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October 2023 Riding Highlights

Warmest month of the year here in San Francisco!

Golden Gate Bridge

The start of the month had some warm nights with low winds — I checked the wind dashboard on a particularly warm night and got stoked1 at the 6 mph winds. We rode from the Outer Richmond to the east vista point.

The marquee of the Balboa Theater with the 31 Balboa bus coming down the street.

Atlas came with us in the Burley trailer! The first ride over the bridge (and probably not the last) for this 13 year old pug.

Three people on bicycles entering an intersection crossing the 4 star theatre.

It’s so rare that I bike on the east sidewalk! The bridge is so majestic when you have it all to yourself and there’s no crosswind. An enormous treat.

Kat riding around the bend on one of the Golden Gate Bridge towers
Kat riding back on the east sidewalk of the Golden Gate Bridge

Tennessee Valley Beach

My favourite ride of the month was this loop from the city to Tennessee Valley Beach and back via headlands trails.

We took 8th Ave up to Slow Lake St. Ben’s out on his new(ish) Crust Romanceur build.

Ben on his Crust Romanceur in an orange hoodie that reads 'Slow is Forever' leaning against a colorful truck at a traffic stop.
The west sidewalk of the Golden Gate Bridge with Ben riding into the foggy background

The Conzelman parking lot is the place for re-upping on sunscreen and for obligatory bike detail photos.

The back of Ben's Crust Romanceur featuring his Busch&Muller rear dynamo light and frame pump

This tree hanging over Conzelman Rd at this bend always hits.

A curved road with a lone tree hanging over the apex of the turn. A cyclist on a single speed bike is leaving the frame and my group of friends is biking away
Kat descending a twisty bit of the gravel Julian trail. Fog is coming down the hill in the background.

The Julian trail takes you on to Bunker Rd for a bit before turning on to the Rodeo Valley trail.

The group biking into the foggy hills surrounded by yarrow and tall grass.

Bobcat is the trail we’re all most excited about. Here’s Jerry and Sarah making their way up.

Jerry and Sarah biking up around a bend of a hill with a bush poking out of the hill on their right and fog rolling in to the left

Near the top of Bobcat you’ll find the tree!

Kat and Ben standing in front of the oak tree from the Scenic Routes logo.
A close up of the oak tree with the Marin hills in the background.
The view down Bobcat with two riders descending around a turn and foggy hills in the background

Ben and Sarah needed to collect rocks, as geologists.

Ben and Sarah crouched on the ground looking at rocks.
A magenta voile strap around a basket that reads 'Slow is Forever'

Off we go to the top of Bobcat.

Ben riding out of the saddle up a hill.
A curvy uphill trail showing the bushy and rocky hills of the Marin Headlands.
Fog covering the tops of the hills in Marin with an eagle flying above the fog.

Sadly, Goldberg isn’t on this ride with us. But the Goldsmobile is still ready to rip down Marincello.

A vintage mountain bike with a Clydesdale cargo fork leaning against a junction in the trail.
Sarah at the crest of a hill

Marincello was a really fun descent. I didn’t really get any photos. It was my first time on Marincello and I’m excited to climb it soon to see it at a slower pace. Marincello takes us down to our destination: Tennessee Valley Beach. By this point in the day it was getting quite gloomy on the coast.

A wave coming into the shore at Tennessee Valley Beach

A Ben-shaped cutout in the rock!

Ben sitting in a gap in jagged rocks which outlines his silhouette

Friends holding beach objects.

Jerry holding an empty pod from some plant matter we couldn't identify.
Kat holding a fun marine structure
Kat holding a small, smooth, dark pebble with a single stripe

Tennessee Valley.

Kat and Ben riding into the Tennessee Valley hills
Fog rolling down the hills behind a horse stable and grasses

We took the Tennessee Valley Rd to the Mill Valley path back into the city. Going through Fort Baker skips some of the cycling abomination that is Sausalito and you get this view of the city. It was getting real cold by this point.

A dock with most of San Francisco in the background fogged over.

Rob Hill

Sarah and Ben did a small overnighter at Rob Hill in the Presidio. Kat, Jerry, and I tagged along for the ride up and the e-bike carried a bunch of firewood up with a Burley trailer.

