Category Archives: Tour of California

Oh no, It can’t Be Over

… No, I’m not referring to the end of Game of Thrones … although it is kinda sad that it is over.  No, I’m referring to the fun of seeing the Amgen Tour of California, live, and in person, along the route.  I really had a lot of fun this year.  Yes, I did take a week off of work to see this … My reasoning?  I am a cycling racing fan, and when it comes to your backyard, you don’t want to miss out.

I thought this year, I wouldn’t be able to make up the mountain tops, where I could see suffrage of the racers climbing the highest mountains.  However, I amazed myself, and I was able to climb climb and climb.  I made it seeing the pack reach the KOM at Mt. Hamilton on Stage 3, and seeing the big gaps being created because of this.  I think a lot of riders were still recovering from the previous day, where the climbed all the way up to South Lake Tahoe, with 10,000+ feet of climbing … and this day was no slouch either .. I think it had 9,000 feet.

I then drove down to Ventura on Thursday, seeing Stage 1 of the womens race at the finish line, and Stage 5 of the Men’s race.  It was really windy, and it was a fun, carnival-like atmosphere.

Then, the big day, queen’s stage on Glendora Mountain Road (GMR) to Mt. Baldy Ski Lifts.  That was a blast, especially climbing to the Ski Lifts.  The highlight was passing by Phil’s Cookie Corner, and the craziness there.  Then, by good fortune, when we made it to the top, a friend of ours had VIP passes for us, to see at the finish line, under the tents, with food, wine, coffee.  That was a blast.

I didn’t have enough, so I climbed up Hwy 2, and climbed Mt. Wilson, then dropped down to see the racers, as they made the descent down Hwy 2, before they reached Pasadena.

Not only did I have a great time watching the race, I got in 5 good days of riding … Let’s see … Monday, 31 mi/3675 ft, Tuesday, 47 mi/4700 ft, Friday, 54 mi/7900 ft, Saturday, 35 mi/4500 ft.  That’s a lot of climbing.

Oh, and if you want to see the pics I took, here is my flickr link …

I guess all good things must come to an end … today was tough, first day back at work … and all the emails … ugh … and I still have a bunch I have to go through.

Climbing the Queen’s Stage … That’s Painful!


Ok, the big day has come, the stage that everyone has been waiting for.  So obviously, us amateurs must do the same climb that the pro’s are doing.

Now I’ve done GMR to Baldy Ski Lifts before, just like what the men’s and women’s are doing, but this is different.  This time, there is the environment, adrenaline in the air.  You’ve got fans lining up along the route, some with cowbells, some with horns, some with tents, and a lot of loud classic rock songs blasting out.

We did Glendora Mountain Road, then Glendora Ridge Road (some call it little GMR … to me, it’s bigger, tougher, and has more pain points).  By the time I got to the end of little GMR, crowds were waiting at the Cow Saddle.  Got to see a lot of my old friends (that I typically ride with when I come to visit LA).  It was just one big party atmosphere.  I even saw the devil there, and took a picture with him.

The women’s route was going in the same direction that I was, and so we waited for them to come.  Coryn Rivera, a local girl, was leading the pack as they head down the hill, before climbing Baldy.  However, she couldn’t keep it up … instead, another California girl, Katie Hall took it (Bay Area hero).

Unfortunately, timing made it so that I couldn’t make it to the top in time to see the women finish.  It would have been cool to see Katie cross the finish line first.

We had to wait for the men to come by, before we can head up the ski lift.  When we finally go to the village, it was mayhem, a madhouse, a circus, as you would expect.

Climbing this today was different, most likely because you had hundreds of other riders doing the same climb.  There is just something about having a target of others, who are struggling the same amount as I am, and you get some adrenaline from that.

I was originally only going to go up to  Phil’s Cookie Corner, who hilariously entices riders with chocolate chip cookies.  Who am I to refuse … I grabbed a handful (about 5 cookies), and was munching them on my way up to the Ski Lift.  I think that gave me an extra boost to make it to the top.


After passing this switchback, I hear more classic rock, like the Stones, Allman Brothers Band … it helped me get through it.  Seeing others get off an walk for a little bit also gave me self confidence, and guided me up the hill.

Finally made it to the top.  A friend of ours had some VIP passes, so we were able to get into the tent, with some nice warm pastries, mash potatoes, coffee … at least it’s something to fill the stomach with.  We also got to see the broadcast on big screen tv, so we can get a sense of what was going on.

