Friday, March 25, 2016

mountain lions, berms and slugs....oh my!

my son Liam, got accepted to UC Santa Cruz.  during spring break we hit the road to tour the university.

Liam really likes it there!  I'm sure the miles of sweet and gnarly single track right there on the campus has absolutely nothing to do with it!

While we were there Liam got to ride some primo bike trails with friends.  He certainly had a blast.   We used to fit 3 bikes inside our subaru while traveling and now that our bikes are bigger due to larger wheel size it doesn't work anymore.  I left mine at home as i didn't want hubby to tie mine on the roof with his!  that man can tie ice to a space heater!  He's a master at secure knots!  but i declined his offer anyway.
We rode Sandhills in Scotts Valley with a friend of a friend, Eve.  She took us on an awesome tour and lent me a killer carbon Ibis bike!  It was so fun, the trails were tight and twisty!  thanks Eve!

After our campus tour on Wednesday the boys hit the trails! I was bike-less and sad so i decided to hike instead.  i had a lovely 5.2 mile hike on the Emma McCrary flow trail!   Flowers, redwoods and sweet berms filled the trail!  i was missing my bike but got over it and just slowed down to enjoy the beauty. 

 Missing my bike on these berms for sure!  smooth and fast!

sorry for the overload of photos. can't help myself.  

we are creatures of habit, our family.  we tend to repeat things we like.  so, as usual we sustained ourselves on vegetarian burritos and tostadas at Taqueria los Pericos on Water St.

this trip to Santa Cruz we were fortunate to stay with hubby's friend and coworker Bill.  What a treat that was!  out in the country away from the busyness, bustle and traffic of SC.   i regret not taking more photos.  orchards, succulents, flowers and cacti galore!  i woke to this view every morning! peace! bliss!
on our last day i was fortunate to have rented a demo bike from the Santa Cruz Bicycle Factory!  what a deal!  a top of the line bike for only $20/4 hours.  
i got to ride a carbon 1x11 5010.  yes, feeling a bit guilty.  i cheated on Lavinnia.  no more bike monogamy for this chik!  and i must say i'm in love.  called her stella blue.  she climbed like a dream, the sound of her hub was music to my ears, 650b rocks and light as a feather!  sweet ride for sure.  i forgot about the dropper seat post as i don't have one on Lavinnia. so i didnt even use it. hahahah!  

liam was off riding trails with his buddies.  roy and i took off from the factory and headed to wilder ranch.  a short ride on a bike path from the factory.  (since we don't have a bike rack)
see that creature at the top of the map?  yes, we saw one and yes, its a mountain lion.  in broad daylight!  holy crap, it was awesome!
we rode up to "twin gates"  which was quite the climb and i was so happy to be sporting a carbon bike and not my solid but super heavy aluminum 29er.(no offense Lavinnia!)
                                           Stella Blue
                                                            flannel everyday!
                                                    yes, that's the ocean!
                              my new love, Stella Blue!
sadly, i had to return stella. gotta figure out how to get my hands on $8600.  that's a hell of a lot hats to knit!  sigh!  next time i demo gonna figure out how to get my bike to the better trails.  nothing against wilder, but just not my style.  

liam had a second ride planned later in the day so roy and i decided to check out the little town of felton.  found a thrift store!
and scored! raspberry skirt is linen folks! damn, no matter what i do this photo is upside down!!!!!
while waiting for liam to finish his last ride i really really really wanted to have a beer at this joint!  monty's!

but, we realized we had a long drive home including the frustration of bay area traffic.....we made the better decision of coffee at the white raven
i will return for a beer at monty's!  i did get knitting in too!

great trip!  check out the subaru when i looked at it this morning for unpacking!  HA! another successful family adventure!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

the lone rider

i'm a lone rider.  not a lonely rider but a rider who prefers riding alone.  i tend to be a loner in most aspects of my life-a hermitess. i enjoy my own company.  that being said, the fact that i am a slow rider does aid to my riding loner style. a few health issues which i am trying to resolve require me to stop now and then to breathe or stretch and i just hate having people wait for me.  

another reason for my solo adventures is the solitude i enter into on my bike.  its just me, Lavinia and the wilderness.

i am not a roadie, i prefer the sweet single track in the forest or mountains.  i work as a 7th grade aide.  24- 7th graders 5 days a week can be mentally exhausting, leaving me little time for my own thoughts.  the feeling i get when i jump on my bike and go into the forest fills every part of my being with peace and a sense of calm.   it's a moment when i can forget about everything and just be.  i find time to think things thru-  i listen to birds, feel the trees breathe, sense the eyes of mountain lions on my back and dodge suicidal squirrels that cross my path.  but when i am on the gnarlier trails i have to focus- "be here now"  as they say!  no room for other thoughts! which is a different kind of peace. these gnarlier trails take my breath away, get my adrenaline pumping and i feel so alive and full of exhilaration-like i'm flying or bouncing around like a crazed wombat!  it's  a stellar high!

lone riding does have its drawbacks.  crashing when you are alone can be scary.  Or when you come upon something like this in the trail- well, it is nice to have help.
with all this much needed rain we have been getting lately my riding time has been sparse.  i did manage to sneak a ride in today in between storms!  woot!  i got to see how full the dam was and it was amazing.  haven't seen it like this in years.
the great thing about the trails at bullards is they are not muddy in the rain, they are rideable.  i can feel good about not wrecking up the trails!  i saw my first dogwood just beginning to bloom today! 
can you see it there in top center of the above photo?  the flowers are just opening!  the greens are so brilliant on the trails they seem surreal.
the photo doesn't do it justice.  when i look at the lake i often wonder what Garden Valley looked like before they flooded it.  must have been gorgeous with its steep wooded hillsides with the north fork of the yuba river wildly flowing thru the valley. 
during the summer months these trails are not as serene.  the blare of motor boats speeding with blasting classic rock fills the air.  but for  now, these precious months before the campgrounds open is bliss at its finest.  solitary fishing boats dot the lakescape.
looking forward to my next ride!  looks like a clearing in the rain coming up next week!  so glad i chose to ride today  instead of cleaning the house. 

Sunday, February 1, 2015

super bowl sunday 2015

well, not really.  this is more realistic to what i am doing:

im dancing around the house to "new order" one of my favorite bands, getting pumped for my mountain bike ride.   my ride started out great.  newly groomed trails done by BONC(bicyclists of Nevada County) ready for me to shred.  

 the rookery!

love riding under this tree!  things were going great, i was cruising, and then before i could react there was a small branch sticking out in the trail-only about an inch and a half in diameter but connected to a bigger tree.  the next thing i know i'm laying on my back, cursing on a pile of logs and branches.  usually my crashes are slow motion.  not this one!  i layed there awhile checking in with all my body parts before i tried getting up.  yes, i was riding alone.  no one to help.  here's some photos of my view point.

managed to get my phone out of my pocket-to take pics!

looking up at the trail!

this was the branch!  i broke it and several others off the mother log so no one else ended up on the debris pile!  

pain relief at home.....what super bowl? i'm just stoked that i got my best time down rebel ridge trail!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

fun and then some

the fiber trash girls pegged the fun meter once again at our annual fiber retreat.  there was a lot of chair dancing to this song, knitting, spinning, indigo dyeing and team "hell raiser" got in a bike ride or two! 

birdsong's cabin is always so inviting

 my basket of goodies

we had fun with indigo dye.  i dyed 2 large skeins of yarn that i had previously dyed with lichen and a silk shirt.  before:


birdsong happily knitting after playing with indigo.

 there was a lot of fiber trash gang signing as well!  the indigo girls are gonna be so jealous when they see this pic!

chrissy sue, barbara sue and i got some exhilarating  mtb riding in!  

made it to the top of sandusky!  note:more gangster signs!

some photos need no explantation.  just enjoy! i mean, i could try and explain. but you just sorta had to be there.  ya know what i'm sayin?

 despite the mysterious ass-biting bug plague we had a hella good time.  and the mexican love cake was fabulous!