Monday, June 29, 2009

sf2g part-bayway then Ringwood

Monday June 29th, AM. Riders: Googlers Ben and Dave. An sf2g NRLB ride, so we kept the pace light and the tour scenic, hitting up the Broadway bridge over 101, the path along Sanchez Creek Lagoon, and the feral cat highway under the 92. Discovered a dirt trail from Whipple to near the bridge to nowhere that I'll have to try out another day. We hit the path along the 84 at 8:40 and parted ways so I could solo the remaining hour to Apple in time for a most delicious pancake. Detouring on Ravenswood of course (vs the more direct Willow bridge) to hit up the dirt trail along Alma to El Palo Alto.
37 miles, 2:20

Friday, June 26, 2009

sf2g Solstice Ride

Thursday June 25th, PM. Riders: Christon, Brian, & Eric. Organized via sf2g, which meant that xton and I rode to the G beforehand on a route decided by the luck of the lights. Since the solstice came on Sunday, one weekday had to be picked for a ride home, and we lucked out with perfect weather. I brought the fixie as punishment for not riding all the way to sf.
Cameraphone speed warping effect on Cañada Rd:
San Andreas dam, which for once wasn't foggy, cold and (super) windy:
42 miles home. Map cut short after taking above picture (FirePin crashed):

San Bruno to Daly City

Thursday June 25th, AM. Not epic, but a first for me riding the newly completed Centennial Way/Linear Park path from San Bruno's bart to South San Francisco's bart. It has 3 at-grade road crossings which is ok, as only Chestnut Ave has a large amount of traffic. Mountain View's Stevens Creek trail by comparison, is a much longer path completely separated from street crossings. Gotta grow from somewhere.

I then cut over to the bike lane on Junipero Serra Blvd to head to Seton Medical center and later to Colma. Xray'ed the clavicle and as expected, I still have clearance to ride for a few more months!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Caltrain track route home

Wednesday June 24th, PM. Despite advance warning of massive hour+ southbound caltrain delays this evening, I gambled on northbound train 193. Gave up waiting after 23 minutes of it nowhere in sight and no status update anywhere. When I passed California Ave though, only one passenger was waiting so the train must have gone by. The next hourly train was right on time as I passed it at Hillsdale. Perfect evening weather for a ride since I had my insanely bright lights, but I should have stopped to put on the cycling shorts I was carrying (bag was full with a week's worth of dirty clothes + MB Air).
29 flat miles, 1:45.

The map shows how I briefly got lost finding:
- bike/ped bridge in mtn view connecting Wilkie Way and Miller Ave
- Loyola Ave turn off El Camino in Atherton. Jumped too early. Loyola Ave leads to multiple low-traffic, unofficial bike boulevards to downtown Redwood City.

Epic points awarded for:
- dirt path along Alma from El Palo Alto to Ravenswood. So much fun with bright lights.
- not taking the train at Hillsdale

Sunnyvale station says "is delayed 1' 6 minutes", where 1 foot == 1 hour.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Highway 1 to Tunitas Creek

Tuesday June 23rd, AM. Riders: Christon, Lina, & Nils. Organized via sf2g.
Pacifica at 7:30:
4 of us climbing away from Pacifica:
And then Niles went off solo tucked into his TT bars as we 3 maintained "Christon endurance pace", ie, Christon's heartrate must stay between 140-155, even when drafting off you:
On the Tunitas climb I pulled away and saw Niles for the first time in 20 miles. Passed him on the steep portion, which gave him enough motivation to pass me in full TT mode on the long shallow bit at the end. Wanting to get to work before 11, but needing just one more hill, we ended up continuing on together where I had my revenge up Cervantes:
60 miles, 3:40 (not including the 15 mins waiting at Sharp Park).

- took a nice path from Sneath through Skyline College spied in satellite view. This path, which juts off Moreland Dr, looks like the original Moreland Dr (possibly from before the county jail) which has been left to crumble.
- the 3rd Verde Rd sign is the magic one that leads to Lobitos Creek Cut-Off -- a faster way to get to the Tunitas climb. We failed to recognize it and took Tunitas all the way, passing the new bike hut (which had an Open sign!).
- iPhone's battery ran out near the end from overuse. Poor thing.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Monday morning

Monday June 22nd, AM. Bit of a late start this morning, so did a mostly direct route in with some exploration after Portola.

- dirt trails south of Arastradero between Alpine & Page Mill. Passing by Arastradero Creek was nice, but probably not as fast as taking left at a fork beforehand. Still much to explore there. Looks like it's even possible to pop out on Page Mill via a trail to Paseo del Roble.
- Quinnhill Rd in Los Altos to connect Summerhill Rd with Border/Foothill. I had meant to try Valley View Dr, but this one worked out just as well. The actual Border Rd to Foothill connection is a fun short dirt bit.
- Short dirt horse trail connecting Manzanita Way with Sand Hill south. Too short and sandy to be worth ever bothering with again.