After finishing the ride, I did check my stats to compare with some of the pros … it’s laughable, really.


That is just insane!

ATOC means another 1 week PTO for Me

It’s that time of year again … Amgen Tour of California is coming to our backyards.  This always gets me excited … there are several things I look at on the calendar … Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and the week of Amgen Tour of California.

This year, it will come up and over Mt. Hamilton, before making its way to Morgan Hill.  This gives me a great excuse to climb Mt. Hamilton.  I had to look up the time on the ATOC web site, to see what approximate time they are expected to reach the KOM on Mt. Hamilton … it stated 1:45 PM.  Hmm … well I was originally going to start off around 9 am, so that I can get to the top by noon.  Things didn’t go so smoothly .. I always forget to bring something.  Even after all that, I managed to forget to bring my gloves.  D’oh.

I drove over to Cataldi Park, which is about a mile away from the base of Mt. Hamilton Road.  I didn’t want to park right at the intersection, as some residents there don’t like when us roudy cyclists take over their neighborhood.  I didn’t get going from there till 9:40 am.  By the time I got up over the top, it was around 12:40 pm.  Dang, 3 hours … I’m getting old and slow.

They didn’t have the KOM banner set up yet … I was trying to get near the KOM, but I couldn’t find it.  Well, I decided to go beyond the 1 mile marker (they have mile markers painted on the road, such that you can see it from a chopper hovering overhead).  I figure this would be a good spot, where we could still see some suffrage on some of the riders.

The pack didn’t arrive until around 2:15 pm (original estimate was 1:45 pm).  I guess the previous day, with 14,000 feet of climbing, spent a bunch of the racer’s legs.  This stage was still 9,000-10,000 feet of climbing, so it’s no slouch either.

We lucked out on weather, as by the time the riders came by, it was comfortable, short sleeve and shorts weather.  However, by the time we headed down the mountain, it started getting cold and breezy.

ATOC and Giro Starting on the Same Week

This year, the ATOC and Giro d’Italia are starting one day apart.  Woohoo!  That means as soon as I wake up (at the insane hour of 5 am), I can log on, and watch the remains of the day’s Giro d’Italia stage.  Then, in the afternoon (approximately 2 pm), the ATOC coverage begins.  This is the best time of the year for road cycling fans.

So don’t bother me with the silly stories of the NBA Finals, or the Stanley Cup, or even the boring MLB … it’s time for cycling!

And yes, I am taking a week off from work for this … I’ll be seeing two stages of the ATOC in person, as is my annual tradition.

My Vacation at the ATOC 2018

Amgen Tour of California is the week, and as I have always done, I take a week off of work, aka PTO, or Personal Time Off.  Yeah, I know, it’s sad that I’m not off to France, or Hawaii, or something like that for vacation … but spend it local, watching a bike race.

Here’s my justification though … Where else will you find world class athletic competition come to your backyard, and you get to view it … for FREE!!!!  Ok, so it’s not quite my backyard.  I had to drive > 1 hour, to get to Laguna Seca Raceway, and I had to ride about 1.5 hours to get to Morgan Hill, but I didn’t have to pay to get in.

So I got to view Stage 3, at Laguna Seca Raceway, a 2 mile racetrack, most known for motorcycle racing.  It was cool to have a cycling race here on this track.  I got there early, and it’s a good thing I did.  I was able to take 1 lap around the track.  It was pretty awesome!


Riding through that lap, it wasn’t really easy.  It had some significant pitches in it, but you only see either motorcycles race through here, or the pros racing here on their road bikes.  It’s much different when weekend warriors go and try ride this.  It was cool to ride through the corkscrew on this course.

I had to spend some time to waste, while they set everything up, so I decided to climb around the surrounding streets.  With just that little jaunt, I wound up with a 13.4 mile, 1500 foot climb ride … at least I got some workout in.

The race itself was really exciting.  I ended up watching it from inside the last corner before the finish.  It was cool to see the live video feed, then seeing the racers live in front of you as the speed pass you.


I also saw Stage 4, which is the time trial.  It was held in Morgan Hill, so I decided to ride over from home.  It was a good 30 mile ride out to the start.  They closed the course off at 10 am, and I get there via McKean, and there were at least two very visible signs, stating there is a race today, and the road will be closed from 10 am to 4 pm.  Even with these warnings, there were a few cars that went all the way on this road, only to find … the road closed!  They had to turn around and backtrack … one guy even was trying to get to work … WTF … can’t you read the signs?

