Doing it all the hard way...

Sunday, January 29, 2017


Thomas said you can never go home again.  Mick said that you don’t always get what you want.  Evo has said I should know better. With a gap in the schedule Hottie and I thought we could head to the land of my youth and enjoy some sunshine, relax and get in some warm bike rides.
I shall spare you the details but let’s just say we were zero for three.
 Hottie and I rode around Solvang and the rolling hills were rolling right along.   
Our route started on the double century course before diverting for some climbing and a shortcut back to Solvang.

 A smattering of steepness kept us honest.  Note the summer apparel........
Putting the Bi in Bison
 The rollers did lead us back to Solvang and a nice sandwich.

After letting the next storm pass and visiting the happiest goddamn place on earth I finally had what I hoped would be my day in the sun. 
Sure enough the sun was out. It was in the forties (just like at home) but the sun was out.
 This is my right knee.  I had forgotten what it looked like......
The wind along PCH was predictably chilly.  Sticking with my alternative facts I had skipped the knee warmers and was pretending it was hot.
 Son of a beach
I was following a Garmin route I had created after communicating with a So Cal expert and eavesdropping on the Hagens Berman training camp routes. At Yerba Buena I took a sharp left and the climbing was underway.
I grew up in So Cal and learned to ride a bike there.  I went from a Sting Ray to a Motobecane Nomad ten speed that I used exclusively for riding to school.  
In college I had a SR road bike I used as a commuter.  I still have no idea what ever happened to that bike.  
Despite twenty years of bike riding in So Cal I never had a pair of bike shorts or rode in the Malibu hills. This was my chance to see my worlds collide. 
As I gained elevation I kept looking up and ahead and seeing road cuts in the mountains and hoping my route would go way up there.  The pavement was really pretty bad but I was climbing slowly so the bumps didn’t bother me too much. 
 Does this shadow make me look fat?
When I stopped to take a photo I saw a plane taking off from Pt. Mugu. I watched it until I flew behind this rock peak.
I settled into a high zone three pace and just enjoyed the scenery.

After climbing I enjoyed some time at elevation and the route was almost playful.
At one point the route turned down a private drive that led to a school for young criminals.  I say young criminals because I’m not sure how to spell juvenile delinquents. I don’t mean to imply that it is a school that teaches kid how to be criminals but rather a school that is attended only by youth who are criminals and for some reason they don’t want them in regular schools.
At the end of the playfield there was an old, and I do mean old, road that climbed out and up.  At this point the hot sauce I had on my morning eggs was contemplating an escape from the same route that it had entered my body. This combined with the steepness of the route had me wondering if this would be a type two fun sort of day. 
Soon enough the road pointed down and I got ready to put my Swissstop blue pads to the test. In contrast to the climb there was a lot of water on the roads from the recent rains.  Enough water that any thoughts of a flying descent were dashed. 
 I could read the signs but I had little idea where I was.
Down we go!

Down toward Thousand Oaks and then through Hidden Valley. 
 These roads felt harder than I expected.  After looking at the STRAVA elevation profile I realized it was a series of slight uphills. 
Soon I was on the final descent into Camarillo.
The final few miles back to WW2 on PCH went quickly. 

In my mind this was what I had in mind for this trip:
This was what we got:
 Hottie got some good pictures.

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