Standard variations:
- Manzanita instead of Mountain Home for zero traffic
- Westridge/Cervantes/Peak/Golden Oak for a steep hilly cut-through from Portola Rd to Arastradero Rd
- Frontero/Granger/Deodara as a shady parallel alternate to Foothill
- Arastradero to Purissima to dirt trail along 280 to Okeefe Ln
- Millbrae's Spur Trail Park to Murchison/Hunt to get to Skyline

37 miles, 2:20

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Alameda de Las Pulgas

Thursday June 18th, AM. With this morning's caltrain turmoil in the east-Sunnyvale ghetto*, a semi-epic** commute was the only way to make a morning meeting. Alameda de Las Pulgas has the shortest mileage to work plus many bike lanes, with the tradeoff of more lights and traffic, especially in school season. It had been awhile since I rode this last and it was nice to see two spots with new bike lanes due to removing a car lane. One in particular, by Carlmont High School, prompted more than 100 angry letters from motorists, one with veiled threats, to Belmont officials. Now that school is out, Belmont has a bit of leeway time while it reconsiders free-ranging their high school students with non-parental forms of transit.
* a bay area ghetto is defined as any parcel of land between the bay and any at-grade caltrain intersection. The high speed rail aims to remedy this with full grade separation.
** semi-epic because there was only one significant hill, and no dirt was involved
32 miles, 1:50 during rush hour.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Alpine fireroad with Ed

Wednesday June 17th, AM. After advertising the ride to the sf2g list, the only taker was regular fellow-epic-commuter Ceaser. Alpine may have claimed his rear brake pads and knee skin on the way up, but it could not claim his ascension! Trail conditions are perfect for road bikes: completely dry except for one small portion with a little stream in the middle.
After Alpine, Ed had to descend Page Mill to go to something called "work", so I soloed it on Montebello.
Learned that the best way to avoid being eaten by a mountain lion is to offer it a small child (red circle my emphasis):
Spied this plucky fellow wandering Montebello road at (aptly named) Peacock Ct:
41 miles, 3.2 mellow hours.
Large pin gap on Alpine Rd is due to assisted GPS failing to find cell towers.

fixie day

Tuesday June 16th, AM. Bay way with Isaias and Murph to the Stevens Creek Trail. Explored a new route through Foster City but neglected to record it. Murph with the writeup: sub20olh blog.

(photo via murph)
PM. Coach to Colma & rode to the inner sunset for treats at Arizmendi (bike riders get a discount) and mouse meeting. I'd never ridden on any of these roads before, and based the route on the San Francisco Bike Map. 8 miles, 36 mins.
Missed the train, so rode home before the next one. 11.5 miles, 39 mins.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bay trail to Ringwood on in

Flat, lots of bike paths, 38 miles, little over 2 hours.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Easy 14 miles to Moscone. 53 mins on the fixie. Heavy single-occupancy rush hour traffic in SSF balanced by light, reverse-commute traffic on 3rd.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


No epic commute today. Here's links to a few google maps I've wasted way too much time making over the past year:
SF to Apple via Skyline/Cañada - with lots of variations south of Portola. Avoids the foggy Hwy 1 onramps.
Burlingame to Apple - complex map with all nearby bike stores marked. 4 parallel routes south and a nice low traffic way from Mtn View.
San Bruno to Burlingame - low traffic (avoids El Camino unlike the official bike route) and lists multiple hilly ways to get to & stay on Skyline.
San Bruno to SF - a work in progress that lists a few popular ways

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

home via rancho and foothills parks

Tuesday June 9th, PM. Commute home by cutting through the hills of Rancho San Antonio and Palo Alto Foothills parks. Most excellent singletrack from Moody Rd to Page Mill. First time taking this route north, so a fair bit of time was wasted getting lost a few times in Los Altos hills. Tons of bikers were still out on Cañada by the time I rolled through. Then it lightly rained from the 92 through Sawyer Camp Trail. 40 miles, 2:40, one barbed wire fence and short hike through the woods.

Delicious off-limits venison:

Jefferson to Kings to Skyline to Montebello

Tuesday June 9th, AM. Rode with Isaias, Ed, Tim, and Mark this morning. Somewhere around 40 miles with a bunch of climbing starting from Redwood city caltrain. Assisted gps failed big time so there are some large gaps in the map (gotta get a real gps). Climbed Kings in 25 mins from the righthand bend after Greer according to the phone. Screaming fast descent to the 84 trading pulls with Isaias. Fluffy bunny rabbits on Montebello.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Alpine to Montebello

Thursday June 4th, AM. Lots of off-road, car-free riding on this route. Steed was the '06 Litespeed Firenze road bike with standard compact gear set and 23c gatorskins on the original FSA wheels. Route:
- 2-hill steep climb through San Bruno to Skyline
- Sawyer Camp trail to San Mateo's Crystal Springs Rd
- Cañada, Manzanita, Portola Rd, Willowbrook Dr
- Alpine Rd all the way to Page Mill. Last 1/2 is a fireroad climb. Able to ride all but a few steep meters on the road bike
- Page Mill east to Montebello Rd (unmarked gate)
- Montebello Rd has a little paved climb, and then a scenic dirt climb and ride to the paved portion of the road which descends into 'tino.
46 miles, less than 3 hours, at work in time to shower and have a pancake before the cafe closed:

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Apple to Mtn View Caltrain #383, home in 1 hour, avoiding El Camino

Wednesday June 3rd, PM. Not epic, but fast and 50% biking.

Wednesday morning: 34.7 miles, 1:55

Wednesday June 3rd, AM. Direct fast route.

Tuesday evening via Montebello fireroad & Skyline: 46 miles, 3:20

Tuesday June 2nd, PM. Scouted out the way north on the Montebello fireroad to Page Mill. This is the unmarked entrance on Page Mill at one of the bends:
Clocked 35 mins up the paved portion of Montebello, 5 mins slower than my 2008 LKHC time. The slog home on Skyline was difficult due to all the extra climbing and headwind on top of that.

Tuesday morning: 34.3 miles, 1:53

Tuesday June 2nd, AM. Direct fast route.