Anyhow, I took a few pics right after the left the start ramp, and a few when they finish the course.

After taking a few of these pictures, it became clearly evident that I would not be able to tell who each of these riders are.  But it was really exciting.  The only drawback is, that with the time trial, you get all these riders passing by you for 2 hours … that’s 2 hours of standing up.  That gets you a bit fatigued .. and I still have 25 miles to go to ride back home, and in a stiff headwind!

There is just nothing like watching a tour live, especially when you see others as enthusiastic about this sport as you are.


Where else would you see something like this?

Camping and Viewing ATOC Stage 7 at Mt. Diablo

For the first time in the history of Amgen Tour of California, the queen stage (the hardest, ultimate stage of the race), is in the Bay Area.  Also, since the tour was going from south to north, I didn’t follow the tour down … I basically waited for it to come here.  We were all waiting with great anticipation for this stage, and so when Ruth tweeted that she’s reserving a camp site for this, and asked if I was interested, you bet I jumped at the opportunity.


The only drawback of this was I was not going to be able to view the Time Trial in San Jose.  I probably could have seen it, then met up at the camp site, but I didn’t want to hassle with driving, and traffic, so met up with everyone at Marco and Ruth’s house, and load up for the weekend camping trip.


So we got to the campsite in Live Oak at Rock City. I’ve always whizzed past this on my previous rides up Diablo, so it was a little refreshing to actually enjoy the scenery … ooh, what a concept.


After seeing up camp, we decided to scope out the best views to see where we should see the stage. We found a spot about 3km from the top, just past Camp Juniper, with a view of the road leading up to Camp Juniper, then having them whip around the hairpin. This would be an awesome spot.

Going back to Camp, I just realized I didn’t really come camping prepared. I forgot how cold it would get overnight. I didn’t bring a jacket (other than a windbreaker) and had to rely on arm warmers and knee warmers.

Our camping neighbors were a pair of families with some 5-7 year olds … and you know what a challenge they could be. They were so challenging that we didn’t need an alarm clock. At 6 am, I could hear the kid yelling “I want to play in the bush”, and was telling that with an attitude and a vengeance. Oof … I hope things improve with the kid layer on. Later I told the dad he’s got a tough job. Luckily we didn’t have to be on the road till about 9 or 10.

Now I brought this solar powered battery pack, with hopes I can charge the phone. Well I was able to get a slight charger out of it, but I couldn’t get more out of it. My phone was down to 60% charge, but I was only setting one red led lit .. normally I should see a green led. I later found out it shuts off after it fully charged a unit. I didn’t realize that it has a switch, until I came home. That teaches me for trying a new gadget without testing before a camping trip. Oh well, let’s see how long the phone lasts.


Marco and I rode up ahead, but we could only get to a little past the 2 km mark. They had a bike valet there, and no bikes were allowed past that point. We met fellow ultra distance cyclist Jason. He made it up here .. you guessed it … on his fixie. If we wanted to continue on, we would have to hike it up the rest of the way. No thanks … we decided to just go back down to Camp Juniper.


We settled in above Camp Juniper, and we were the first ones at that spot. It was only a matter of time before everyone else discovered that spot as well, and it soon turned into a zoo. I was soon fighting for my spot, and what was a great unobstructed view became a challenge.



I don’t see how photographers do it .. film spring events with these challenges.


Then the race came up to our spot. Talk about a madhouse ….


Now usually when they race up, you wait for either the broom car, or the end of convoy car, and that gives you the sign it is safe to go down the hill.


I don’t know if this happens in other events, but in all the ATOC hill stages I have been to, fans always break that rule, and ride down the course before all the racers have completed the course. That just drives me crazy. Maybe that’s the course Marshall in me.

When we finally went down, there was mad confusion at the junction. Seems like the course marshalls were trying to direct the team’s to go straight, even trying to direct the fans to go straight. Well over of those fans was Joy, who was camping with us. It turned out she went a couple miles down the hill before realizing this did not look familiar, and better turn back. Marco went ahead and picked her up in the van, but at least she got more climbing than the rest of us.

All in all, it was a great weekend. Camping and watching the tour … what a great combination.

ATOC Stage 4 – a Bay Area Cycling Holiday!

We should make it a cyclist holiday … every year, and I think it’s the same stage, on a Wednesday, ATOC goes through San Jose, and always has a huge turnout.  Everyone must be utilizing their PTO’s this day.  The question is, which cyclist was not out here enjoying the tour, and has to be slaving away in the office?

I rode to Sierra with my friends Michael and Henry, and met up with JoBob, who took this shot.  Thanks Jo.

I also took my helmet cam with me, and took a short video of me grinding my way up the initial steep part of Sierra (and there are many other steep sections to follow too).  But when you watch it, notice the guy in front of me with the Swiss flag.  I have a hard enough time climbing Sierra, and to carry a flag, with the wind kicking around?  That’s HTFU!

With the sucky weather (in May!!!), there was still a gloomy outlook that it might rain, but luckily it held off.  It stayed dry, but it was still very chilly.  We got a spot about 1400 feet up … couldn’t miss it … there was a “Kitten of Flanders” flag proudly displayed.  Gee, could you tell it was cold???  Everyone shivering waiting for the race to come by.

Reports were that riding up to the top … you couldn’t get to the top, as it was all roped off.  Still, we had a really good spot.  We could see the riders coming from below coming up.

We got really lucky, as the race got closer and closer to Sierra, clouds shifted, and the sun shined exactly where we were.  Perfect timing.

There was huge separation between the leaders in the front, and the rest of the riders.  There were probably 10 different packs on the climb up.  After a while, we started seeing some of the lead climbers, who made it to the finish, descent back down Sierra.  Someone forgot to tell them the back of the pack is still climbing up Sierra Road.  Wow, that could have been dicey.  It was actually quite dangerous, flying down the hill, and not knowing there’s a big pelaton still climbing up the hill.

Finally, the broomwagon comes, and we now know the end of the race has passed by.  Wow, that was fun!  Now for the descent down.

For more pics, click here

Tour of California Stage 7 – Time Trial in LA

I couldn’t get enough of the ATOC, so  I made the trek to LA (oh, and visited dad while I was down here … nice excuse, eh?).

Now this time trial is right in the belly of LA … starts right by the Staples Center, goes by the Coliseum, passes through City Hall …. basically it is shutting down LA, the third largest city in America.  This is huge, and I had to be a part of this.

Not wanting to deal with traffic and hassles of getting around downtown, I decided to take Metro Rail from South Pasadena.  I had never taken Metro Rail before, so this should be interesting.  I went with my friends Mary and Joe, and we took the Gold line, transferred to the Red Line, then a short hop on the Blue line, and it dropped us right at the start of the time trial.  It wasn’t quite as bad as I thought … in fact, it was pretty smooth.  I’m going out on a limb, and saying it is even smoother than taking BART into downtown SF … ok, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but you get the idea … taking the train to LA is a nice alternative.  For those in LA, wanting to get to downtown, try Metro Rail as an alternative.

It’s a good thing I didn’t decide to take my bike on Metro Rail … there was little room to manuever and many times, had to carry the bike up and down stairs, just to get around.

Ok, onto the festivities of the time trial.  First, we gotta do the usual, like searching for free schwag at the festival.  The usuals were out there … Livestrong, Radio Shack, Garmin, BMC … all the big teams with big booths.  What was surprising at this year’s TofC was no giveaway cowbells, no free Livestrong chalk.

It’s just another excuse to try finding goodies, oogle at some of the fully decked out bikes, and just wasting time before the actual event transpired.

We ended up just around the corner from Flower and 11th Street.  Since we had spent quite a bit of time at the festival, the crowd gathered finding their spots, while we were still looking for schwag.  Eventually, we did find a spot that didn’t have too many obstructions, and we also found a shade … that’s good and bad … good that we wouldn’t get sunburned … bad, in that later in the day, shadows would creep across, causing some havoc with exposure on our pics.

It turned out we were situated where we would see the riders twice each lap … and since the time trial ran for two laps, we get to see each rider 4 times.  This provided some challenges in taking action shots as the passed by in front of us.  The better shot was when they came across the other side.

I found when trying to shoot the riders passing in front of me, it tested my skills of panning with the rider.  For the fast TT riders, like Fabian Cancellara  or Dave Zabriskie, it meant having the picture not completely framed the right way.

There was a bit of an anxious moment, about a quarter of the way through the field.  One of the moto’s took the turn a little too fast, and couldn’t negotiate the right turn, and proceeded to crash into the center dividing barrier.  The rider after the moto managed to just avoid the obstacle just in time.  They were able to get the barrier back in place before the rider on the other side came through.  Kudos to the tour folks for acting quickly, so that none of the competitors were affected by this.  This was way before the GC contenders were scheduled, and this was not covered on Versus.  Lucky for the moto.

All in all, I’d say the time trial in downtown LA was a success.  Whether or not they will do it again, that remains to be seen.  Initial reports from the LAPD was very favorable, in the way it was organized and the way it was controlled.  If it was held in downtown again, I’d come back for it. Getting in and out of downtown was very smooth via Metro Rail.

We later went to the team buses to see if we could get some free schwag.  Some got lucky, but not me.  I guess I’m not persistent enough.  I was able to get a shot of Levi as he was leaving the team bus. I could tell he was not in the mood to sign, but he was gracious enough to take some time to sign a few autographs.

We also hovered around the Columbia-HTC truck, with hopes of seeing Michael Rogers (they had a big camera set up for a possible interview).  However, we didn’t hang around long enough for him to show.  Instead, I took some bike porn pictures … nice, eh?

Viewing Tour of California Stage 4 – Sierra Road

Stage 4 starts in downtown San Jose, and after a few miles, they climb vertically up Sierra Road.  Anyone, who could take the day off, who was anyone in cycling in the area, made the trek over to Sierra Road.  Some in fact climbed it all the way to the top … yours truly included.  Here’s proof … me and my friend Michael, at the top by the KOM.

They actually had an amateur competition … a Sierra Road hill challenge.  They had it all professional, with a booth and everything.  It’s pretty cool.  Too bad I didn’t find out about till later.  My friends Chris and Deborah did the challenge.  In a way, I’m glad I didn’t know about it.  Otherwise, I’d be stressing about how good … or how bad I did.  This way, I didn’t have to tweet about my power output to the rest of the Wrecking Crew.  LOL

I also got to hook up with a bunch of old friends.  This seems to be what the tour does … it provides reunion of sorts.

I met my friend Michael, from BF, at the top.  Later on, Jo, Lee, Deborah, Chris, and Bassem … we all hung out together at the top.  It was very cool.

Now this was a change … it was actually sunny out there.  The last time I was up here, for the Tour of California, it was sunny too.  Maybe this isn’t cursed after all.

After being moved around a bit, I situated myself on the right side shoulder of the finishing stretch of the KOM.  I had some really excited cycling fans to the left of me … these are the type that can’t just stand behind the white line, and have to get in the middle of the road, yelling like a crazed animal, ringing their cowbells … and obstructing everyone’s view in the process.  Why do I complain about this?  Well, there is this law of physics, you see.  In order to take a picture of an image, the light that forms the image of the object need to reach the CCD of the camera by line of sight.  If this line of sight is obstructed, you won’t get the image you want.

I was lucky enough to get one shot of the first two cyclists to make it up the KOM.  It was not one of the top GC contenders, but it was still cool to see them really charging for the line.  Gotta love Gimp (open source alternative to Photoshop).

What’s my point?  Well, if you are at the top of a KOM, and it’s a very popular KOM, don’t even try to take a picture of the racers as they go past you.  You won’t get a shot in.  I should have learned from my experiences at Balcolm Canyon 2 years ago on TOC … same thing happened, but I guess my mind is going these days.

After the pelaton had gone through, we decided to descend the other side by way of Felter, then Calaveras, then back to the cars.  Chris and Deborah didn’t know this route, so I decided to guide them through.  It’s a nice alternative, instead of just doing an out and back … plus descending the 16-20% grades we had just climbed, didn’t seem like a lot of fun.

Everything was going alright, until the cars in front of us just stopped.  One of them was a Calfire truck, and one thing I feared was that it was a cyclist down.  Why did I say that … it turned out it was a cyclist who had gone down.  Looks like they already had him in a neck brace and on a stretcher.  Oh, I hate seeing that.  This is the second day in a row I have seen this, after coming down a hill after watching the TOC go by.  Why, people why???  Be careful when you are descending.  It is not good karma to have cycling accidents on the day of the TOC.

Viewing Amgen Tour of California Stage 3 – Tunitas Creek

This year, I am viewing the Tour of California as a spectator.  Last year, I volunteered to be a traveling Course Marshall, and that was a lot of work.  But what I noticed was I wasn’t really able to enjoy the race as a spectator.  This year, I decided to be a spectator.

I decided to wait until the tour comes to our backyard, so Stage 3 comes to Tunitas Creek.  They climb Tunitas Creek, before descending King’s Mountain, then head towards the coast via Hwy 84.

