Mid-Week Rides: Mt Hamilton
Pictures start here.
Wednesday, Jan 27 2016
I had slept well, and eager to get going. But, at five in the morning?! I don’t think so. Cuppa Joe, catching up with the news and eMail was the best I could do.
Today Chris Weld suggested we meet at 9:00 am in Lvermore, at Mike’s restaurant on first street.
Hit the road by 8:00 am to pick up John Carlson. He rides a 1983 R100RS “last edition” - or so BMW had dubbed it until a couple years later they decided on manufacturing the bike again! So much for “Last edition”.
John purchased the bike new in 1982 and has since cshlapt (nice word) 43,000 miles on it - in other words the bike is basically new and kept accordingly. Hmmm… Shame on you!! Ride that puppy John, ride it!
Highway 880 going north, holy smokes! It was a parking lot. But, heading north on this highway at this time of the day is always so. Split-lane. It never makes me happy. I do it, but let us face it, it is dangerous, and I don’t care what you think… It is!
880 and then 680 cut over to 84 to Livermore. Beautiful, clear skies, sunny, 60-some degrees warm. Surely a motorcycling day.
John and I arrived to Mike’s restaurant in Livermore to be greeted… “Your late!” Echoed by the others sitting at the table. Yaips! Never knew I was holding the proceedings, and I wasn’t - they were just being their regular-belligerent-selves, attitude reserved for the loved ones… Thank you guys! I feel so much better.
Marco, Dick, Paul, Dana and Chris. - I introduced John as “the guy I am going to South America next year”. Instantly that made him a celebrity… Well, in my mind anyway, after all how many ride their bikes all the way to the end of the world. You I got my gist.
Mike’s restaurant ain’t all that great. It is a facility ran by some Asian, with the best of attitudes, I suspect the reason for our patronage. Ok, I like the place, and yes I would return again.
Food came, coffee we drank. Enough. Time to get going.
I’d like to point out everyone was on some kind of BMW, save Dana who rides a Honda Shadow, convinced, someone has to bring some class to this rubble of riders.
First Street to Mines Road south. After a few miles, the Captn’ called to a stop. Hardly enough time to have the coffee find gravity, so that could not be it. Sure thing. The leader is having difficulty with his new helmet. It seems, either, his head has swollen or, the the helmet has shrunk. I leave the reader to speculate as needed…
Back on the road. A few miles brought us to The Junction. Yep, the natural stop is “OUT OF BUSINESS”. Who knows what might have happened. Closed. [Editors note: I don’t believe “The Junction” is out of business. It is reported to be open Friday through Sunday – the days they might actually have some customers.]
Onward, brings us to a bridge where stopped. Few said anything, yet several made a contribution to ease the drought. Successfully and satisfactorily by the relaxation of their faces could be observed.
Chris, told us, “guys, my prior wife is buried a bit younder on that hill. I will stop for a prayer and catch up with y’all at the observatory, Marco, you can lead them up there”. And he did.
Let me tell you, the back side of Mt Hamilton is steep. Pretty, but steep and fun to ride. Having done it many times I never tire to do this section.
Five minutes later, Chris arrived to the observatory peaceful of mind and spirit. And ten minutes later we were descending the mountain. Again, no matter how many times you have ridden this road, twisting left and right, riding at a gentle pace… no hurry. This is why we ride. Okay, some of you need the thrill of speed… I don’t. Just being on a bike is all I need.
At the bottom, Quimby Road, to Tully later 680 heading north. Sierra Road in front of us. Straight up to catch great vistas of Santa Clara Valley. Eventually we found our way to the back side of militias siding the Calaveras Reservoir which is experiencing all kinds of remodeling. We all wondered as to what in heavens are they doing in the lake? None had a n answer. We ask the reader to educate us in the event of better knowledge… Thank you.
At the intersection with Sunol, Marco and Dick peeled off on their own. Chris, Paul, John and myself headed to the town of Sunol… Closed. Paul went home. Chris, John and Alberto continued on highway 84 were at highway 880 we parted company.