June 24, 2009

Riding in San Jose…well, Morgan Hill anyway

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On Sunday morning, I got the chance to put the Bike Friday to it’s first out-of-state test early in the morning in Morgan Hill. As I mentioned before, my plan on the trip is to get up on as many mornings as I can, before everyone else gets up, and put in a quick 15 or 20 miles, fold the bike back up and be ready for the day. I won’t get the chance to do any epic rides, but more of the Tour de Area Around Our Hotels. At least I’m getting the chance to keep my legs spinning.

I was ready for some sunny California riding, but that was not to be had on Sunday. It was a chilly sub-50 degrees when I set out. I almost didn’t bring arm warmers or layers, but I’m really glad I packed everything I thought I might need for all weather occassions. The sun eventually came out, but it never really warmed up to the point of taking any layers off.

The majority of my riding was simply road riding, and rough road riding at that. Next time I think that Salem/Keizer has bad roads, I’ll remember the areas I’ve ridden on vacation and be thankful. In fact at one point, the road was so bad I was thankful that there was an access road off to the side and took the chance to take the BF off-road and get a little psuedo-cross training in.

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I didn’t get to spend hours out cranking up hills, but there were definitely some decent little climbs as I circled around the community we were staying in. Many of the great looking hillls all had private access roads leading up to them, so I climbed as much as I could on the public roads I could find, and still enjoyed some great views.

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For miles along the driving part of the road trip, my wife kept telling the kids to keep their eyes out for palm trees. And sure enough, once we hit north California, we started seeing them. Along my morning ride I also saw plenty of them, including this really driveway to a home out in the middle of nowhere. I figured they wouldn’t mind me posing my BF in front of their house to prove I was out riding in the chilly California morning sun.

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Now, I REALLY expected to see some bike folk out and about. We’re in California, right? Nope, in fact, I went almost an hour without seeing ANY bikes. Finally, I saw a dude out on a Trek who looked like he was heading out to do the same route I just did in reverse. As I rode back through Morgan Hill to the hotel, I was impressed with the size of the bike paths in town. Take a look at these babies:

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Seriously, you could park a truck on the right side of that bike path, and still have a bike path twice the normal width to the left. Oh wait, a few blocks up the road, it turns out that’s exactly what they do. Still, a very roomy and comfy bike bath for riding through town. On a final note, the BF seems to be holding up well. I’m and idiot and forgot to bring a pump of any kind, and still don’t have a spare tube for this size of tire, so I’m stoping by a shop in Tucson today (my ride report from the Tucson ride will be up in the next couple days) to hopefully pick up a tube and pump.

Two states travelled, and two wheels down in each state so far! Yeehaw!

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