This year, the tour is held in May, in an effort to avoid the rain, and avoid the cold … well, that was a nice plan.  Guess what … it’s mid-May, and we have rain and cold.  As luck would have it, I would get a flat, on a cold and wet day.  I eventually got to the base of King’s Mountain, and as soon as I get onto King’s Mountain, there is a constant stream of cyclists climbing up King’s Mountain Road.  One thing I found odd … I saw a bunch of riders going in the reverse direction.  Now that is the direction in which the racers will be going, so maybe they just wanted to ride the same route as the racers?  I just found that curious.

The rain wasn’t too hard, but it was constant … like a heavy drizzle (hmmm, is that an oxymoron?).  In any event, I was getting more damp, and more wet, and how I wish I had brought my rain shoe boots.  Now my feet are soaking wet, and I’m still climbing Kings.  You never realize how much rain and cold will drain you until you actually try climbing it.

Most of the hard climbing is not at the top of the hill, but actually 3 miles down from the top.  So the KOM for this climb is not that significant (in my opinion).  Heck, I can actually pick up some pretty good speed in the final 2 miles of the climb.

It seems the further I go down the other side, the colder it gets.  Finally, I see my friend Steve, from Alto Velo, at about the last steep section of Tunitas Creek, where it makes a sweeping right hand turn.  This is where I would stake my spot.  This is a nice spot, not just because of the view, but also the way the trees are, it is sheltering me from rain drops, in the event the rain does start getting harder.

Some of the tour vans/trucks will throw out freebies to the crowd.  I was anticipating they would hand out a bunch of cow bells, or thunder sticks or something like that.  Last year, LiveStrong handed out a bunch of chalk where fans can write messages to their favorite cyclists (but I think this created too much chalk dust when they pass by).  This time, they threw out something, but we couldn’t tell what it was.

Ok, how many cyclists does it take to decipher a freebie?  Four seems to be the magical number … and what was the freebie???  a stinkin’ patch kit.  I guess economic times are tough, aren’t they?

This spot was getting more and more popular.  We had some marine boot camp stop by our same spot … I think they knew about this spot, as later, I saw a big bus at the top, and they just ran their boot camp down 3 miles just to view the race.

More and more marines were coming down, till we had almost 40 marines there.  Looks like we won’t have a security problem here.  Looking for a few good men?  How about a few good cyclists?  Sorry, I had to throw that one in.

We even had the Kings Mountain elementary school pay a visit.  I met my friend Alan (aka SesameCrunch, from there.  His kid is in the elementary school, and they were there to cheer on the likes of Lance, DZ, Levi, George, and other American cyclists.  This was truely becoming an awesome venue.

It’s a good thing we had all this much going on where we were … otherwise, we’d be bored out of our gorge.  Being cold and wet is one thing, but suffering through that with nothing to do???  That would be pure torture.

The riders finally come … yippee!!!  However, due to my ineptitudes with doing action shots with my camera, most of the shots didn’t come out (and those that did came out really blurry).  Since this is the first KOM (King of the Mountain), there wasn’t a big split in the group.  There was a small group of 5 that charged up ahead … but the rest of the pack stayed intact on the climb up Tunitas.  I have never before seen a 100 rider pack, all ride together up Tunitas.  I heard one report they were going up Tunitas at 16 mph …. that’s 16 mph.  I’d be lucky if I maintained 6-7 mph.

Ok, that is it … now to get off the mountain.  Since it is so wet and slick, I’m not in a real hurry to get down the mountain.  I had made it down without incident, but about 500 yards from the bottom of Kings, we see a rider down.  That is definitely not what I wanted to see.  It turns out the cyclist was riding a touring bike, with panniers on both sides … he was carrying some road cones … what the heck is he doing carrying road cones on his bike?  Perhaps this caused some inbalance, and he lost balance?  He was a little cut up, but what drove me crazy was that he was on his back, and he kept trying to roll around, move, and do everything that someone injured should not do.  We kept telling him not to move, but he wouldn’t listen.

I waited long enough for CHP, fire trucks, and paramedics to come.  Out of respect, I chose not to take any pictures … these are scenes I do not want to take.

As soon as I got out of Woodside, and closer to Palo Alto, I see sun, and shadows … where the heck was this while we were freezing our asses off on Tunitas Creek?

Just to add insult to injury, I get home to watch the live coverage, and they are on Bonny Doon; it is nice and sunny there.  I bet you anything that the sun popped out right after the pelaton headed towards the coast.  Just our luck.

Hopefully Stage 4 will be clear and sunny.  I definitely don’t want to be sitting in rain while on Sierra Road.