Yesterday (Saturday, June 2) I had planned on tackling Mount Hamilton, per “Coach Ben’s” instructions… it was either that or finding another “TM” rider to do the big kids’ decide-and-ride century over Mr.Morgan & Diablo from Berkeley….. and since that was listed as an M+ ride, my TM-presence on it would have been a bit, well — let’s just say “Foolhardy” and quite solo.
In any event, my day started very slowly, feeling a bit bleary from a slight Bollywood-film-induced sleep deprivation, coupled with some intestinal cramping and general fogginess from 2 glasses of red wine from Friday eve; besides which, after spending the last three days over in Benicia playing landlady, a task three different appointments involving whole house and crawl space inspections, plumbing repairs, and water/soil remediation in crawl space necessitated by aforementioned plumbing mishap (pinhole leak in kitchen sink waste lateral line under house causing a month or so of smelly standing water in a trench the length of the foundation on the plumbing line side of the house), and which also necessitated going to the DARK side and driving the car each of those days between home (Albany), Benicia and work (Berkeley) Wednesday-Friday and therefore missing my bike commute…. anyway, come Saturday morning, i just didn’t have the stomach for jumping either into the car to drive to Alum Rock to start the Mt. Hamilton up & back from there, nor take any form of public transportation (BART/bus), which meant my 44 mi ride would suddenly jump to more like 75 miles… starting late….
so i devised my own “decide and ride” loop which ended up being Albany – stop sign route to SPDR, Castro Ranch Rd via the Valley View-Olinda Way bypass, Alhambra Valley Rd, Mama Bear, Happy Valley all the way in to downtown Lafayette (fast & SWEET!!!), then meandering the back streets behind Mt. Diablo Blvd until rejoining Mt. Diablo Blvd on the bike-friendly downtown bypass route, past Lafayette Reservoir to Acalanes, then catching Hidden Valley Rd to the St. Stephen’s bike path to Orinda, and my final Wildcat/Spruce home-pony stretch…..
about 43.75 miles total, about 11.1 mph, nothing too hilly, taking time for a change to stop often and shoot some pics with my “Smart” phone’s camera….much of it pastoral and with the wildflowers out on Alhambra Valley Road and the Bears, simply spectacular. Also enjoyed the “lemonade for kids” for 50 cents on Happy Valley (at the house a few lots before the Happy Valley / Upper Happy Valley intersection. (June 8th they will also be out….. check it out… not homemade, a bit watery which i actually prefer on a bike ride, but cute kids and a nice, impromptu stop.
some pics here: