Mark and I at the start of Tour de Julian 2006
Sue has asked me to write a couple entries of our latest meanderings around the sunshine state. The first was trip was to the “mountains” near San Diego for some cycling, and the second was a trip to the Californian Central Coast for some R&R.
So my workmate, Mark, roped me into a weekend of road and mountain biking on Nov 11/12 in the small town of Julian (http://www.julianactive.com/tour%20de%20julian.htm & http://www.julianca.com), which is a scenic hour drive inland from San Diego. Off we went, wives and kids in tow. Unfortunately Sue & Tau had come down with a case of the winter cold/flu, yet were willing to go along with the flow – mostly for my sake.
Saturday began with a 55-mile road ride from Julian up to the top of Mt. Laguna and back. After a several miles of gentle rolling hills and short sharp descends we started the first climb – 1300 feet of climbing over 2-3 miles. No one warned us of this stupidity. At the first rest stop the wind was howling and the temperature had to have been the low 50s (10 degrees C). I looked for the nearest Starbucks. After a short break of PB & Jam sandwiches on the world famous Dudleys bread (http://www.dudleysbakery.com) we were off again for the ascent to Mt. Laguna – 1000 ft climb over 12 or so miles with that damn wind that had to have been 25-30mph. After finally reaching the top, PB & Jelly sandwiches replaced the lost calories but we were both looking for some warmth to help us regain our collective sense of humors. The nearby Mt. Laguna store was just what we were looking for. As we entered, we noticed the sign “Coffee $1.00”. Thank the good cycling god for small mercies. This weak infusion, a stale Twix & a swollen-from-the-altitude bag of Doritos put the smiles back on our dials and sent us merrily on our way back home. A couple photo ops, a cramping calf and a broken cleat later we rolled back into Julian cold and wind blown. Nothing a good hot bath in the brackish-looking well water and a hot Italian dinner at Romano’s (http://www.romanosjulian.com) couldn’t fix, hey? Sunday morning I bailed from the 19-mile mountain bike ride after a night of continual coughing by both wife and/or offspring. I was wiped. But Mark – being the trooper he is – took his tired self off for another couple hours of off-road punishment in the wind.