September 26, 2009

biking mt hamilton

so yesterday i took the day off work to join about 20 sun (and former sun) employees for an annual bike ride up mt hamilton. i started the climb around 9am along with two other folks, and the rest of the group started at around 9:30am. it was way more climbing that i've ever done before on my bike, ~4500 feet worth. but i managed to make it to the top, and i did it all without using the lowest front gear (which i'm actively trying to avoid when riding now). according to my little bike computer, the ride was 19 miles and took me 2 hours and 58 mins. we hung out at the top for about an hour eating, relaxing, and socializing. the view from the top of mt hamilton is impressive, with monterey bay visible to the south-west and mt tam to the north-west. It was pretty warm (90+ F) at the top but at least there was a refreshing breeze. going down only took one hour. two folks had tire blowouts on the way down, but happily no one was injured. i was really glad that my new slick tires worked well. (two days earlier i had replaced my knobby mountain bike tires with slicks to make riding on roads a little easier.) unfortunately the cool breeze seemed to vanish once we started the descent and there was a hot wind in my face for most the way down. also, ithought i'd be looking forward to the bits of shade i passed on the way up, but i quickly discovered that these bits of shade going down were hiding all the bumps in the road that i wanted to avoid when riding at higher speeds. regardless it was still a great ride, and i've been told by friends that since i've successfully done that ride, i can do any other ride in the bay area.

after getting home i cleaned up, took some aleve, relaxed a bit, and then headed out to city pub with ronda for a burger and beers. a couple friends (who also went on the ride) met up with us at city pub, and subsequently we went to the beer garden behind the staudt haus for a couple more drinks and some large bavarian pretzels. it was a pretty good friday. needless to say, i'm a little sore today and i figured i'd skip my normal sat ride up old la honda road in favor of doing some work around the house.

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