Thursday, December 11, 2008

Mountain bike mania

I caught the mountain bike virus. Ever since the ironman I have been reluctant to ride my tribike, preferring the trails instead. I just love the variety and the new challenges. The weather is cooperating too. It is sunny, albeit a bit cold, but overall excellent mountain bike weather. The trails are in great shape, not too dusty and no mud at all. It is heaven.

One thing about Oakland is that it is a true outdoors paradise. With the best weather in the continental US, never too hot or too cold, and some of the nicest parks anywhere, it simply can't be beat. Now if we could just get rid of at least half the cars and the crowds, things would be perfect.

I rode almost 30 miles today. First to Redwood Park, then on the East Bay trail to Pinehurst, then down and up Redwood Rd. to Bort Meadow. Then along the bottom and up the grade to Grass Valley, where I took GoldenRod to the end. A short stretch on Skyline to the park and a return on the West trail to the Redwood gate. Home from there.

I measured the Bort Parking lot to Skyline section on Google Earth and it is about 5.5 miles. All of that is trails. Unfortunately for you hard core guys out there, these are double track or fire-road trails. No single track in the East Bay. We have excellent single track, but none of it is bike-legal except some short stretches in Joaquin Miller Park. Some of my friends don't care but I prefer the fire roads anyways. They are plenty challenging for me as is and they also offer enough variety to go fast and they have some pretty nasty climbs/descents.

I saw very few people today other than some professional dog walkers and the occasional runner. You can always tell the pro-dog folks because they have 6-7 dogs, all different breeds, and they clog up the trail, scrambling their dogs to make room when you call out. 

The funniest thing I saw was this middle-aged guy who was running wearing jeans and a nice white shirt, just a tad short of business casual. He was right there on the trail, away from civilization, and seemed to be enjoying himself. Maybe he never heard of workout clothing?

1 comment:

brent said...

Check out for details about Mt biking in the East Bay. Nice Gala Ride the 2nd Sat of the month. (Bort Meadow meeting spot in Dec). Trail Work days, Youth Mountain Bike Adventures & Oakland Bike Patrol (if you're a Joaquin Miller/Dimond Park fan.) Plus social effects (mmmmmm...yummy beer.)