Friday, February 12, 2010
We had 24 bikes in our group as we departed Devil Mountain on Sunday. We jumped on Hwy 4 headed North to the Antioch bridge, and after a not so brief discussion with the toll taker, up Hwy 160 to Isleton. From Isleton we continued North on 160 for a few miles turning off the Hwy at Courtland and taking Netherlands Rd up to Jefferson and into West Sacramento for our comfort stop.
The weather was forecast to be mostly sunny, but our ride so far had all been under overcast skies. There were some wet spots on the road as it had rained early in the morning but aside from those few spots the roads were mostly dry.
After refueling the bikes we headed North again on Jefferson making a left on Capitol Ave and then North again onto Harbor and then Old River Rd. We followed the river up to I-5 where the road turns into County Rd 22 and paralleled I-5 to Winters and past on Hwy 16 which took us all the way to Capay and the Road Trip Bar & Grill. There was ample parking in the back and after we all got parked we stood in the parking lot for the Ride Rewards ticket drawing. Jim G. was the big winner of the McGuire's gift card. The sun had finally come out and we welcomed the warmth.
After the drawing we headed inside for some good food. The service was a little slow, but was very friendly. No one was in a big hurry so it wasn't a problem.
Once we'd all eaten we headed for home to catch the last of the Super Bowl game. We rode back on Hwy 16 to 505 to 80 to 680 and finally home.
Another great day with Mt Diablo HOG, riding and having lunch with friends.
We hope to see YOU on our next ride.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
We had 9 bikes in our group this morning when we pulled out of the parking lot at McGuire's. We rode up 680, took Hwy 4 to the Cummings Skyway, I-80 to Vallejo then Hwy 37 to 101 south in Novato where we made a comfort and food stop.
We jumped back on 101 south to Lucas Valley Rd and headed for the coast. We rode through Nicasio, around Nicasio Reservoir and over to Point Reyes Station where we turned south on Hwy 1. From there it was a few short miles to the Bolinas Lagoon Preserve.
But wait ... there's no sign for the Bolinas Lagoon Preserve! The group slows to give us a better opportunity to see the entrance to the preserve as we approach, but still no luck. There is NO sign. We find ourselves arriving in Stinson Beach, about 3 miles past where the preserve entrance is supposed to be. Some discussion ensues, followed by some fiddling with the GPS, a discussion with a lady walking her dogs, a lead change and it's off we go. We made our obligatory 'U' turn and headed north again in search of the elusive sign. We then turned down the road on the opposite side of the lagoon, which took us to Bolinas. We rode through the small town and eventually made our way to the beach on the west side of the Bolinas Lagoon. Not the preserve mind you, but it was the Bolinas Lagoon.
We found a place to park near the beach and ate our lunches there. The temperature was in the 60s, as it had been for the entire ride which was under overcast skies and through some light fog. We chatted with several of the locals as they strolled past going to and from the beach. While eating lunch we discovered that there is no 'park', but a private ranch that opens its gates to the public for the egret nesting season. We did see that sign, twice. Oh well, it was a great ride.
Then it was time to head for home, but being overcast and cool we decided that we should stop in Olima for some coffee first. After our coffee we headed east on Sir Frances Drake Blvd with the group splintering off as we went, taking other routes home.
Another fantastic day spent with friends doing what we love, riding and eating.
Saturday, February 28, 2009
We began arriving at the Devil Mtn shop at around 9:00 this morning for our ride to Sunol. The forecast was for cloudy skies with rain showers late in the evening and that turned out to be right on target. As usual, the folks at Devil Mtn were waiting for us with some coffee and all sorts of breakfast goodies. Aren't they great!?!
By the time we pulled out of the parking lot we had 16 bikes in the group. We rode through Pittsburg and Antioch emerging on Deer Valley Rd to the south. We turned onto Marsh Creek Rd and followed that to Vasco Rd and into Livermore. We zig-zagged through Livermore and joined Hwy 84 on the south side of town, following that all the way to 680 at the Sunol Grade. Instead of turning toward Sunol we turned east, following Calaveras Rd through the hills and along the west side of the reservoir. For some reason there were a lot of bicycles on Calaveras road today. And, as usual, they kept us on our toes as we maneuvered around them. In a couple of places they created a major hazard as we tried to dodge them. At one point in particular a car going the opposite direction stopped to make sure all the motorcycles in the group were able to safely get by on the narrow road. The bicycles overtaking the stopped car decided to pass, moving into our lane to do so. Of course this caused part of our group to stop to avoid colliding with the bicycles. There should be a law!!! Fortunately we were able to get by the bicycles without incident and continue on. We descended the hill into Milpitas and merged onto 680 heading north. We rode up 680 to the Calaveras Rd exit and turned west this time to Sunol and Bosco's Bones & Brew.
