81 miles in 9.17 hours
I got up early, and saw that Tim, Tim, and Melissa had gotten in overnight. But, it being before 6am, I knew they would not be awake by the time I rolled out. I got everything together and was on the road by 6:45. I rode through Santa Cruz, and stopped and grabbed breakfast.
As soon as I got out of town it started to rain. Not just drizzle, but rain pretty hard. I put my raincoat on, my IPod in my ears (very rare), and my head down and just followed the white line. I couldn’t even look up, because the rain hurt my eyes when I did because of the headwind I was going into as well.
I grinded and eventually it cleared up a little bit a few hours into the day.
However, when it did the wind really started. To top it all off, this was literally the only day in the trip where I had somewhere to be at a certain time. I had to be in San Francisco by 4 or 4:30 or I wouldn’t be allowed on the BART until 6 or 6:30. As the day wore on, it became obvious that I was not going to make it.
Not only that, but finally as the wind was beginning to die down, the hills started.
And these were big ones. And I began to feel pretty ill as well. This made for very slow times, but I made it to Half Moon Bay. I stopped, soaking wet, smelling awful I am sure, in a little cafe and had lunch. When they closed I saw that I wasn’t going to make it by 4:30, so I just decided to make the most of my time and went to Starbucks for a few hours. After that I felt much better and was ready to tackle the last 20-30 miles into the city.
Going past Half Moon Bay is was very pretty, but eventually I got to some huge mountains where there was a ton of construction going on and absolutely no shoulders. And it was rush hour. I would later learn that this section of the road is called the Devil’s Slide, and devilish it was. I was going in 200 foot increments because it was so steep and harrowing, and stopping anytime there was even 3 inches right of the white line to hide in and allow cars to pass. I did this for an hour, and eventually made it to the top, and began the decent into Pacifica. This was fantastic, and almost worth the harrowing ride up the hill. Almost. (Sorry – no pictures – was trying not to die).
From Pacifica I took back roads through into San Francisco, and had to climb what had to be the steepest, if not the longest hill of the trip. It was called Skyline Drive, and it was ridiculous. I ended up just pushing my bike up the steepest section at under 3 miles per hour, which is slow even by pushing standards.
Once I got over that last hill, I rode down to the Colma BART station and took the BART to the Civic Center Station. I rode up the last hill and met my friend with 11.1 seconds left in the NBA Finals Game Four. I got there in time to see Fisher make the three to send it to overtime and then see the Lakers win the game in that overtime.
I showered up and we went out and got dinner at a great Thai place and went to a few neighborhood bars. Thanks for the hospitality Pete!
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(First day with no video… sorry gang).