Okay, so here’s a google maps link of what I rode yesterday. In the morning I set out on the Creek Trail with my brother (good job Joe!) and our friend Rob and we rode to Los Gatos for breakfast. After the deliciousness of Los Gatos Cafe, Joe and Rob went back to their respective houses and I rode on to Saratoga to get on with the business of some serious riding. As proof of my desperate need for a GPS unit or even just a cycle computer, I painstakingly recreated the route in Gmap-Pedometer. The part inside Saratoga Gap in the google link is inaccurate, but from the trail map it seems to be about 13.5 miles. Thus, the total distance I traveled was about 7 miles more, for a total of over 50 miles!
But that’s not nearly as killer as the 2500 feet of climbing from my house to Four Corners, most of which of course was concentrated on the 7 miles between downtown Saratoga and the top.
It took me an hour and 2 minutes from the 7.00 mile marker to the parking lot. Want proof that I can’t pace myself? The first two miles flew by at 10-12mph, the first four miles were done at the 30-minute mark, and the last three miles took the rest of the time. You pass some strange stuff on that road when you’re putting at bike-speeds…Like mysterious gated-off and overgrown stone bridges leading to who-knows-what. I want to check that one out in the future since it was the only private drive without a no-tresspassing sign! This was on my 32-lb Hard Rock on knobby tires, mind you. I hope I’ll be able to do it faster on a road bike, but it’ll need to have some low gearing–the granny gear was the only thing that kept me going after a while, although I did try standing up and mashing a bigger gear towards the end.
I was pretty much used up by the time I got to the top, but still rode around doing a loop and a half of the trails stemming from Saratoga Gap. Then I tried to make my way out after running out of food and water.
So, and by the time I was trying to escape Saratoga Gap back onto Stevens Canyon (and return to civilization) I was bonked as all hell. There are some pretty sweet stunts and dirt jumps at the Stevens Canyon entrance to the open space preserve. Not that I was able or willing to take advantage of them! When I got to Cupertino I stopped at the closest liquor store and ate the hell out of a bag of almonds and chugged a Propel faster than anything in recent memory, then headed over to J&J for a BBQ Mix Plate. It tasted really good.
(I wish I had photos, the only photos I took were on this Japanese girl’s camera of her and her friend – I really threw them for a loop by offering in Japanese…I should have had them take one of me with the view across Saratoga Gap in the background, and given them my email address! Among other things…)