We woke to find very wet bikes, which gave us the chance to do a little cleaning. My windshield, headlight, and the top of my gas tank (basically what I can see) are cleaner than they were. When we park, Rick usually finds a different part of the parking lot, because he doesn’t want anyone thinking that his pristine bike associates with a filthy pig like mine. 🙂
But the “wet” was more mist than fog, so we could see where we were in a monochrome sort of way.
The temperature stayed in the low 50’s so I appreciated my electric grips and heated jacket. Rick appreciated his windbreaker equally as much, I’m guessing.
This coast is near my family and I lived in ’78-’79, when we spent a year living in Santa Rosa while I was “oil-field trash.” My wife had an MG-B and we had fun driving some of the roads Rick and I rode today.
It was fun riding through Bodega Bay and remembering the day my flight instructor put me under “the plastic cloud” (a device which restricts the student’s vision to the plane’s instruments and is more frequently called “the hood”) and took me out to practice instrument flight and recovery from unusual attitudes. After we’d done that, he gave me vectors and kept having me descend lower and lower. When we got down to 100′ AGL, I knew we had to be over the ocean. Then he took me down to 50′ AGL and removed the hood. We were just above Bodega Bay, with the town and the cliffs on our left, the headland between the bay and the Pacific and nothing but ocean in front of us. It was one of my best flying moments.
This is a picture of a church in Bodega Bay that may have been the one featured in Alfred Hitchcock’s film, “The Birds.”
We rode along Tomales Bay, which looked like it would have been a great place to sail “Taradiddle,” the wooden 17′ cat-ketch we owned while we lived in California but which never got wet, the whole time we were there. I confess that I never really considered sailing in Tomales Bay after someone caught a 15′ Great White shark there not long after we moved to Santa Rosa. But there were lots of boats sailing in the south end of the bay today.
After a brief stop in Stinson Beach, we rode up the southwest flank of Mt. Tamalpais and were treated to stunning views of the vastness of the Pacific Ocean. You could see three or four ships heading west and one coming into port.
This was taken just as we started out of Stinson Beach. I wish I’d gotten better pictures of the ocean, but we would have needed to stop … or I would have taken a plunge into the icy depths.
We came out onto Highway 101 at Sausalito, and were quickly onto the Golden Gate which has made a big improvement in processing traffic — they no longer make you stop and pay a toll. Instead their cameras record your license plate and I’ll have a bill waiting for me when I get home (unless I can con Joanne into paying it for me).
You might be able to guess where this was taken. 🙂
Getting through San Francisco wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. We rode through the Presidio and then down Highway 1, right past Calvary United Methodist Church, one of the places where we and a bunch of University of Wyoming kids, along with the Wesley Foundation Director, Bill Bruce and his wife Jean, did a Mission Trip and painted the pre-school back in 1982.
The traffic got us in San Jose and then again about 20 miles south. We were reduced to a crawl or less. We got to see what “lane-sharing” looks like, and it was scary. A couple of times, when we were moving at close to 60mph, a guy on a crotch rocket blasted past us and then through the moving traffic at 75-80mph. A couple of other times, we were barely moving and a guy on a crotch rocket blasted by us and through the traffic at 50-60mph. The only person who seemed to be doing lane-sharing the way I thought it “ought” to be done was a man on a Goldwing, moving about 10mph faster than traffic which was moving at 15-25mph. I was slightly tempted to follow him. But not enough to do it.
Stats for Day 4 of the Four Corners Tour and Day 24 of the Epic Ride:
Day, 296 miles; Trip, 9,452 miles; Year, 15,305 miles; Total, 67,393 miles.
You should have taken Hwy 17 or Hwy 9 through the Santa Cruz mountains. Beautiful scenery and curving roads. Continue to enjoy your trip.