Archive for November, 2012

San Clemente Single Tracking

November 22nd, 2012 by MTBBill

So after getting back from Japan on Monday, I got in some quality time with my youngest son Jake on Tuesday and Wednesday.   The boy has been growing like a weed and was in need of resizing/refreshing some of his hockey gear.   HockeyGiant.com has a large store in Anaheim so a shopping outing was added to the day’s to-do list.   The San Clemente Single Tracks (aka “The Weedpatch”) was right along the way so a pit stop in order.  There a couple of ways to get into the area and we parked off of Cristianitos Road.  This is real popular place for the local surfers hitting up Trestles to park so we looked like the odd men out without a surfboard in tow when we headed out. 

SCST-21NOV12-01-

We had not started out our morning planning on going for a ride so I had made the breakfast equivalent of a extra large all-meat pizza comprised of eggs, toasts, grits (the real all-natural stone ground stuff) and copious amounts of thick-cut applewood smoked bacon.  (Just for the record, all-meat pizza itself a breakfast food group!)   While breakfast had been mighty tasty we were still pretty stuffed when we started pedaling.  Jake had kicked my ass on the climbs during our last outing but that was not the case today.   My youngest buck soon learned that one of the skill sets that Dad honed while obtaining his official old guy qualifications was the ability climb hills with a belly full of bacon. 

SCST-21NOV12-04-

One nice thing about this area is that even when you are climbing there are plenty undulations here and there that break most of the climbs up.    Bacon burps on the climbs and smiles on the descents was the theme on this outing.  I always enjoy all the flowing swooping goodness out in this area.  The trails conditions were also good out today.  My favorite time out here is in the spring when everthing is green but there was nothing to complain about with it today. 

SCST-21NOV12-06-

We did about a 15 miles of trails out here before loading up the bikes and continuing on up to Anaheim to beat up on Dad’s wallet at the hockey store.  Another good day out a bike made even better by spending it with one of my boys.

Back in Japan – Yoko Dirt Time

November 11th, 2012 by MTBBill

Due to my last work project running long in Sasebo, my time back at home was just a week long before I headed back to Japan for some work in Yokosuka.   I flew back into Japan on a Saturday evening and decided to try and shake off some jet lag with ride on Sunday.

After grabbing a rental bike and setting it up with my pedals and some sizing tweaks I was through on the bike garb and on the road.   Today was not an exploration ride but a return to the Fugato-yama area which is one of my regular stomping grounds when I am in this neck of the woods.

It was a beautiful sunny day with a touch fall briskness in the air.  Despite only having about 6 hours of sleep after being up for 26 hours I felt really good on the street riding out to the trails.   I think this was a combination of being a bit fitter than I have been in the last six months coupled with still be ing a bit on Japan time with only having a week on US time.  Whatever the reason, I was digging having some energy in the tank and some iron in the legs while out in some nice nature.

The trails were in exceptionally good condition.   Obviously it had not rained heavy for maybe a week as some of the sections that are hellishly slippery when moist were fairly managable which was another bonus. 

It was a substantual act of being unselfish that I stopped to take this photo.  This is a long section of awesome flowing gravity feed goodness that just makes you smile.  Most times of the year the steep hillside is somewhat hidden by the vegitation.  With winter on its way the mixed forest flora is thinning out some to reveal more of its often “stealth” exposure.

Yoko-Reflective Sign

I did not have a huge route planned out here on this day as I had plans for the evening.   I had a handful of street miles to ride back to my hotel after popping out of the woods.  So there I was “just riding along” on the sidewalk along highway 16.  I managd to clip a sign like the one above while going about 20mph that jerked my handlebar pretty hard.  I was able to correct enough to keep from going full on body surfing on the concrete but the bike went way off line and Iended checking a concrete wall with my shoulder.    My head also smacked the wall, but my helmet completely earned its keep so the melon was no worse for wear.

For those who have been wondering, my test reveal that roadside Japanese concrete seems to have an average grit fact of somewhere between 30 and 45.   

After a very stingy shower, I hopped back on the bike and rode a did a few more miles of street riding over to friends Ken and Emi house.   We had nice evening of catching up things over tasty Japanese microbrews and a yummy homemade dinner.   It was a mighty fine opening day back in the land of the rising sun!