Tuesday, August 5, 2008

My SoCal Biking Trip - Thursday & Friday

I have been planning this trip to Southern California, San Diego specifically, since my friend Andy's visit out there in early April.

So, the day finally arrived last week...my flight from RDU to SAN was July 30 and I would be staying out there until Monday, August 4. I haven't flown in 12 years, so I was just a bit apprehensive about this flying thing....dang...there was nothing to be apprehensive about! I loved the take-offs! All flights to and from SAN were pretty much uneventful.

I arrived out there around 9:30pm (pst) and was picked up by my friend Jason. Jason has been out to the WNC mountains to ride with me and Andy over Christmas and for the May ride that several of the local Raleigh people rode. We got a bite to eat at an all night diner then he dropped me off at my motel in Del Mar. I didn't take my bike with me, as Jason rides a Cervelo R3 in 54cm, which we made work for me. We did this by using a shorter stem (brought by me), a 0-offset post (brought by me) and my saddle. The fit was really good. The bike rides fantastically great!!!! Since I did not bring a bike and we were going to get his fit to me Thursday evening, I had nothing really planned for that day....just some sight seeing.

So, with no car rented (hadn't planned on it), Jason let me borrow his for the day. He drives a BMW 3 series and lemme tell ya....that is one awesome car to drive. 6-speed, road hugging machine! I had heard about this pie company, Julian Pie Company, (Pie Rides from somewhere in SoCal to the Pie shop) and decided that I would drive up there for pie. Ulterior motive was to get his car out on a twisty curvy road and let it rip! OMG. What a blast that car was to drive. It sticks to the road & curves like glue! It was about 1.5hr drive up and back. I had lunch up there - turkey sandwich on whole wheat and a slice of strawberry/rhubarb pie. Damn that pie was good. Purchased an apple pie to bring back...

Once headed back towards San Diego, I decided to drive out to Coronado to see the famed Hotel del Coronado. There were lots of people & cars there, really no convenient place to park, so I drove to the end of the island and on the way back took pics of the hotel. Headed on back to my motel for a shower before going to pick Jason up at work. Since we had a bit of time to kill, he took me to his work to show me around and to Mt. Soledad. That is some serious climbing to get to the top of that.

After this, we picked up another guy who was having dinner with us that evening. Dave chose the restaurant - a korean bbq type. I had some really good food, stuff that I have never had before, but it was very good. I'm all for trying out new things. :) Prior to going to supper, we stopped at wal-mart for some zipties...Dave let me borrow his powertap wheel and equipment and we wanted to put it on Jason's bike. Bad thing is...the zipties were too big, so we were unable to get that stuff on prior to the ride on Friday. So, back to my hotel for some rest before the ride on Friday.

Friday's Ride:
First - I wish there were a way to insert pics like there are in forums....it's a real PITA to add pics.

Jason picked me up around 9am for our drive up to Oceanside to meet with Grumpy Pig (Frank) & igoyippy4skippy (Andrew). We arrived shortly before 10am, got the bikes ready, met those 2 guys and off we went. It was a very nice morning, temps in the low 70's (i think). We headed off, taking the road right next to the ocean. Gosh, it's beautiful there!

We rolled at a nice easy pace until we got on the main road, and then it picked up a bit. I don't know how fast we were going as I had no computer, but it seemed like we were moving at a good clip. We were meeting jsigone (Jeff) & another guy, Ian (IaninSD) at a coffee shop in Carlsbad (?). Made really good time to the coffee shop, we were about 10min early. Had to make a few adjustments to the saddle tilt and then Jason and I went next door to the LBS and aquired some zip ties to attach Dave's PT to the bike. Got that done and all of us were off again.

A bit of a nice long flat section and the guys just took off. We were still moving good! There were a few rollers along the way and I managed to stay with these guys for most of them. The short ones anyways. The longer ones, I just dropped back and let them go. I learned quickly, riding with Andy and others who climb well, to not try and keep up. I either ride at my pace or blow up trying to keep up. That definitely wasn't the plan for this ride.

We had bike lanes all the way, IIRC. That's really nice, compared to what/where I'm used to riding here in the Raleigh area. And, for the most part, the drivers are pretty courteous. Pass through Del Mar...saw this one woman dressed pretty scantily, and she had tan lines galore! I guess the way she was dressed would have been a little better if she had at least been tanned all over.

Once through Del Mar, it's downhill for a ways then up Torrey Pines. I think Jason said it's like a 6% grade. Very doable by me, but at my pace. The PT doesn't seem to be registering the speed correctly but I think the power is good. So I settled into a pace/power I knew I could climb at comfortably and just climbed. Frank, Jeff, Andrew, and Ian took off! Dang, these guys have some legs!! I don't think Frank has enough leg muscles though. /rolleyes/ I think I got a couple of pics as he was outa the saddle climbing Torrey Pines. Nice.

Anyways, Jason stayed with me and we made it to the top, not in a record breaking pace, but something sustainable for me. I believe I climbed most of it with one gear saved, which I used towards the very top. Upon reaching the top, the guys were waiting on us, we chit-chatted for a bit, Ian left to go back to work (?) and the rest of us took the route back down TP that's more scenic. Then, it's climbing back up to Del Mar. Again, just taking it at my pace. Wasn't too bad and the legs were feeling good.

Once through Del Mar, there's a long stretch of flat and Mr. I'm Going To Put The Fire Out (Frank) took the lead...we were really rolling at a good clip, I had wind from that and from the cross/headwind...out pops the contact! Tried to get it pushed back in, but that didn't work. Oh well. Never have lost one before riding.

One thing...what's up with the roads??? You'd think out there that they wouldn't be so rough, but dang! Our rough roads in NC are smooth compared to these! The BRP is like riding on glass! Sooooo smooth!

We stopped at a deli in Carlsbad, I think, and had lunch. Very good sammich. Turkey on whole wheat, some Salt & Vinegar chips, & drink. Yummy. Sat around talking and watching people for a while, then it was off to finish the ride....only 3 more miles to go! Frank stopped at his house and the rest of us went on to the train station. Jeff & Andrew rode more - maybe 70 miles total. Jason and I loaded up our bikes and then headed to his parents house. We stayed there Friday and Saturday evenings.

Oh yea, not sure on distance/pace, but I think we got around 45 miles and maybe 16-17avg.

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