Short report today for a long ride... I'd write more, but I'm tired!
First off, good rider turnout: Mary Ann, Maurice, Christian, and me. I know that I've said it for the last few rides, but... the weather excellent for riding today! The Ramona Loop was mostly cloudy and cool until we went over Mount Woodson and dropped down into the Valley of the Sun (aka Ramona) and then it was just plain beautiful for the Highland Valley Road section. It was Christian's first ride on HVR and he was duly impressed with the climbs, drops, corkscrew turns, and views.
The Del Dios Loop was also pretty nice, with a lot more sunshine for Maurice and me (Mary Ann and Christian having dropped off after the first loop.) We made more stops on the second loop, usually requested by me (OK, all of the stops were requested by me.) The best stop was the last: Petersons Doughnut Shop in Escondido. Say no more!
Next week it's Group Choice for the route...
Date: Tuesday April 5, 2011
The 'Anything Can Happen Day' Ride... group choice for route and mileage. (This one is usually easy.)
Check out these Bicycles!
This is the last week that I'll be using the Yahoo group mail. Please setup your email address on the new server if you want to stay in the loop.
Nice turnout for today's ride, although it was a rarity for VVV in that the group was Guys Only today: Rick, Maurice, Jerry, Les, and me. There was only the slightest chance of rain and we managed to avoid it for 99.99% of the ride. I don't think that the .01% can even count as being 'in the rain' as we barely registered that a sprinkle had fallen on us. OK, I'll give Liz a free pass this week as she has a broken bone in her hand, but for anyone else who missed out, a reminder: we don't ride if it is actually going to rain, but the threat, of a hint, of an off-chance, of a possible sprinkle or two, isn't going to cancel the ride. :-)
Oh yeah, about the ride... gotta say that conditions were excellent - crisp, clean, air and lots of puffy clouds with patches of brilliant blue sky. We rerouted a bit to wander over to the 56 bike path where we checked out the improvements to the pavement along the edge the housing development near Carmel Country Road. It was nice to have a smooth surface to roll on, but it seemed like the amount of work done shouldn't have required a detour for six months! The ride out from the end of the path took us to Torrey Pines State Beach for a little bit of surf watching and then it was on to Del Mar. The return route from Del Mar meandered over to San Dieguito Road and we made our coffee stop at Cafe Positano. The turkey and swiss croissant was as good as ever there!
On the way out we met a fellow named Chris Evertson, who is opening a bicycle store in the shopping center where the cafe is located. So we rolled over to check it out. Wowww... that's the first bike shop I've ever seen with marble floors and wooden fixtures. It looked like it would be a nice little art gallery and I could imagine the bikes being displayed as such. They had a few on-site: Pinarello, BMC, Colnago; some high-end equipment for sure. The remainder of the ride went by quickly as we were all running a little late due to the extra time spent looking over those budget-busting bikes.
Next week we revisit the Gran Fondo...
Gran Fondo I
Date: Tuesday March 29, 2011
Ride one or both of the loops on this Figure 8 course. (Ramona Loop first and then the Del Dios Loop.)
Some folks have already registered with the email server on the new VVV website. Thanks for getting signed up! I'll be ending additional invitations to the VVV members who are still using the Yahoo group mail this week.
Well, it was just five weeks ago that we tied the all-time VVV ridership record of seven cyclists and today we did it again. Today's Magnificant Seven consisted of: Liz, Mary Ann, Shauna, Lauren, Jerry, Sam, and me. Shauna and Lauren were on their first VVV ride (thanks for the recommendation, Sam) and did a great job of it. My computer tallied an average speed of 15.20mph for the route, which makes it, one of our peppier efforts. I'm not saying anyone was out to impress the new riders or vice-versa, but 45 miles, 4000'... you do the math. :-)
My original plan was to make our coffee break in Escondido at a rather authentic Irish Pub, but when we reached San Elijo Hills the group had to make descisions about time available to ride: Liz had to split first to make a beeline for Poway and Sam needed a caffeine and sugar jolt before tackling Elfin Forest, so... the new stop was the coffee shop in San Elijo Hills. It was a good one too and certainly had plenty of choices for fueling up: the brownies were intense chocolate delights and the blueberry squares were awesome.
