Gravel Rides

I got in two decent rides over the holiday weekend. Yesterday, I was hoping to take out the hard tail and do some trail riding. That bike has been acting up with some noise coming from the bottom bracket. I figured it was probably some water or moisture. But there was a new clicking sound coming from the back wheel. I had a broken spoke. This is the third or fourth spoke I’ve broken on that bike. Pisses me off.

So I took the gravel bike out instead and hit the trail. I skipped some of the single trail I usually take and extended some of my road riding.

Today, I took the gravel bike out again and did a big loop down into the regional park where the reservoir is. It’s about 1,000 foot climb to the entrance, and mostly fire roads around the lake. There were a couple a hills too steep to ride, so I had to hike them. I got in about 20 hard earned miles on today’s ride. All told, I’ve gotten in about 70-80 miles over the last 7 days.


Olema Ride

For years, I have been wanting to ride my bike along Highway 1 along Tomales Bay. Today I got my wish. I started at Dillon Beach and turned right in the town of Tomales and wound my way down past destination eateries Nick’s Cove, Hog Island, The Marshall, through Point Reyes Station.

I was going to go all the way to Olema, but when I checked my watch, it had 10% life left. I didn’t charge the damn thing overnight. Worried my phone was almost dead too, I turned around. Probably a good thing I did. I was in a headwind the entire time. The last 3 miles from Tomales back to Dillon Beach were grueling. Fortunately the last mile is all downhill on a 10%+ grade.

I’m typing this way late in the day having gotten in a decent nap, and a couple beers. The best tasting beer is that ice cold one you have immediately after finishing a strenuous activity.

44 miles, 4,000 miles climbing, 2,000 calories

Tomorrow, maybe kayaking.

My favorite part of California

Biking with another human

I’m a biker. I have been for about 12 years now. And by biker, I don’t mean one of those Hardly Davidson types. You know what I’m talking about. Those 60-somethings with their $30,000 motorcycles and faux Hell’s Angles ensembles, that look like something you could probably get at Kohl’s.

No, I’m talking two-wheeled, bicycle. I look like a completely different kind of idiot. One of those guys festooned in skin-tight sausage casing styled clothes. Picture NASCAR. Instead of cars, it’s dudes in Spanx and sponsors from yuppie brands and craft beers. I’m kind of one of those guys. The only difference is none of my stuff matches.

For most of the pandemic, I have either been riding alone, or on a single, stationary wheel – aka my Peloton.

While walking the dogs yesterday a new neighbor I had met a couple weeks ago saw me. In our previous conversation, she mentioned her husband rode too, and didn’t have anyone to ride with. When she saw me, she came out of her house, stopped me and got her husband. I was introduced as “that guy she had been talking about.”

He and I exchanged phone numbers, and tentatively had a lunch “date” to ride. Within in an hour, I got a text that he couldn’t do lunch a lunch ride and was 50/50 for post work. Pangs of dread bubbled up in me. At first, I didn’t understand these feelings. Then I realized, these were emotions I hadn’t needed since my 20s when I was still in the dating seen. My wife had to remind me, it was just a bike ride.

Erring on the side of optimism, I squeezed into my best biking stuff and stared at my phone. At 5:25 the text arrived. He would be over in 5 minutes, just like he said he would. We hit the road, and like many first dates, I worried that I might have talked too much or came on too strong. But for that moment in time, I was back in the game baby. But now I’m confused, because I don’t know whether I was more excited to go on a ‘real’ ride again, or on a fake date.