Two miles south on Bradley Rd, I turn left onto Clark Ave. From here the next 13 miles are part of the Solvang Century ride which happens the first Saturday in March every year. I cross over the 101 freeway, I'm home free and in the country. An easy climb up Clark hill and then a zoom down to Dominion Rd where I turn right. From there about 2 more miles takes me to Dominion Grade, though I'm going downhill so it's quite a fun ride. Dominion T's into Palmer Canyon road which was recently re-paved (THANK THE GODS, it was HORRIBLE!) while I was on my travel sometime this year. Palmer takes me to Foxen Canyon, and from there I get out to Tepesquet Rd, which encompasses my first 15 miles (ie: my warm-up).
note: I must warn you now, this got quite LONG with a LOT of pictures. I guess that's what happens when I'm taking you on a virtual tour of my fav ride....hope you're comfy, and maybe you should have a canteen of water...OR an ice chest w/ a nicely chilled 6-pack or something...you'll need it!)
Fair warning. On with the ride!
I hope to kick this bug completely during the coming week, as next weekend is LIVESTRONG Davis! My brother Greg and I will be driving up next Friday morning, getting there in time to help our "Sist'a from another Mist'a Angie do her grocery shopping for our Team Fatty takeover of the Cycling Hall of Fame (which goes down Friday evening). Saturday will bring a fun short ride somewhere, along with much coffee and hanging out in the LIVESTRONG Village, and then the Awards banquet Sat evening. I don't know if I'll be going to the banquet for sure this year or not...I didn't do very good in my fundraising, being gone 4 months of the year thus far. But I've done what I can (and I won't stop fundraising after Davis either...I keep putting out my Muffins, Bagels, Fruit, and Yogurt at work all year long with my profits going to LS). And Sunday is THE RIDE. This year they've cut out almost all the climbing (WHY?) on the century...it's under 1000' now. I don't get it. Who wants to do a FLAT century? I might just ride the metric with my Sist'a Angie (while I'm assuming Greg will get in a FAST group and shoot for a sub-5 hour 100 miles). I'm just there to have FUN! And eat PIE! And BRATS! And re-aquatint myself with Team Fatty..which is a WONDERFUL group of people!
And so...a few things before I close this GINORMOUS'ly LONG post. I see they (USADA) are going after Lance. I won't go into that much here, as there are so many places that discuss stuff like this (especially over at Rant's place!)...but WHAT a waste of our tax dollars IMO. And I'm constantly flabbergasted by people who are ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN he was a doper. I mean, I can see having 'suspicions' and such, but to be SURE? What is the evidence? You know, that pesky thing called PROOF? I sure hope I'm never accused of any crime and THESE people are on my jury...I'd like to think in THIS country we are innocent until PROVEN guilty. And obviously he's never been proven guilty, or this wouldn't be happening cuz he'd already be in jail and had his TDF titles stripped. I say everybody needs to take a chill pill and wait and see what's PROVEN. Just a thought. No vigilante hangings please!
And FINALLY...the Tour Divide race is still on-going (here is the link again):
OMG is this SUCH an INSANE race! The 2 leaders are past Rawlings Wyoming today and going strong, so far on pace to beat last years mens record. And Ester Hornayi...she is on pace to KILL Jill Homers womens record set back in her 2009 ride (of which Jill wrote an AWESOME book detailing her struggle called "Be Brave, Be Strong"). I peek in on the map a few times a day and just MARVEL at the inhuman-ness of these folk. The 2 leaders are riding almost 180 miles a day...which is just BEYOND INSANE! They will be entering Colorado tomorrow (where it gets REALLY hard!), having passed the half-way point (around 1300 miles) sometime yesterday. I just peeked...they're over 1550 miles and going strong (at 11:35pm Wyoming time btw!). I used to think the TDF (and the Giro, and the Vuelta) were the hardest races in the world. I've changed my mind. THIS is far and away harder. And it's SELF-SUPPORTED! Carry your own stuff. Find and BUY your own food. Fix your own bike, or carry/push it to a shop (wherever that might be) if it breaks. Ride as long as you want. Sleep (or NOT apparently) when you want. And try NOT to die. Just amazing!
And with that I bid you good-day (night).