Tuesday, May 17, 2016

SF to Bodega Bay and Back Again Part 1

Last weekend we did a little test run for a series of camping trips we're planning to sponsor this year. Our friends at Best Coast Biking, a cycle hire startup based in the Bay Area, planned a route that took us across the Golden Gate and through the mountains, ending at a Hip Camp site a stones throw from the beach at Salmon Creek.

The group met up at the Warming Hut Cafe in the San Francisco Presidio.

Sarah and Daniel road the Surly LHT with touring racks and Soma New Xpress Terracotta 26" touring tires.

Ely rode his custom Winter 650b randonneur, with a matching set of Ruthworks bags that he made especially for the ride.

Ely used the Champs Elysees stainless racks, which are light enough for a sport tourist and mount to caliper brakes.

Sarah was our coordinator for the first day, making sure that all the logistics were squared away.

Daniel rode with us the first half of the day and traded off with Sarah so we got a chance to ride with everyone.

Norma rode her Soma Grand Randonneur, equipped with a Porteur Deluxe front rack and a spare set of Ely's custom Ruthworks panniers.

We headed out across the bridge and found a good rhythm as we entered Marin.

Crossing the bridge is always a challenge when it's windy, especially when you have a full load on the front.

We rode down to Horseshoe bay and climbed the short hill up and over to Sausalito.

We took a break in San Anselmo to eat some snacks and stretch out a bit before we started the real climbing.

After lunch Sarah Joined the ride and we increased our pace as we rode into the wind towards the coast.

We stopped in Valley Ford to get caffeinated while Daniel went ahead to our camp to start setting up for dinner.

Our campsite was situated up a hill looking out at the Pacific just north of Bodega Bay.

The land is also a ranch, but they've set up a number of tent cabins for guests to stay in.

This has got to be one of the most scenic spots anywhere on the Pacific Coast.

We got a fire started and watched the sun setting behind the clouds hanging out over the ocean.

One of the beverages we sampled was the Fort Point Westfalia Red Ale. Having never tried it before, I was pleasantly surprised to find it was quite good. It seemed an appropriate choice for a camping trip.

Once the sun finally dipped below the horizon we watched camp fires appear all around the hillside below our spot. Dinner included fresh pasta, veggies, grilled portobello mushrooms and sausage.

After a few more beers we retired to our respective tents and laid by the fire until we fell asleep. More from day 2 coming up soon.
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