Russ and Sheila, outstanding members of the Almaden Cycle Touring Club, lead a 2-day ride around the San Francisco Bay at least once every year. Since I was riding Levi’s Gran Fondo on day 1, I met them in Novato to ride with them and 25 other club members down to San Jose on Sunday, day 2. The group of us had dinner at the restaurant attached to the hotel and I had my favorite pre-ride meal again: spaghetti & meatballs.
After another restless night at the luxurious EconoLodge of Novato, we had a great breakfast thanks to Russ. The night before he bought various cereals, milk, bread, yogurt, breakfast pastries, and other tasty goodies. Joanne, the queen of rider support, said to meet at 6:15 in her room so my roomate, Ben, and I were there at 6:13. I’m sure she appreciated the promptness.
Following breakfast we hit the road at 7:15 to see some beautiful California scenery while we churned out 100 miles back home in the South Bay. The ride was casual which was good for me after the 100 miles the day before. Joanne did a great job supporting the ride and swapping off with other riders driving her fully stocked truck so she could put in some miles on her bike, too.
As usual, Russ and Sheila ensured that everyone had a fun ride and made it home safely. There were mechanical problems here and there with loose lights and flat tires but all were resolved quickly so we could keep working our way south.
By the time we made it to mile 80, my legs were feeling the 180 miles and we were hitting the toughest part of the ride: the 10-mile climb up Calaveras. Russ and Sheila kept me company as I suffered through every stroke of my pedals. I was so glad to see the top of that climb. My knees were both hurting more than normal for some reason. Ouch.
At about mile 95 I parted ways with the remaining crew as they headed back to Russ’s and Sheila’s house for sundaes and their cars. I gingerly pedaled the remaining 10 miles home and was glad to finally make it back.
A few photos from the ride here. .