After parking we made our way inside and had a nice lunch. A few folks visited the bar area and watched Bosco pee in a cup. Yeah, really. You should check it out next time you're there.
Most of the group departed Sunol together after lunch and rode up Foothill to Bernal where we merged onto 680 north and home.
It was a great day for a ride with temps in the 60s and no precipitation, even though it was cloudy all day. A fantastic day spent riding with friends. Hopefully the rain will hold off tomorrow so we can do it again.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
We started out at the Devil Mountain shop at 9:00 this morning. This was an early departure compared to most of the rides so far this year. We heard several folks say that they almost missed the ride because they thought it was leaving at 10:00am, so we hope you didn't miss it due to the 9:00am departure.
There were 26 bikes as we headed east on Leland. We turned onto Century Blvd and made our way through town on 10th St and Wilbur Ave, merging onto Hwy 160 at the Antioch bridge. We crossed the bridge and turned right onto Sherman Island Rd and followed that all the way back to Hwy 160. Then it was a short distance up 160 to Brannan Island Rd to Twitchell Island Rd and then back onto Brannan Island Rd. We rode the levees along the San Joaquin and the Mokelumne Rivers and made our first planned stop in the boat launch parking lot next to Hwy 12. After a short break we were back on the road, merging onto Hwy 12 and then angling off to the right on Terminous Rd and on into Isleton from the back side. We turned onto Hwy 160 and then onto Tyler Rd about a half mile north of town. We followed Tyler Rd to Race Track Rd and made a brief stop to pay our respects to J.R. before continuing on or way. From there we rode up River Rd through Walnut Grove to Vorden Rd, Herzog Rd, Lambert Rd and back to Hwy 160. We turned north on 160 followed by a left turn onto Randall Island Rd and back on 160 again, this time heading south. We followed 160 for approximately a mile and a half before crossing the river and turning north on River Rd. We continued north to County Rd 143 and followed County Rd till we rejoined River Rd. and took that up to Clarksburg where we made our second scheduled stop.
Once back on the road we made our way over to Netherlands Ave and followed that for a few miles before turning onto Waukeena Rd. Then it was on to Courtland Rd, Ryer Ave, and Ryer Rd over to Howard Landing. At Howard Landing we boarded the ferry to cross Steamboat Slough and then made our way via Hwy 220 back to Hwy 160 and home.
The weather for most of the trip was nice, but as we neared the end of the ride it turned cold with the temp dropping into the 50's and the wind was picking up. As we rode home people began waving off and heading for home trying to beat the rain. The clouds looked dark and ominous, but I don't think anyone actually got wet. I had a passenger frantically insisting that we pull off in Antioch so we peeled off a couple of miles before we reached the destination, the Chinese Restaurant/Buffet on Somersville Rd. Hope everyone had a good lunch there.
At the pre-ride brief Bruce mentioned counting left and right turns. I don't know if anyone actually did, and I don't know how many of each there are. What I can tell you is that there are 55 (plus or minus a couple) turns with ample opportunities to turn in either direction. Definitely a good ride and another great day spent with friends.
See you on the next ride ...
Saturday, February 7, 2009
Even though the skies looked ominous this morning it turned out to be a very nice day. People began collecting at McGuire's at around 9:00 AM and there was a steady trickle of arrivals till we departed at just after 10:00 AM.
We staged two groups with 26 bikes total under the BART tracks as usual, and after sorting out who was going to ride in which group, we were on our way. We rode down Main St to Geary, to Pleasant Hill, to Grayson and then onto Reliez Valley. We went into single file formation as we made our way along Reliez Valley to Alhambra Valley and then to Pinole Valley. Though it didn't rain on us all day, the 'valley' roads were still a little wet from the rains late last night. We proceeded cautiously as we made our way over to I80 and headed south. We were only on I80 for a couple of miles before we followed the Fitzgerald Exit onto Richmond Pkwy and made our way through San Pablo and Richmond to 580. The left turn light from Castro St to the on ramp for 580 west is really quick, so all of group two didn't make the light and they weren't able to catch up before we reached the toll plaza. We pulled over just before the toll plaza to wait for them so they wouldn't have to pay their tolls twice. Aren't we considerate ;?) Once they caught up we proceeded across the bridge, took Sir Frances Drake Blvd to Hwy 101 south and exited at Madera Blvd in Corte Madera for our stop at the Safeway store. This was a 'bring your own lunch' ride, but some couldn't bring lunch so we factored in the Safeway stop so they could get some vittles. We expected to find group one there when we pulled in, but we didn't see a one of them. After getting food for those that needed it, we were on our way again.
We merged onto 101 south again for a few miles before exiting in Marin City onto Bridgehead Rd. As we rode through Tiberon we saw group one at the Safeway store there (that explains why we didn't see them in Corte Madera). They appeared to be lining up to get back on the road, but group two was now in the lead. We continued through Sausalito on Bridgehead and had a perfect view of Richardson San Francisco Bays on our left. As we exited Sausalito to the south we noted a flurry of police activity and some tow trucks. We didn't see where the accident had been, but there were a couple of crumpled cars left as evidence of a 'not so good' day for someone.
