Getting There - Aneel's Travelogue

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To Cloverdale Cloverdale, California, Friday, 25 September 2009 10:14pm

It was foggy in Petaluma, which helped us sleep in pretty late. It wasn't until after 9:30 that we finally hit the road.

Our first stop was just North of the 101 in Cotati, for a pretty good breakfast at the Redwood Cafe. We went up the road to a bike shop, since I'd noticed that my rear tire was looking low and the bike was riding squishily. Using the shop's floor pump (with pressure gauge), I discovered that the tire had lost something like 35 psi since I filled it yesterday morning. I finished pumping it up, and then filled the front tire. I must have twisted the nozzle a little too much while taking it off, because the valve stem tore and the tire immediately went flat. So I bought a new tube and changed the tire.

We biked on up to Santa Rosa and had a snack in a bistro on the central square. It was a pleasant break. My rear tire was feeling squishy again, so we stopped at another bike shop on the way out of Santa Rosa to get another tube. I replaced the tube in short order, but I'm afraid that I may have bent the derailler hanger by setting the back of the bike on the ground with fully loaded panniers.

We stayed North of the freeway for a while, heading up Chalk Hill Road to CA 128, and then stopping at the Jimtown Store. I (re-)discovered that I have a high tolerance for heat and distances, but a low tolerance for going slowly up hills. I'm pretty happy whenever I'm on my biggest chainring, but by the time I'm shifted down to my smallest, I'm not pleased.

From Jimtown, we headed in to Geyserville, and then crossed to the west side of 101 again to bike on the cooler, but hillier side of the valley, and finally crossed back to the east side to get to the place we're staying.

Originally, we'd planned to bike in to Cloverdale for dinner, but after biking up the very steep hill that the house is on, we decided to order pizza for delivery instead.

Evening here is beautiful. The very steep hill means we get a great sunset view across the valley. We got to see a few dusk bats making their rounds. I need to get a pet bat to eat the mosquitos who find me so delicious. I wonder if they can be trained to hang from handlebars. The valley is dark enough that the stars are stunning as well. I amused myself for an hour by identifying all of the bright stars with an iPhone star chart.

56.79 mi in 4:28 rolling Map