Stan’s Obligatory Blog


La Tuna Canyon and the Valley

Filed under: — stan @ 3:57 pm

Today’s bike ride was through La Tuna Canyon and then across the San Fernando Valley with a snack stop in Toluca Lake.

We met at the Elks Lodge in Pasadena. The Rose Parade grandstands were still up, and they were apparently filming something there. There were some police cars for a fictitious police department in the parking lot.

The ride up through Montrose was nice. At the top of La Tuna Canyon we caught up with Gene and Charley. Then we all headed down the other side. At the bottom, we rode across Sun Valley to get to Coldwater Canyon Road, which we took south all the way across the Valley. The road was pretty wretched, like many Los Angeles city streets. It was also windy, since we’re having a Santa Ana right now. But that also meant that the air was very clear, and we could see the mountains very well. Along the way, we passed the Great Wall of Los Angeles.

In Toluca Lake, we stopped at Priscilla’s for bagels and such. Then we headed home by the direct route across Glendale and Eagle Rock. Then back up the Colorado hill into Pasadena.

It was a nice ride.

51 miles.


2008 Bike Report

Filed under: — stan @ 10:01 pm

Since I posted my 2008 Car Report, here’s the comparable report for my bike. In 2008, I rode 6,013 miles total. Despite all the upheaval in my personal life this past year, I was still able to ride my bike to work nearly every day. Commuting accounted for about 2,000 miles. The remainder was my weekend rides for fun.

This is comfortably more than the 5,703 miles I put on my car, so the balance of the universe is still correct.


Mt Washington on a Sunday morning

Filed under: — stan @ 7:57 pm

Today’s bike ride was to Mt. Washington in Los Angeles. We started out from Victory Park and headed up into Altadena. From there, we rode over into La Cañada and then down Verdugo Blvd all the way to Glassell Park. Then we headed up Mt. Washington. They repaved the road last year, and it’s really pretty nice now. It’s a pleasant climb with some nice switchbacks.

Coming down the other side into Highland Park, we headed north, back to South Pasadena. When we crossed the Gold Line railroad tracks, I got a flat. Fortunately, it was a slow leak, so I was able to make it to the snack stop at Kaldi’s before I had to fix it.

Finally, we rode across San Marino and back up Sierra Madre Blvd to the park. It was a nice ride.

37 miles.


First bike ride of 2009

Filed under: — stan @ 8:39 pm

I’ve long been of the opinion that going riding on January 1st is a good way to start the year. So today, Susan and I joined some of the other people from the bike club for a ride to start out the year. The route was one that Gene made up, and it didn’t really go anywhere in particular, but it was fun anyway. It was a bit chilly at first, but then it warmed up nicely.

In honor of our adventure last night, Susan wore her martini socks.

Getting out was a bit of a challenge, since we had to cross the Rose Parade route. And when we got back, the parade had just ended, and the whole area around my house was a zoo. That was where we saw some of the horses walking up the street by my house. We stopped and visited with some of the neighbors before heading inside to get cleaned up and have lunch before going to see the Rose Parade floats.

43 miles.


Turnbull Canyon and a ‘longcut’

Filed under: — stan @ 9:57 pm

Today’s ride was the “Turnbull Canyon plus Temple” route. My camera is still traveling with Susan, so I have no pictures from today. If you want pictures, have a look at the last time we did this ride.

When we got to the temple, we skipped stopping. Gene wanted to experiment with a different route back to Whitter, so we headed up Hacienda Blvd to the top of the hill, where we turned off and rode on a bunch of little winding roads through the hills there to get back to Colima Rd in Whittier. It was quite a bit longer than the regular route, but it was fun. So we told the others that we’d ‘taken the longcut’ to get there.

In Whittier, we stopped for snacks before heading home. It was a very pleasant ride.

56 miles.


Mary’s Market

Filed under: — stan @ 3:31 pm

Today I went for a bike ride with Gene from the Sunday morning group. We did the “Mary’s Market” route that he made up recently. This is a meandering route that goes all over, but nowhere in particular until the end. Because we had no time pressure today, we added a few miles by making a loop through Santa Fe Dam and Azusa. This added about 10 miles to the ride. Then we headed up the canyons above Sierra Madre to visit Mary’s Market. I’d never been there before, and it was kind of a remarkable place. We were just a little bit above the suburbs of Los Angeles, yet it felt like we were far up in the mountains. The climb up there was steep at times, but I managed to make it without having to use my lowest gear. It was a fun ride. But there are no pictures, since my small camera that I usually take on rides is off in the wilds of upstate New York with Susan. I gave it to her so she could take pictures when she went there to visit her mom. So no pictures for the bike rides this weekend.

50 miles


San Dimas and points south

Filed under: — stan @ 3:59 pm

Today’s club ride was Gene’s “San Dimas South” route. The last time we did this one was on a gloomy day in April. Today wasn’t gloomy, but it was cold by SoCal standards.

We took a picture at the start, since Gene and I both had decorated our bikes for the holidays.

Along the way, we saw some amusing decorations on houses, including the big tree decorated with big ornaments. And at then end, we saw a small harem of peahens in Arcadia.

I skipped the snack stop, since I had to get home a bit early to pick up Lucinda, so it was a relatively quick ride. But it was nice.

48 miles.


Off with his head!

Filed under: — stan @ 8:15 am

More news from today’s L.A. Times. As one might guess, this is a topic that’s near and dear to me:

Christopher Thompson to be tried in confrontations with cyclists


Sunday’s ride

Filed under: — stan @ 10:38 pm

Sunday’s bike ride was another ‘ride to nowhere in particular’. It was chilly and never really warmed up. The only things of note along the way were one abandoned couch in Irwindale, and that we stopped at a new Cuban bakery in Monrovia. It was pretty good.

40 miles.


Mulholland Drive

Filed under: — stan @ 9:37 pm

Today’s ride was the “Mulholland Meander“. We did this ride last year, and I like it just about any time.

At the start, they were putting up the grandstands for the Rose Parade. But I saw one pile of boards that was labeled, “GRANDSTANS”. Heh.

The ride from Pasadena to Griffith Park was pretty straightforward. And then when we assembled the rest of the group, we set out from there. Somehow, I managed to convince most of them to do my detour up Lake Hollywood Drive. This is to avoid riding on the stretch of Cahuenga next to the freeway. I hate that bit of road, and I think it’s worth riding up and over a pretty big hill to avoid. No word on whether or not the others agreed with me when we were done.

On the way up Mulholland, I saw a half-buried warning sign. All I could see was, “Please Don’t”.

We rode out to nearly where the pavement ends on Mulholland, and then dropped down into the Valley. We then rode straight back across the Valley to Toluca Lake. Along the way, I saw the car with a license plate that said “USA 0002″. I thought this was a bit odd. You never hear people chanting, “We’re Number 2!”

After a stop for a snack at Priscilla’s, we left the planned route and headed down the L.A. River bike path and then home by way of Eagle Rock and Highland Park. I saw a nice abandoned couch in Highland Park. Then we rode across South Pasadena and then back up Sierra Madre Blvd to home.

It was a nice ride.

65 miles.

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