moss Landing and we figgered him to be a flare.
He pulled over at the top of the Bump to recover... looked like your typical tachycardia and anoxia.  I pulled out my cell phone and "checked my messages" when I went past him.... LULZ.

JB went home from Junction and I went up to Juniper.  Not many folks on the road this morning.

Product Review:  Clif Bar Peppermint Stick flavor
This thing gets a 10 on the Diablo Scott Energy Bar Rating Scale... that is all.


I've given up trying to protect my Columbus SL decal... farewell little dove.

Juniper was totally fogged up... visibility was like an arm's length.

OK, here's my attempt at capturing the same scenery as this 1984 photo of Eric Heiden at Chainbuster in a race:

Probably not the best weather for a re-creation.

OK, and now for the Special Request:
I am participating in MOvember - grow a moustache for a month and collect money for men's cancer:

The Movember Effect: Awareness & Education, Survivorship, Research
The funds raised in the US support prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men. The funds raised are directed to programs run directly by Movember and our men’s health partners, the Prostate Cancer Foundation and LIVESTRONG, the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Together, the three channels work together to ensure that Movember funds are supporting a broad range of innovative, world-class programs in line with our strategic goals in the areas of awareness and education, survivorship and research. 

Movember 1:  Clean-shaven.

Movember 7:  I decide to have a little fun with this.

Movember 12:  The envy of Mo-Bros everywhere.

Adam arranged for a "corporate team" of moustache growers at work;  when we started, there were two guys in the office who were fighting cancer... now there's only one.  RIP Gregg.

OK, go HERE and donate $5 or something.  Remember it's a corporate team so keep the comments professional!  And thanks.  

Sunday, November 06, 2011

2011 SMR 32

I always think I can make it from my house to the Gate in 20 minutes; but heaps of data don't support that conclusion... I was five minutes late and JB had just started up but I caught him.

Wildlife Encounter:  About 50 turkeys near Little Pine Creek.  I made my signature gobble noise and got them to all gobble back... that always cracks me up.

Kind of a quiet day on the Mountain, but we did see a few guys descending - they must have started up well before dawn.

There were several places where someone had taped off areas like this:

Is that some species of protected cat tail?

I didn't have an encounter, but there were a bunch of coyotes howling and yapping up near the Upper Ranch.

JB went down SGR and I went home, but back at Little Pine Creek there was a big nature hike going on and some of the turkeys had wandered up to the road:

I stopped to watch them for a while and marveled at how much like dinosaurs they were.  They didn't seem to mind my being there either.

There was another guy stopped on the other side of the turkeys, coming up.  I said something as I went by and he asked "Hey, are you Scott?", so I turned around and talked to him for a while.  His name is Mike and he started riding Diablo in the '70s, and had some good stories. Even sent me this photo of Eric Heiden riding a race(!) on Diablo - anyone recognize that fence gate? Is it still there? I love the shot - Heiden on a Rossin and that Ten Speed Drive guy on a Guerciotti.

Eric Heiden just after Olympics

Clicking on the photo should take you to his flickr site for the original.

Front flat when I got home - looks like a bit of Michelin wire found its way into my Vittoria Evo - easy patch.