2002 Tierra Bella 65k Ride Report
(Saturday, April 13 in Gilroy, CA.)
I woke up much earlier than I wanted to at 6:45, & headed down to Gilroy.
It took about an hour to get to Gavilan
College, and once there I geared up, stretched, and went and checked in.
Denise & Ralph arrived shortly after me, and after checking in, we rolled
out at about 9.
I wasn't sure I should do the 100k route, since my tendon injury from the Solvang Double hadn't yet fully healed, but it
looked like it'd be easy enough to shortcut the route if desired. I opted to
head out on the 100k route, since it went to Gilroy Hot Springs, which I'd
heard was pretty. The official 60k route didn't look all that interesting.
The route went out to Monterey Rd, then out on Frazier Lake Rd. to Hwy 152 and
Holsclaw Rd. This was nice agricultural country, with onions & garlic
growing everywhere. The I Care Classic went
on some of this route. Its pretty and peaceful, with very light traffic, and
... um ... diverse olfactory sensations ;-). The day was warming up, so I
ditched my vest, and we continued east-ward. After a few more turns, and a
stop to remove our unnecessary arm & leg warmers, we were right at the
base of the eastern hills. We missed a turn and went a mile or two out of the
way before we realized our (OK, my, since I was navigating!) error and turned
We got back on course and started the climb up Leavesly Rd., a beautiful,
verdant road that wound its way up the hillside along a lovely little creek.
The hills were super-green (which they wouldn't be come June), and there was
virtually no traffic - lovely! My front tire flatted about halfway through
the climb - argh! After I fixed that, we continued on our way, taking a very
easy pace up the climb (which wasn't all that difficult, really). A few miles
later, we arrived at the rest stop at Gilroy Hot Springs Rd. & Canada Rd.
They were out of gatorade here, unfortunately, but I topped off my bottles,
munched on some tasty nutbread (I'm glad I did, as they were out of food when
I left!), and we prepared to head back out. When I put my bike back on the
road, it felt somewhat bouncy - arrrgh, a flat in the back tire this time!
This was not my day for keeping air in my tires! I went back up to the rest
stop so I could use their floor pump, patched my tube (I only had one spare
tube this day as opposed to the two I usually carry), filled up both tires,
and then we headed out. It was getting pretty warm by now
(low 80s I'd guess).
Canada Rd. gently rose through even greener pastures and was also largely
un-trafficed. We enjoyed the great views and kept the pace mellow for the
next 5 miles until we got to the summit of Canada Rd. The descent on Canada
Rd. was a fun one - 4 miles long, and pretty fast (mostly 30-40mph)! Once we
got to the bottom, Denise & I decided we didn't want to push it and risk
injury (though my tendons were feeling fine, why push it?), but Ralph wanted
to do the whole 100k route, so we parted ways there. I was happy just to have
gotten in a ride on such a lovely day, and to have experienced the Gilroy Hot
Springs loop while it was so green.
Denise & I decided it would be simplest if we just returned on the same
surface roads that we headed out on and so we did, going back to Gavilan
College on Hwy 152, Frazier Lake, Bloomfield, Monterey, and Luchessa.
We arrived back at our cars at around 11:40, changed, and went over to chow.
They had excellent lasagna, salad, and garlic bread. Ralph arrived a couple
hours later, having completed the 100k route. We hung out for a bit, then I
This was a fun ride, if rather short. Just as well, since Denise & I
weren't feeling anywhere near top-form! It would have been quite warm had we
done a longer route - my car said it was 88° outside when I left - warmer
than usual for this area this time of year!
||3 - they shouldn't have run out of food & gatorade at the first
rest stop, but otherwise no complaints.