It is Gabe's fault. He came up with the idea of making a camping trip of the return from Cloverdale after riding the day before SFR's San Francisco to Cloverdale 200k. As usual I tried to pack light, the one person tent hanging from the handlebar, and the Carradice Trax on the seatpost. Total weigh not much more than 13-15 lbs (including sleeping pad/bag) Since we were doing the 200k brevet of the SFR Double Brevet Weekend we could send small drop bags in a car instead of having to carry our stuff from San Francisco to Cloverdale. No shame in sending stuff ahead to the actual camping trip start.
The 5 of us shared the room Juliayn had reserved at the Best Western in Cloverdale. I chose to sleep on the floor rather than share one of the queen size beds. I had a good night sleep.
Next morning after riding the San Francisco to Cloverdale 200k we got up with the rest of the riders who were doing the Cloverdale to San Francisco 200k and had the continental breakfast offered by the motel, not bad. At the breakfast room, the Tour de France was on the TV, to my surprise a Colombian rider was doing quite well, Nairo Quintana. When we were done eating I grabbed an extra pastry for later on the day, this would affect my trip on a big way. More later.
Ok we are ready to go right? No! we are going for breakfast at the Owl Cafe! What? we are gonna be leaving supper late and it is gonna be a scorcher today! We'll pay later for it. We walked a few blocks to the cafe and each one of us order some pretty substantial breakfast. While we were having the second feeding of the early day, SFR riders went by, it was nice seeing a long line of geeky looking distance riders moving.
We left the Best Western at 9:40am, It was getting warmer. Going up on Hwy 128 there was a significant amount of traffic considering it was a Sunday, not excessive but more than I am used to. When we got to the top of Hwy 128, where we were regrouping, I noticed I had forgotten to start the GPS, oh well I'll do it now.
From the top of the hill down to the Andersen Valley we spread out. I rode near John who was carrying his whole house on the panniers. It was a wonderful clear day...
Bali was a very nice place to visit and ride our bikes. We had our share of small problems but it was all due to our carelessness. Would I go back to do the same tour around most of the perimeter of the Island? Sure but there are too many other places I want to go to first.
We rode 405.86 miles (653.17 kms) mostly around the perimeter of the island, spent about US $100/day for the two of us including hotel food and the obligatory beer/drinks. Stayed in decent hotels (US $40-130) whenever possible not ever knowing where the next hotel was going to be, just the way we like it. I think it is important to point that Bali is one of those places where you can find hotels/resorts that charge many hundreds and thousands of dollars per night so if you are into that kind of spending you'll not be disappointed, it pays to compare a few places before you decide where to stay that night, just walk into the reception and inquire for their best deal. BTW most hotels include breakfast in the price quoted.
It has been more than a year since we went there and the more time goes by the more I miss it. IMO Bali is a wonderful place to ride a bike and travel.
I ussualy don't like to re-post stuff somebody has written/posted somewhere else; that is, a short summary of somebody else's blog, don't see the usefulness to that plus I try to keep this site with as much "original" content as possible. However here is a piece I can't pass as it touches my roots.
Back in September 2006 Monica and I did an overnight bicycle tour to Point Reyes. On the way back to San Francisco we meet Randy and Nancy, who were cycling from Alaska to Patagonia. Being Colombian I asked them if they were planing on riding through the country and they said said they had considered it but it seem it was to dangerous and probably would fly from Panama to Ecuador like most people do to avoid what in the US is known as "one of the most dangerous countries in the world".
I told them there was to much misinformation about Colombia and that they probably would be safe. However like with any foreign land just use common sense. I know I would not like to be caught in some San Francisco (my adopted hometown that I love) neighborhoods at night, same principle different country.
I remember receiving email from them early this year (2008) letting Monica and I know they had decided to ride in Colombia, I gave them the contact of a friend in Bogota but it seems they did not go to Bogota (IMO, a huge cosmopolitan metropolis in the true sense of the word.) Just today I came across one of their old emails and decided to visit their website and find out how the Colombia segment went. They have plenty to write about their experience in Colombia. For those whith short attention span here is Nancy's summary of their experience in Colombia. Their writings describe very close the country I know and how people behave. Believe me interesting writing not just of my home country but of all other places they've been.
Greg, Jim G and I started riding from the Golden Gate Bridge a little latter than planed, somewhere past 8:15 am. Our route, proposed by Greg, used roads that I am familiar with but rarely ride, quite nice for cycling, with very low car traffic and great scenery.. This is the way we took to Bodega Dunes.
(First posted August-23-2006 at 11:26 pm)
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