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Sunday, May 29, 2011

San Diego Noir

Just read about it in this morning's paper in the Books section (not much of a section in comparison to a couple of years ago but... you make do with whatever you make do with...).  I haven't even read one story from it yet.  I just now downloaded the book into my Kindle.

This is a book of mystery stories all taking place in San Diego.  The editor is a co-owner of Mysterious Galaxy bookstore.  In her intro she makes references to Raymond Chandler, Joseph Wambaugh (both of whom lived in San Diego; Chandler is buried at Mount Hope - as I understand it), and several spectacular murder cases marring the history of this wonderful city.

Yeah, nothing to do with bicycle camping.  But it does concern San Diego.  Since I'm off the bike until July 2 reading the book gives me something to do.

Can't recommend the book until I read it... but I do recommend the premise.  Anything San Diego-oriented is A-OKay in my book!!  (Pun intended).

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Some Panoramic Shots from My Most Recent Ride

As you know I've been prohibited from riding a bicycle for 6 weeks from May 21.  Thus, I am ineligible to get back in the saddle until July 2nd.  Bummer.

Since the only "riding" I can do right now is down memory lane, I thought I'd post my full sized panoramic shots from this last trip.  Just click on them to enjoy the detail.

East of Ramona
Santa Ysabel
Pastoral country
Wm Heise Campground

Viewpoint south of Julian

Entering the Sunrise Highway

Preparing to hang-glide


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Fun at Kumayaay Viewpoint (Sat, May 21, 2011)

Preparing to hang glide and walk off a perfectly good cliff!!
 During my agonizing series of climbs up the Sunrise Highway (at one point I actually got off and walked the bicycle... oy vey!!) I eventually reached the Kumayaay Viewpoint.  By the way, some maps refer to it as the Kwimee Viewpoint.  For our purposes we'll call it "the KV."

Relieved to be off the bike and able to rest for a while, I surveyed the desert below.  Unbelieveably beautiful.  Just over a bump in the trail were three guys preparing hang gliders.  I wandered over and became the sort of annoying pest I hate coming around me.

"Are you guys going to do what I think you're going to do?" I snidely inquired.

Rethinking the Sunrise Highway

Entering the Sunrise Highway from the 79, not too far from Cuyamaca Lake.
In an earlier post I said something like: "A ride from north to south along the Sunrise Highway with a stop at the Kwimee Viewpoint would be a blast!"  Or words to that effect.

Well, what I said is true.  But there are caveats.

Wm Heise Campground (Fri, May 20, 2011)

Wm Heise Campground just southwest of Julian.  Great campground!!  I loved it here... but I didn't love the ride getting here.
Riding up a mountain on a bicycle while hauling 50 pounds of camping gear.  That's the sentence.  No subject, only a gerund, two adverbial prepositional phrases, and a dependent clause.  Because the exercise is purely psychological... it has no meaning outside of the exerciser.  And thus the sentence describing this insane behaviour must forever remain incomplete.

Return to Dos Picos; The Possum from Hell (Thurs, May 19 2011)

You guys know the drill.  I loaded the bicycle the night before.  Thursday I rode to work.  I got the books caught up.  By 2:00 pm I was off to go camping.

Dos Picos is still an absolutely lovely spot.  Not a lot of folks this time... but Memorial Day weekend is nearly here.
I followed the same route as last time (Kearny Villa Road, Miramar Rd. to Pomerado, Scripps Poway Parkway, north on the 67, right on Mossey Grade Dr.).  Set up camp; quick shower.  Sat back and enjoyed the approaching evening.

I made one "newbie" mistake that every boy scout knows not to do: I brought food - In 'n Out Burger, in fact - in a paper sack.  Over the course of that afternoon the smell of those greasy fries and that greasy burger penetrated the sack and left an aroma in my front saddle bag.  Ah well, I wolfed it down shortly after showering.  Food's gone.  What's the harm?

Picking Up the Thread...

Today my wife drove me in the Jeep out to Campo, where we picked up my bike and gear from the CalFire Station.  In addition to being told by the doctors not to ride a bicycle for 6 weeks, I'm also not supposed to drive a car (danger of blackouts).  Since I want to keep both my medical insurance and driver's license, I'm going to adhere to both conditions.  That doesn't, however, mean I have to like it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Knocked Unconscious in Campo

If you've been following this blog you know I left Thursday (May 19) for a 3 day bicycle camping trip.

Thursday, Dos Picos near Ramona.  Wonderful spot.  Enjoyable... except for my sleep being disturbed by the possum from hell.  But more on that in a later post.

Friday, Wm Heise near Julian.  Happening campground; loved it!!

Saturday, not such a great day.  Problem #1: the decision to travel 62 miles from Julian to Potrero while pulling 50 pounds of camping gear.  Problem #2: the decision to include a ride over the Sunrise Highway as part of that 62 mile trip.

The Sunrise Highway involves a lot of intense climbing.  I wasn't ready for that... especially while lugging all that gear.  When I finally got to low ground and proceeded along Buckman Springs Rd. I was exhausted.  I wasn't as careful as I should be and I hit sand and crashed.  And knocked myself unconscious.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Extortion, Pure and Simple

Palomar, San Pasqual parks axed by state

Originally published May 13, 2011 at 1:08 p.m., updated May 13, 2011 at 5:19 p.m.
Palomar Mountain is a favorite spot in San Diego for people to get away from the urban area. Activities including hiking, camping, birdwatching and fishing. The park is on the state's list of sites to be closed by July 2012.
Palomar Mountain is a favorite spot in San Diego for people to get away from the urban area. Activities including hiking, camping, birdwatching and fishing. The park is on the state's list of sites to be closed by July 2012.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Back in the Saddle; How They Do Things in Italy

My wife returned from Italy Wednesday and Thursday (yesterday) I was back in the bicycle saddle and commuting to work once more.

Man, a week and a half off the bike.  It doesn't take long before you feel pretty out of shape.  Of course it doesn't help that when I'm living by myself I subsist on sandwiches and other hi-calorie/hi-carbohydrate crap.  Note to self: improve diet!!

My wife brought home a ton of pictures of Italy.  Right off the bat I noticed the following

Bicycle rentals in Milan.  You rent at one station and drop it off at the station nearest your destination.  Excellent idea!  Could you imagine how nice such a system would be for San Diego?

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Grocery Getter

As I had mentioned in my last post I'm basically out of commission for a week and a half while my wife is out of town.  I've got cat-sitting duty as well as the usual routine of going to work, preparing my own meals, keeping the house somewhat clean and organized, etc.

The grocery getter... a Raleigh Mojave 4 mountain bike "converted" for performing chores in the city.
Thus my recent bicycling has been confined to trips to the store.  Local rides that don't involve much mileage but do require some carrying capacity.  Appropriately I've outfitted the Raleigh mountain bike (a Mojave 4) to serve as my grocery getter.