We’ve been promising a friend that we’d take him on a day tour of the trails and backroads around our area, but conflicting schedules and bad weather have been conspiring against us for months. Everything finally fell into place today and we spent the afternoon exploring our extended backyard while working lunch and a coffee break into the mix. It was an awesome time that could only be experienced among good friends on bikes. If you’ve never done a local day tour with friends, you might give it a try sometime. It’s a great way to visit while learning more about the area in which you live; all without getting in a car!
We planned to take a short ride across town today, but it was so beautiful that we ended up finding one excuse after another to keep going and going. Eventually the morning slipped away; 20 miles and three stops later we ended up at home. I heard it reached 74F, though I didn’t bother to confirm. We’re certainly enjoying this bit of spring-like weather.
For those who are still struggling with ice and snow, we hope things improve soon! Feel free to send us photos of your beautiful summer weather when we’re complaining about 110F in July… :-)
I’ve been fighting a virus this week, off the bike and house-ridden for the past few days. Today was the first day I felt like getting back on the bike, and fortunately, we had a beautifully mild day with highs around 60F and no wind. We took the opportunity to ride across town to see a friend’s paintings in an art show that opened today at a local gallery.
Wow, it felt good to be back on the bike, out in the fresh air and enjoying the natural world. My body feels better, I feel refreshed, and most importantly, I feel much more clear-headed. It really is amazing what a nice, long, slow bike ride can do to speed along recovery and brighten your mood. This time of year when we’re all so sun starved and short on fresh air, a bike ride on a sunny day can really work wonders. The fact that all of this is an added benefit to a simple, economical, and environmentally-friendly mode of transportation is quite remarkable!
As a follow-up to my fog rant earlier today, I thought I’d post a poll to see what type of weather is your least favorite. Does the heat burn you up? Do you cuss the wind? Does the snow leave you with cold feet? Let us know what kind of weather gets your goat (feel free to choose more than one).
We spent most of the day on the road, but before making the long trek home we had to stop by to see the beautifully restored Point Cabrillo Lighthouse. Point Cabrillo is arguably one of the most beautiful spots on the North Coast, and the Point Cabrillo Lighthouse is without a doubt one of the most beautiful old buildings up here.
We rode our bikes out early and saw only one other person hiking the bluffs, though we shared the area with a dozen deer and a pod of gray whales passing by not far off shore. It was a fitting end to a wonderful trip.
Here’s some information about Point Cabrillo from the Point Cabrillo Light Station website:
Although Point Cabrillo was surveyed by the U. S. Lighthouse Service in 1873, construction of the Light Station didn’t begin until after the 1906 earthquake. The demand for lumber to rebuild San Francisco meant that maritime commerce on the north coast was at an all time high and a Lighthouse was critical to the safety of the ships and their valuable cargo. Construction of the Light Station began in 1908, and the lens was illuminated for the first time on June 10,1909, under head keeper Wilhelm Baumgartner.
The Point Cabrillo Light Station California State Historic Park includes the historic 1909 Light Station (30.5 acres), and approximately 270 acres of undeveloped coastal bluffs and prairie.
The property was purchased and preserved from development in 1992 by the California State Coastal Conservancy and managed by a non-profit affiliate, the North Coast Interpretive Association. In 2002, the property transferred to the California Department of Parks and Recreation. Management of the Preserve’s programs and restoration activities was assumed by a newly formed non-profit organization: The Point Cabrillo Lightkeepers Association (PCLK).
The California Department of Parks and Recreation provided the Coastal Conservancy with four million dollars to be used for the restoration of the historic Light Station. During the five years, 2002 to 2006, the Coastal Conservancy granted that money to the PCLK who under the supervision of State Parks, used the funds to restore two of the three light keepers’ houses and the three historic out buildings. Restoration of the West Light keepers’ house exterior is complete. Restoration of the West House interior, along with the historic fencing and gardens will be accomplished as additional funds become available.
[For those who were wondering, we'll be back to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow. —Alan]
We’re up on the North Coast, taking a few days to celebrate an important anniversary while recharging our batteries before starting the new year. This is one of our favorite areas, and for us, there’s no prettier place on the planet.
Unfortunately, the only way to get up here is by driving an automobile or taking a very long, difficult, and time consuming bike ride. A 225-mile bike ride was out of the question for a weekend getaway, so we threw the Bromptons into the back of our little economy car and drove up. Now that we’re here, we’re using the Bromptons to get around and enjoy the area.
These little bikes are absolutely ideal for this kind of travel. They take up very little room in a car (or a train, which is our preference), they ride like a dream, they store well in a cabin or hotel room, and they can come with us into restaurants and other businesses. When packed in a pair of Brompton “B-Bags”, they take up no more room than a suitcase (see photo).
These bikes allow us to use transit or an automobile to get to a destination, then free us up from the confines of a car once we’ve arrived. They make it possible to explore an area in a way that is just not possible on foot or by car. They totally immerse us in the local environment while providing much more reach than walking.
I think it’s obvious by now that we’re all about minimizing automobile use. Truth be told, we don’t like the amount of driving involved in a trip like this, but once in a while the alternatives just don’t work out. When we do choose to take the car, the Bromptons certainly take a good portion of the sting out of it.
A few snaps from today’s errand run. It felt nice to get out of the house and breathe some fresh air after a weekend full of indoor holiday festivities. Did you get in a ride today?