The trip through Elfin Forest/Harmony Grove went by fast and at the end of it Sam and Mary Ann headed back the short way to Poway while the remainder of the crew explored the longer, but flatter, route through Escondido.
Next week we go coastal...
Date: Tuesday March 12, 2011
Maybe take a side-trip up Torrey Pines?
The idea of dumping the Yahoo Group as a front-end for the Valle Verde website has started to gather steam. There is now a Group Email feature available on the new website. Check it out and register with the VVV email server: VVVelo. I'll be posting the ride reports and other items on both Yahoo and VVVelo for awhile, but eventually Yahoo will be history so register with the new site to stay in the loop.
Nice turnout for today's ride: Liz, Mary Ann, Les, Sam, and me. The VVV faithful were rewarded with excellent conditions and a route with just enough hills to make it interesting. The early going out of Poway and over Lake Hodges found us dodging a few small, sandy spots left over from the recent rains but not anything to worry about. Just into Escondido we saw Jerry and another rider, but they were on another route which would eventually take them to Swami's. We passed them a little later as they worked on repairing a flat. (Hope you got it going again quickly, Jerry.)
As planned, we did the loop in Valley Center in the reverse direction from the route map. We passed by Lake Wohlford Road and went straight up the hill into Valley Center before turning onto Woods Valley Road. That section is a really scenic one, and we all enjoyed the easy rollers and views of ranchs and oak-covered hills. More of the same along Lake Wohlford Road where Sam and Les took turns attacking. All I can figure is that you guys really wanted to get to the cafe!
The cafe was as good as ever: Grilled Egg Sandwiches, triple-filtered water, and that special roadhouse style. The descent on Lake Wohlford Road was great (about 40mph) and provided a nice thrill as payment for the earlier climbing. Also on the return trip, we came across another rider-friend, John Branson, who was with a group of lunch-time riders that cycle out from the office park on the west side of Rancho Bernardo. Too bad they go out too late in the day to join us.
Next week we'll be riding the ever-popular...
Elfin Forest Loop
Date: Tuesday March 15, 2011
We'll do this loop in the clockwise direction, rather than the counter-clockwise route in the RideWithGPS map.
Lastly, I'm considering the idea of dumping the Yahoo Group as a front-end for the Valle Verde website. This site would be the new go-to location: VVVelo. We would use the forum feature for communication and the blog for ride reports. It would be nice if I could add a group email feature to the new website...working on that. In the meantime, let me know if you think we should keep Yahoo.
Great weather for our ride today and we had a turnout of four to take advantage of it: Liz, Mary Ann, Rick, and me. It didn't take long to decided that a perfect ACHD destination would be the Lake Hodges Dam, which is spilling water for the first time since 2005. So we did the Del Dios Loop: dropping down San Dieguito Road into Fairbanks Ranch and then going over to Rancho Santa Fe before climbing up to the dam. Maybe someone can post some pix or video of the water overtopping the dam?
After checking that out, we went over to the edge of Harmony Grove and entered the bike path to go back into the center of Escondido. While in town, we stopped at Panaderia Oaxaquena (aka) Panaderia Ortiz, located just off Grand Avenue on Juniper Street. They have a variety of authentic pan dulces, and at 3 for a dollar it is inexpensive fun to sample different types. The only downside was: no seating - oh well, the pastries were worth standing for. Finished up the ride with a trip over Lake Hodges where we got to see where all the water going over the dam was coming from!
Next week 's ride...
Date: Tuesday March 8, 2011
Scenic riding on Woods Valley Road and along Lake Wohlford! Stop at the Lake Wohlford Cafe??