Coastal & RSF Ride-7 December 2019
by Rob Verfurth
Riders: Bob P, Oleg, John S, Cresap, Hodges, Voris & Rob
We are very fortunate to live in San Diego, a location with near perfect weather most of the year. The rains of late November provided some needed water to our arid climate but put a damper on some riding days. The weather window for a group ride was supposed to be open with early afternoon rains in the forecast. I was late getting ready and received a call from Dave Voris just as I was about to leave my house. Dave was in town for a family early Xmas event and he planned to join us when we hit Solana Beach about 9 am. Dave also texted me and Hodges. I left the house and was on my bike at 8:04, according to Strava. Hodges met up at the corner of Black Mountain and the bike path and when no one else showed up, he headed down the bike path for the coast. Unfortunately the published route had us going north on CDS and down Three Witches.
I got to the bike path a minute after Mike had passed my street, according to the Strava flybys. I was sure I was still ahead of the Descenders as they never leave the corner until a few minutes after 8 am. I waited on the bridge for five minutes and then rode to the top of Three Witches where I knew Bob P was waiting. When I got there I saw Bob, Oleg, John S and Cresap but no Hodges. We all assumed he was still behind us so we waited. Oleg & John had already found a pocket of rain on their ride over from the coast. The skies looked ominous, rain was coming for sure.
Just as we were starting to leave Jeff noticed he had a flat. We were now behind schedule to meet Voris but Jeff quickly got his tire changed. We flew down through Fairbanks Ranch and along the polo fields. Oleg & John S hammered us toward El Camino Real. Cresap & I could not hold pace so we fell off the back in the last half mile, regrouping at the light. We continued a fast pace on Via De La Valle toward the fairgrounds. Cresap noticed he had another flat and he fell off to try to get his tires fixed. We sped forward to meet Voris. Cresap limped home.
Just past the fairgrounds we spotted Dave and Mike as they rode toward us. Our group was now six riders as we headed up the coast. It was great to see Voris again. We caught up a bit riding at a pretty good clip towards Encinitas. The pace line pulls were fast and furious. Most of the discussion was how far north were we riding knowing that the rains were coming soon. Oleg, John S and Voris did a u-turn off PCH at Breakwater Road to head back south. Oleg & John hit some big rain before they got home as evidenced by Oleg’s Instagram story. Hodges, Bob and I rode up to Palomar Airport Road before heading inland.
We made our way towards RSF. I told the guys to leave me as we were already starting to get some rain; get home I know where I am. We climbed up El Camino Del Norte and I quickly fell off the back. I was sure they would follow my guidance. At Lago Lindo I stopped for a nature break and some nutrition. The rains were starting to get heavier and I was dreading the climb up Three Witches to get home. As I got back to corner both Hodges and Proulx were waiting for me. That was very nice of them but unnecessary. We would all now get more wet. I hammered down towards El Apajo and again asked them to just head towards home. I fell off the pace up Three Witches and expected to pootle in the puddles.
Bob had gone into SantaLuz but Hodges had waited for me at the top. The rains were now steady as we headed south on CDS toward the bike path. I was now soaked but almost home; Mike still had to get back to Sabre Springs area. Thanks to Mike and Bob for helping get me home. Fun ride and always good to get out with Voris. Oleg & John did lots of hard pulls during the ride, both are in good form. We all got home pretty wet and with very dirty bikes. Hodges even got out the brush to clean off the grit. Photos from the ride are below.