Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mixed terrain ride, cows, 70 degrees, January...

We've been having unseasonably warm weather. The thermometer topped out at over 70 degrees yesterday. I set out on a ride to take advantage of the weather and my day off. I had set up the Rawland with the 700x45 wheels for the mixed-terrain ride I was planning. The burly knobs of the Panaracer Fire Cross tires were definitely evident while riding on the road, especially with air pressure at about 45psi. While riding I had an idea to do a little profiling to the tires' knobs to get them to roll a little smoother on the road but still have good traction in the dirt. I'll give that a try sometime soon and report back.

I left Point Reyes Station and headed up Sir Francis Drake through Inverness and up to Pierce Point Road. My plan was to take the a dirt road down to Marshall Beach, have lunch and head back home. However, as I was riding back, I decided to climb up Mt. Vision Road to the Inverness Ridge Trail to add some more climbing and dirt riding. The climb up Mt. Vision Road is steep. I've done it plenty of times on my road bike with road gearing, albeit with a compact chainring set-up, but with my seeming lack of fitness, I was thankful for the granny gear on the Rawland on some pitches.
Satellite image of the route compliments my GPS device.
From Ride Photos

Elevation profile.
From Ride Photos

With the incredible weather, the views out on Pierce Point were incredible. Green and blue dominated.
From Ride Photos

This is the result of hitting the "take-the-picture-button" when I wasn't planning to. It actually turned out fairly interesting with the splash of red on the green background.
From Ride Photos

This is what a dirt road ride is all about. Thin ribbon of gray/brown bisecting green pastures.
From Ride Photos

How'd you like to live and work with views of the Pacific Ocean like this. The only problem is their work day begins at O-Dark:30 and ends well after the sun sets. This is one of the historic dairy farms that dot the landscape in the Point Reyes National Seashore.
From Ride Photos

Stopped for lunch at Marshall Beach. The water was as clear as the sky.
From Ride Photos

This is where the happy cows live. Milk from these bovines is probably on the shelf of the market today. And yeah, there was that special scent in the air.
From Ride Photos

Self-portrait overlooking the seashore.
From Ride Photos

Drake's Bay
From Ride Photos

The steed of the day.
From Ride Photos

So, after over 3 hours of riding, a couple of stops for photos and food, I roll out Inverness Ridge Trail and onto Limantour Road at the exact same moment that my friend Amanda is coming up Limantour Road on her bike on her way back from Limantour Beach. That is a freaky coincidence. We rode back down to the valley together before she headed back to the inn and I to get a cappuccino at Toby's.

Even with the temps in the 70's, the ride back down Limantour Road was speckled with spots where the temperature plummeted down into the 40's in these weird cold spots. The feeling was akin to soaking in a hot tub and then plunging into a cold pool with this instand hot/cold sensation.

I just hope we get some rain soon.

(What's playing: Ozzy Osbourne Crazy Train)


Chris Cowan said...

I am so jelous. I use to do rides just like this till I messed up my knees. Someday...

Head Honcho said...

Before you go cutting knobs there Mike, may you consider getting a set of the DryX 1.7's? I know, I know. They're from the big evil "T", but I picked up a set this past WE at the local swap meet. They certainly do look promising for smoother dirt/gravel recon rides.

blackmountaincycles said...

Or I could also just ride the heck out of the Fire Cross tires to get the knobs "seasoned" ;-)

Gloria said...

Glad to hear you made it out!