Friday, January 20, 2017

Jan 17 Santa Monica fire road

Pretty much my favorite ride in LA. The standby. The steady. The one and done. 
You weave thru Santa Monica and Rustic Canyon, that magic patch of streets below the Palisades that no one seems to know about still with its old ranch sites and community tennis courts and gazillion dollar cottage and craftsmen homes riffing off old designs into the stratosphere of domestic comfort. 
And a nice loud stream which runs more often than most in So Cal. Climb up out of that and somehow you get right to Sunset. Where if you want you do a quick 8th of a mile zig zag and at your pedals is suddenly 40,000 acres of bike riding. 
Boom. Like that. One minute you're crossing in front of a bar and an italian restaurant, next minute your climbing past Steven Spielbergs pad and then poof you disappear into miles of mountain nothinness. 
It's about two hours my favorite ride. Straight up from sea level to the fire lanes of Dirt Mulholland, I dont know...six mile climb?? Couple pitches are the steepest things I've ever consistently ridden up, views to both sides of a massive ravine and walking park. 
On and on, granny gear hell, sun on you face if you climb before noon at the worst parts. It can be brutal. Or it can be more often, magic. The sun setting as you reach the ranger station and WATER! at the top. There's the Pacific one way. There's the valley and the San Gabriel mts in the other. I've gotten to the top and the winds been blowing so hard the power lines moan like a rigged ship. 
Strange place. The worst and the best. Pain and joy. The mountains and the over built valley below. 
Then you take a couple rights and plunge for even more miles than the climb all the way back down to Sunset where it scrapes thru Santa Monica's northern canyons. 
Ain't a car that can keep up with you once you start the descent. A blast....and this is a bobcat I saw on the way up in a yard not a mile from Sunset Blvd. 
Gotta love the southland.


  1. Ha! Amazing picture! Sounds like a interesting time.

  2. I'm new to reading your blogs. Trying to catch up on your previous writings. There's something refreshing about your words. If you love to write, I hope you publish something one day I can pick up at a local Chapters (Canadian bookstore). I have an eReader but I find myself buying books for the feel of the pages between my fingers and the scent of the ink within the print.

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