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Any South Bay Area (CA) riders here?

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Any South Bay Area (CA) riders here?

Old 07-07-05, 04:48 PM
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sjshaw
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Any South Bay Area (CA) riders here?

I'm going today to pick up my first road bike, a Specialized Allez Sport. Any people on the board who ride in the South Bay area, such as Sunnyvale, Mountain View, etc.? As a newbie, I don't want to ride with the crazy traffic yet, so I'm hoping some of you can suggest more serene roads on which to learn. I know the Los Gatos Trail is a good choice. Any other suggestions are welcome!

Also, any suggestions re: what to buy along with my bike are welcome. I'm getting a helmet, jersey and shorts for sure.
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Old 07-07-05, 04:53 PM
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There are many of us from the South Bay. Ruirui, Veneer, SteveE, me. Terry also rides down here often.

I like to ride Fothill Expy. It is not serene, but there is a wide shoulder that we ride on. Canada is another road that I like to ride.

Enjoy the new bike.
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Old 07-07-05, 05:03 PM
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If you want to avoid traffic, you could go into Los Altos hills. the climbs are not bad, and there is very little traffic. Just cross foot Hill somewhere (like Main or Edith) and get lost.. Getting lost is the best way to get in lots of miles..
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Old 07-07-05, 05:09 PM
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I live in Fremont and there a few routes here with little traffic. One popular ride is the Calaveras loop:
http://bayinsider.ktvu.com/recreatio...veras_log.html
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Old 07-07-05, 05:14 PM
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and of course, if you download KLIMB (it is free software) you will be able to plan your own rides... it provides you with distances, climb in feet, water spots, and route profile.. a MUST if you ride in the bay area..

www.klimb.org
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Old 07-07-05, 05:16 PM
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http://www.westernwheelers.org/ is a good recreational bike club in the Sunnyvale-Los Altos-Palo Alto area.
http://www.actc.org/ is a good club for Los Gatos-San Jose-Morgan Hill.
These clubs have fast rides and slow rides and welcome guests/beginners (on the slow rides, at least). They will show you the best local routes, as well as teach you riding and maintenance skills.
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Old 07-07-05, 05:18 PM
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This info is excellent. Thanks!
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Old 07-07-05, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by sorebutt
and of course, if you download KLIMB (it is free software) you will be able to plan your own rides... it provides you with distances, climb in feet, water spots, and route profile.. a MUST if you ride in the bay area..

www.klimb.org
KLIMB is a great tool, but it is really geared for intermediate and above riders. Coverage of beginner (i.e., flat-to-rolling) routes is very limited. If you're climbing up to Skyline and down to the coast and back, then the program is very useful.
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Old 07-07-05, 08:08 PM
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If you don't already know, we should make good use of the San Francisco Bay Trail (240/400 miles are done)
It is a flat trail along the bay. You can ride across 84. Although the multi-use trail is flat, it is WINDY,
which can be good for training

Another one is the last section of the Sawyer Camp trail. Moderate climb to the reservoir. Do it
several rounds in a row can be exciting

Try google to find some information.
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Old 07-07-05, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by sjshaw
I'm going today to pick up my first road bike, a Specialized Allez Sport. Any people on the board who ride in the South Bay area, such as Sunnyvale, Mountain View, etc.? As a newbie, I don't want to ride with the crazy traffic yet, so I'm hoping some of you can suggest more serene roads on which to learn. I know the Los Gatos Trail is a good choice. Any other suggestions are welcome!

Also, any suggestions re: what to buy along with my bike are welcome. I'm getting a helmet, jersey and shorts for sure.
I am in SJ and frequently cruise up Foothill to do some of the climbs up that way (Old La Honda, 84, Page Mill, etc.).

The Los Gatos Trail is not really a good choice, unless you go at off-peak hours or in the off season . . . it's very crowded with peds and casual cyclists, you spend a lot of time dodging and saying "on your left" to clueless fools rather than riding. Stick to the roads instead. Foothill is great for that . . . true, there's a lot of traffic, but it has that massive shoulder with no parking allowed and as such is a great cruise route (stop lights are good for resting!). Try going south all the way down to Stevens Creek Reservoir (or even further, if you're up for tackling some hills).

"The Loop" might be a good choice, too (see http://chainreaction.com/theloop.htm), very gentle, good scenery, not *too* much traffic. Actually check out the other rides on the Chain Reaction site, too.