Jerry, Ben, and Kat climbing up Battery Caulfield in the golden hour glow

Bike detail shot in the campfire glow.

The Romanceur logo on the downtube of a bike in the glow of a campfire

Pumpkin Patch!! 🎃

Kat and I have been wanting to load up our bikes with pumpkins for ages. We finally got a group together and went to Clancy’s pumpkin patch to do it. The location across from Garden for the Environment, of course.

First, a quick Great Highway lap to celebrate the season. The clouds over the Marin Headlands were amazing that day.

Kat, Jerry, and Sarah riding northbound on the Great Highway facing the headlands with a blue sky and lots of broken up clouds

Say hello to the turkeys! Kat and I were holding armfuls of pumpkins at this point.

Three turkeys behind a pumpkin

The bikes and their hauls.

Five bikes in front of the Clancy's entrance banner and a variety of halloween decorations.

Atlas was thrilled to be riding with two new pals.

A pug with his tongue out sitting in front of two pumpkins

What else are racks for?

A pumpkin on a rear rack held in with three straps
A front basket with a bunch of pumpkins including one big one with a San Franpsycho hat on it.

Bike Party

We had several dozen riders on the Golden Gate Bridge and security wouldn’t open the north gate for us so we all had to turn around mid-bridge. Apparently they told the front of the group it was commuters only. Marin 🙄. A smaller group of us went back later and then caught up with the group at Dolores Park and it was great!

A view of the San Francisco skyline at night from the north.

Angel Island completely in the dark. I’d like to do some bikecamping there one day. Two amazing nights crossing the bridge in a row!

A view of Angel Island in the dark with the East Bay behind it

Our small bridge crew catching back up to the rest of Bike Party. (Also shoutout to the 33 trolley bus!)

Several people riding bikes with Kat in the foreground backlit by a 33 trolley bus.

Last Minute Hawk Hill

It’s starting to get dark so soon 😭. I went up Hawk Hill at the last minute one night it was going in and out of rain and drama. I saw a coyote wandering around Conzelman and turned up my music to scare it off. I love seeing them tho!

The Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco skyline at night with a straight line of clouds just barely above it.
A view of Point Bonita from the other side of Hawk Hill

Moody descent.

Conzelman Rd in the dark facing fogged over hills
The moon over the Golden Gate Bridge and Salesforce tower.

Around San Francisco

Goldberg tried out Atlas’ doggles.

Goldberg the 51% chihuahua in a milk crate attached to the front of a bike

The heliotropium smelled so nice in Strawberry Hill.

Small, white, blue, and tetracyclic heliotropium flowers

One of Kat’s favourite trails in Golden Gate Park is part of the old 7-line streetcar right-of-way. You can still bike through this same tunnel as pictured in 1947. The sand has been too deep to bike up the hill from MLK to the trail for the whole summer and you get stuck.

The rear of a bike in front of a track of sand

We got some rain at the end of the month and now we’re good to go though! The end of that trail brings you to La Playa St and near that is the new Andytown location and the terminus of the 5, 5R, and 31 Muni routes. An appropriate spot for this sign.

Some corvids standing beside a sign that reads 'Loitering Encouraged This is a Nice Place'

One of my favourite trails in the park always gets the best dappled light.

Kat standing over her bike on a dirt trail surrounded by eucalyptus trees creating shadows over the path

I’m not sure if this path in Golden Gate Park has a name but it was bursting with mushrooms early in the month.

My Kona e-bike and Kat's purple vintage Trek under a large tree

I took a loop around the music concourse while waiting for some takeout to be ready and look! This ferris wheel is now relocated to the piers. I will miss its glow but not its fossil fuel generator.

The Skystar ferris wheel glowing in the fog.

Safe Street Rebel hosted a group slow ride around some slow streets in the Mission and Bernal Heights.

A large group of riders biking through an intersection in Mission Creek.

Free Palestine

Shoutout to the bike marshals at the Gaza rally this month.

A crowd of people at a rally for Gaza with Palestine flags

  1. I would not shut up about it, as Sarah will attest to. ↩︎