We then made a right turn onto Bunker Rd and paid our obligatory 5 min. homage to the signal light at the tunnel. Then it was our turn and through the tunnel we went. I dearly love the sound of a group of Harleys as we ride through a tunnel. Before we knew it we emerged back into the sunlight and were making a left turn onto McCullough Rd and headed up the hill overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge. As we made our right turn onto Conzelman Rd we were treated to a beautiful view of the San Francisco Bay. We could see the GG Bridge, SF, TI, Angel Island, and the Bay Bridge all at the same time. Oh, and there was a blimp that just seemed to be floating over the bay. As I said, a beautiful view. We rode past the Point Bonita Lighthouse and up into the park.
We pulled over in the park for ten minutes or so hoping group one would catch up, but we got impatient and made our way down the hill to the Nike Missile Site. Group one finally arrived at the Nike Site while we were parking. Seems they'd had some bike problems that had delayed them a few minutes, but all was well now.
We brought our food over to the picnic tables and ate before touring the facilities. This is an impressive tour and if you haven't taken it yet you should put it on your list of places to visit.
All too soon it was time to go home. Some had left on their own, but most of the remaining riders returned as one group the way we had come.
A fantastic day for a ride and good conversation with friends. Let's do it again tomorrow!
Sunday, January 18, 2009
What a great day for a ride. It started off with frost on the rooftops, but warmed up nicely as the day progressed. We began meeting at the Devil Mtn. shop at around 7:30 this morning. As always, Daisy & Bruce were there with goodies. And today we were treated to some home made breakfast burritos to warm us up for our ride. Thanks guys, you're the best!
By the time we pulled out of the parking lot there were 37 bikes in two groups. We merged onto Hwy 4 and veered north on 160 over the Antioch bridge. We followed 160 up through Freeport and all the way to Sacramento, where it turns into Freeport Blvd. We made our scheduled mid-point stop at the Starbucks on the corner of Freeport Blvd and Pocket Rd, and after some coffee & such we continued on our way. As we rode north on Freeport Blvd our group got broken up several times by the signal lights. Seems the front half of our group couldn't catch a red light while the back half couldn't catch one green. It all worked out though and the group got back together as we made our left turn onto 'L' street. From there it was just a couple of blocks down to the convention center and a couple of trips around the block to find parking. From here the group split up, most going in to see the show and some choosing to pass it up for more riding.
The small group I was with stopped for breakfast at the pancake house, then took a leisurely ride via I5 to Twin Cities and Hwy 160 back to Antioch. We saw lots of other motorcycles on the road today. Some heading to/from the bike show and others just out enjoying the unseasonable January weather. I hope everyone got a chance to get out and ride this weekend, even if you couldn't join us today.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
What a great day for a ride. The temp was in the high 40s to low 50s under mostly overcast skies, though we did see some sunshine and even some fog along our route.
We had 30 bikes show up for this first ever New Year Kick Off ride. We split up into two smaller groups to make it easier to navigate through town and then we headed south on 680. The traffic was relatively light on 680 and we pretty much had our choice of lanes as we headed for Danville and the Sycamore Valley Rd exit. We turned east on Sycamore Valley and followed that to Highland Rd where we turned east. We turned onto Collier Canyon Rd and followed that south for a couple of miles before turning left onto Carneal Rd and then right again onto Manning Rd as we maneuvered our way along the base of the hills. Somewhere along here we found some sunlight, but it didn't last long. We zig-zaged a couple of more times before we emerged on Vasco Rd in Livermore. We turned north on Vasco Rd and headed up and over the hill past the windmills. It wasn't long before we found ourselves enveloped in fog, but the visibility wasn't too bad. We rode through the fog for a few miles and then descended the hill and broke out on the Byron side to see overcast skies again. The overcast stayed with us for the remainder of our ride and it was accompanied by a drop in temperature to around 40 degrees. We turned left onto Camino Diablo Rd, north onto Deer Valley Rd and then onto Lone Tree Way and into the parking lot at Sylvia's Country Kitchen.
As we pulled into the parking lot we noted that the parking lot was nearly full and the place was packed. We scattered to find parking and then made our way inside. We had called ahead but they still weren't ready for us. They did have a large party finishing up so we would have to wait for a few minutes. Nearly half the group decided not to wait and took off to find nourishment elsewhere. A few of the riders decided to eat at the counter and a couple of minutes later the remainder of the group was seated. We ate, we chatted, and then it was time to head for home.
This was another great day spent riding, eating, and chatting with friends. And on a first time event to boot. How could we possibly go wrong ...