Have fun . . . see you out there!
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Old 07-07-05, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by 'nother
Try going south all the way down to Stevens Creek Reservoir (or even further, if you're up for tackling some hills).
Redwood Gulch. Yum yum yum.
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Old 07-07-05, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by johnny99
Redwood Gulch. Yum yum yum.
Yeah! That's what I'm talkin' about! Just rode down that today, which, I have to say, is not a whole lot better than going up

But, speaking to the point . . . past the Reservoir, you can continue on Stevens Canyon to the end (at the gate), or go left just past the park, and do Mount Eden (and possibly continue on past that to Pierce Road, up to the Mountain Winery). They're not terribly difficult nor long climbs, but for a beginner they may cause a bit of pain (I know that was the case for me when I was starting out!). A longer climb option is Montebello Road (on the right, just past the quarry entrance): 2000' in 5.2 miles.
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Old 07-07-05, 11:16 PM
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All of those climbs hurt...I hate the tiny raise up to the reservoir!!!!

You darn pixies!!!!
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Old 07-07-05, 11:29 PM
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Originally Posted by ZappCatt
All of those climbs hurt...I hate the tiny raise up to the reservoir!!!!

You darn pixies!!!!
who you callin' pixies??? at 210lb I ain't no pixie...
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Old 07-07-05, 11:31 PM
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I gotta go attack some of those climbs. I also gotta restock on tubes first. Don't wanna get caught with a flat, and no spare tube in the middle of nowhere....
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Old 07-08-05, 01:06 AM
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Here's my stash of peninsula routes:

http://www.paloaltobicycles.com/rides.html

http://www.chainreaction.com/theloop.htm

http://www.westernwheelers.org/main/...Climbs.html#H9

http://www.rahul.net/kenton/fun/bike/

http://theblaines.net/bicycling/rides_catalog.htm
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Old 07-08-05, 08:49 AM
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Another list of routes that is really good.

http://www.velogirls.com/routes.html
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Old 07-08-05, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by sjshaw
Also, any suggestions re: what to buy along with my bike are welcome. I'm getting a helmet, jersey and shorts for sure.
Since no one else addressed this, you should get at least 1 extra tube (I prefer 2), a pump, H2O bottles, saddle bag, gloves recomended but not necessary, a cyclocomputer (again just a recomendation, not a necessity). Yeah this is a day late but you can always go back to the shop

If this is your first bike, be sure you know how to change a tube. A lot of new riders do not know how to do that or at least do it easily and trying to learn out on a ride can be a biyatch.

Enjoy your new ride

Slainte

p.s.You should also get a patch kit to use when you get back after a ride if you had a flat if you want to save a bit on tubes. You could also use it out on a ride but it is much faster to just swap a tube then repair it at home.
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Old 07-08-05, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by sorebutt
who you callin' pixies??? at 210lb I ain't no pixie...
Have to agree . . . I'm south of 210, but I'm certainly no pixie either. Climbs are tough for me, but they're kind of unavoidable around these parts if you want to get away from the sprawl. So I have learned to enjoy, and occasionally even savor them


Originally Posted by aadhils
I gotta go attack some of those climbs. I also gotta restock on tubes first. Don't wanna get caught with a flat, and no spare tube in the middle of nowhere....
Actually, many of these rides are quite busy with cyclists, particularly in the summer months after work/school. If you do manage to get in a jam, you're likely to find help pretty easily. It just seems like you're in the middle of nowhere
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Old 07-08-05, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by 'nother
Have to agree . . . I'm south of 210, but I'm certainly no pixie either. Climbs are tough for me, but they're kind of unavoidable around these parts if you want to get away from the sprawl. So I have learned to enjoy, and occasionally even savor them
I agree that most of the best rides in the Bay Area are pretty hilly. You just need to train a little and learn to enjoy them. If necessary, get some low gears. Local bike shops probably sell half or more of their road bikes with triple cranksets. With sufficiently low gears, even a heavyweight should be able to make it up Old La Honda Road. If you do that once a week, you won't be a heavyweight for long.

If you really really don't like long climbs, there are some nice rolling rides out along the ocean, especially between Half Moon Bay and Pescadero (Hwy 1, Stage, Verde, Purisima, etc.). There are also some nice flat to rolling rides out in Marin (Headlands, Paradise Loop). The bay side of the peninsula is not very exciting. Same goes for the east bay flatlands.
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Old 07-08-05, 05:32 PM
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Originally Posted by johnny99
I agree that most of the best rides in the Bay Area are pretty hilly. You just need to train a little and learn to enjoy them. If necessary, get some low gears. Local bike shops probably sell half or more of their road bikes with triple cranksets. With sufficiently low gears, even a heavyweight should be able to make it up Old La Honda Road. If you do that once a week, you won't be a heavyweight for long.

If you really really don't like long climbs, there are some nice rolling rides out along the ocean, especially between Half Moon Bay and Pescadero (Hwy 1, Stage, Verde, Purisima, etc.). There are also some nice flat to rolling rides out in Marin (Headlands, Paradise Loop). The bay side of the peninsula is not very exciting. Same goes for the east bay flatlands.
Yup! I got a triple with a 29t cassette in the back. I need those gears for parts of climbs like page mill, and Montebello.. But I know I would not have been able to climb the long ones without a triple.. being 53 also doesn't help..
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