California Coast & Wine Bike Tour

Below are excerpts from my daily account of a 6 day bike tour that took us through the highly bike-able Sonoma county – Redwoods, vineyards, wineries and along the infamous Highway 1.

We rode 245 miles with 16,753 feet of ascent – including King Ridge road (made famous by Levi Leipheimer’s Gran Fondo).

Took over 1100 photographs – some of which are posted.

Click on the title link to read the full post and view pictures.


California Coast and Wine Country Tour – Stage 1“The scenery changed to farms and vineyards, it was lovely. The road smoothed out somewhat which helped after that monster lunch. It was wonderful to be on a bike riding along backroads, surrounded by nature with nothing on the horizon for the week but biking, eating, drinking and having fun. We were up for the task.”


Healdsburg Loop – Stage 2Today’s ride would take us through the Russian River Valley and Alexander Valley through vineyard after vineyard and winery after winery. We were anxious to ride on what was a beautiful morning. Beautiful mile after beautiful mile. Vineyard after vineyard. Gorgeous weather to match the gorgeous views.”


Healdsburg-Occidental:Stage 3“We had another beautiful day! Amazing luck with the weather this trip. We originally were signed up to do this trip in June but had to cancel and reschedule for August. We had to cancel then too so we rescheduled for October. I’m glad we did because the weather and the fall color couldn’t be beat.”


Occidental-Sea Ranch: Stage 4:  As it turned out it was a fantastic day of bike riding. An epic day! The most climbing (4300 ft. approximately of ascent) and the toughest climbs I’ve ever done. It was a day in the saddle I’ll look back on with fond memories and a sense of pride because of the beauty of King Ridge and the ways it pushed and tested me. It hurt like hell at times but I loved every minute of it.”


Sea Ranch–Bodega Bay: Stage 5:  “At times Highway 1 took us through deep and cool woods, other times high on cliffs overlooking the ocean. And still other times almost level with the sea, but then only to go back up (and up) to where the only thing between you on your bike and the ocean below was a few hundred feet of air. No guardrails, just you and the cars and trucks, the white fog line and the dirt shoulder. I didn’t really think about any of that until later. My mind and heart and soul were immersed in everything that surrounded me.”


Bodega Bay-Petaluma Stage 6The route followed rolling terrain with a couple of “memorable” climbs – memorable in that they hurt. The most “memorable” climb was right before Tomales and Mike was up at the top taking pictures and offering encouragement. Hope I looked better than I felt. How I felt improved significantly when I came to Tomales bakery and got even better after some kind of delicious breadstick thing which I inhaled. The bakery was crowded with cyclists from a local club and our group was there as well.”

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For the Love of Bikes Blog by Susan Lash (2009 - 2014) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
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