• I’m in California this week on a family trip, from which I stole a morning and did the classic ride up and around the Marin County’s Mt. Tamalpais. The climb started in the dark forest, eventually opening into the […]

    • Nice one!

      My brother lives in CA, on the beach. I need to get out there at some point, I just can’t stomach the cost of flights these days, especially when I’d like a new wheelset. Or two.

      Working less would be nice, I’m less than a year into being back in the 9-5 world and it takes a big bite out of cycling time. Thankfully with more light in the evenings, I’ve being riding after work some nights. Oh, and I commute daily by bike so I can’t really complain.

    • Welcome back Keeper @jim (even though you never left).

    • Nice piece! There’s nothing like a nice ride on unfamiliar roads to test your mettle and make some reevaluations of life.

    • Yup, it has been a beautiful spring so far. Next time you are here rent a Madone from City Cycle. If you send them your fit numbers and show up with yr helmet, saddle and pedals they will have you out the door in no time. Then drop me a line and you can rip the legs off an old fat guy while you admire the views

    • I will be there this summer, am starting to calculate taking my bike along (wife unhappiness, cost, internal wife mortgage for time away…..)…. this is tougher than Rule Nr. 12 discussions.

    • My daughter and her husband live in the hills north of Santa Cruz. Took the bike down there (from home on the Olympic Peninsula) on a visit a couple years ago. Blasting down to SC, north along the coast highway, grinding up the steeps back to the high ridgelines…

      The place is magic. I’m a Bay Area native, so the region gets to me. All three of my kids were born and raised in Oregon, but two wound up in NorCal. Go figure.

    • A very good day.

    • @ Jim,

      Every ride on a bike is special. However, the solo rides up an unfamiliar climb awaken all the senses. I am sure you wore a wide grin through the suffering. It doesn’t get much better than that.

    • Wonderful article @Jim. Thanks for sharing.

    • Surfing one day and a bike ride the next, that’s my kind of California dreaming. Cheers @Jim.

    • Last week I finally heard back that I was offered a teaching position at Dunn High School in the Santa Ynez valley, just north of Santa Barbara. I’m stoked to ride those roads … but I’m also looking forward to visiting my sister in San Francisco, bringing a bike, and riding the roads of Marin county and the Santa Cruz mountains.

      And twenty-plus years after both she and I moved out West, my parents are finally making noises about relocating to be closer to us…

    • @Lingduay

      There are several ways up it, including a killer gravel grade. Such an amazing hill to have so close to a city. When I rode down there last Spring, I was confronted with similar moving impulses.

    • I live in England but did get over to California a couple of years’ back and realised a long held ambition – to climb the Nacimiento Fergusson road that rises up from the Pacific coast, off Highway 1 between Monterey and San Luis Obispo. This has to be one of the most awesome climbs in Ca. with stunning views back down to the Ocean. Descending back down to the coastal highway requires nerves of steel and very efficient brakes!

    • @cognition

      Hey, that’s great news! Sorry to lose your presence up here, but hearty congratulations anyway! When do you think you’ll be relocating?

      If my daughter stays in Santa Cruz, maybe we can meet up there for a ride one of these days.

    • I was out there riding a few weeks ago (I made the short drive out of Berkeley towards Mill Valley) and rode over Alpine Dam through to the Seven Sisters, looking over Stinson Beach

      . Absolutely stunning and beautiful weather

    • @PeakInTwoYears

      Thanks! We’re headed down in late July. Tentatively the 25th/26th. I’m still looking to head over your way for some more time on the Olympic Peninsula before leaving.

      If nothing else, I emailed @frank today to see about setting up a graveur Cogal from North Bend up to Snoqualmie Pass and back, a metric century with mostly gravel , a little singletrack, and some crappy pavement. Maybe we can tempt you to come over (close) to the big city…

    • Mt Tam is magnificent riding. Can’t believe I haven’t been over there since @frank was here. I need to fix that.

      Bay Area Cogal may need to return to Marin this year…

    • One time I had the opportunity to ride from the house of some relatives of the VMH in San Jose. Rode over the hills to Santa Cruz. Couldn’t have asked for a better ride. One forgets that California isn’t all LA sometimes.

    • @cognition

      Right on.

      Keep me informed!

    • As some of the Seattle Velominati know, I’m temporarily living in Oakland these days. The cycling around here is great. My niece took me up Mt Diablo a few weeks ago. What a magnificent ride. In the next few weeks, we’re planning on doing Mt. Hamilton and Tam as well. In Seattle, a climb is usually measured in hundreds of feet. Around here, climbs are measured in thousands of feet.

      We’ll be here until November or so – what’s the word on a Bay Area Cogal? Are old, fat, slow climbers welcome?

    • @Jamie

      You’re welcome to meet me at Cole Coffee and go do the after-work Redwood-Pinehurst loop any old day, Jamie. I can promise you neither old nor fat, but I can bring the slow like nobody’s business.

    • @Jamie

      As noted above, thinking Marin. Usually do it mid July but might be late June. Stay tuned.

    • Shawn and Nate – great to hear.

      Shawn, I’m staying near Mills College, so do the Redwood gig regularly. Just love that kicker at the top climbing from Mountain (not). From where and when do you roll? The rest of the week is pretty packed for me, and I’m traveling all of next week. Starting the following week, however, I’ll be in dire need of some miles. Feel free to email me at: jelenbaas(at)duvoice(dot)com

    • Oops – reading comprehension on my end. Cole Coffee – (right near Noodle Theory – yes?). Got it .

    • @Jamie

      Oh man, I just go up Butters when I approach low like that. Pinehurst kicker is enough for me later in the loop. Will PM you at the addy listed.

    • Like it @jim. nice piece

    • Thank you for that excellent piece. This makes me realize that I’m really lucky and happy that I am not playing golf like the rest of fat middle aged male America.

    • As someone who grew up in the Bay Area, and has since relocated, I’m now just a smidge more homesick…

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