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Messages - cgarch

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California / Re: Tours around San Francisco Area
« on: October 08, 2014, 03:07:23 pm »
You could conceivably go either direction. There is one possible route that involves going out towards that Napa Valley (ferry to Vallejo), heading north towards Calistoga (camp at Boethe Mills SP (sp?) ) over through Healdsburg/Santa Rosa (skimpy camping) out to the coast (Bodega Bay SP) then south (Samuel P. Taylor SP) than back to SF.

South maybe not so good, down CA 1 to Half Moon Bay SP >Santa Cruz (New Brighton SP) > Watsonville Area (Sunset Beach SP) and then? That's the tough part (my opinion) - either backtrack or take public trans back to SF.



General Discussion / Re: Washington Hiker/Biker Campsites?
« on: July 22, 2014, 02:36:45 pm »
Olympic NP doesn't have hiker/biker sites

We've only been to the NPS Olympic campground at Fairholm (or Fairholme) once (2009) but it did have specific HB sites [down a rather steep trail]. Nice too. Kalaloch does not. If you plan to visit Kalaloch before Labor day a reservation is highly recommended.

Routes / Re: Washington parks route
« on: May 21, 2014, 04:27:10 pm »
Depends . . where you're from, what you're looking for, those sorts of things. We've ridden a portion of it around the Olympic Peninsula and will be riding more of it this summer (along the Strait and out to Cape Flattery). We haven't ridden the eastern portion yet. I like it, and think pretty highly of the area for riding. YMMV.


While I do not have a specific route recommendation, you might find this CGOAB article of use.

Wayne is an Oregon local and knows the area well.

Santa Rosa, CA

Routes / Re: Tenting on the Pacific Coast Route
« on: April 07, 2014, 06:30:41 pm »
Agree with Norsman, camping along the Pac Coast is pretty easy stuff - there are plenty of journals to attest to that.

I did look at your route and specifically in the Sonoma County area. I think you're making a big mistake to leave the coast at Skaggs Springs - Stewarts Point Road. It's one thing to do that road unloaded and questionable to do that loaded . . really questionable . . there are no services between the coast and Lake Sonoma, and that includes potable water sources. And there are many stretches that are 10-15% grades for many miles, some that are exposed. We use this road for an obnoxious double century called the Terrible Two and the Terrible Two's Bad Little Brother. While only ~36 miles, you may wish you had gone further down CA 1 and taken CA 116 and some other backroads to reach CA 128 through Healdsburg.

Here's a link to a ridewithgps route map - look at the elevation profile from mile 107.3 to 143.3 and you can make your own decision. Best of luck.

Retired Terrible Two Director
Santa Rosa, CA

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Connect PCH with SC
« on: March 14, 2014, 07:23:46 pm »
And another shot.

Connecting ACA Routes / Re: Connect PCH with SC
« on: March 14, 2014, 07:15:39 pm »
I cannot say enough about how great Highway 96 and its surrounding roads are. Yeah it's a little tough getting from Ashland over Siskiyou summit to the turnoff, but once you're on 96 you are rewarded with a wonderful 2 lane highway in pretty good condition. There is some variability in the shoulders but then there isn't that much traffic anymore. You follow the Klamath (designated wild and scenic river) for a long ways in a generally downhill trending road until you reach Weitchpec. There, at the confluence of the Trinity, you climb back up towards Willow Creek and thence to a summit climb on 299 to reach Arcata. There is a bike trail in the area (basically the old highway) that circumvents some of the crappy parts of 299 on the way to Arcata. There are a variety of FS campgrounds as well. Enough towns on the route as well to restock.

Our club does a one-week tour in the Klamath area. It started out as one time trip - it's now an annual affair and sells out. The area includes the Marble Mountain and Russian Wildernesses which make for good alternate route choices.

36 is a great road, no doubt but hilly and remote. 299 is a non-starter (my opinion).

Routes / Re: Need help mapping out DETAIL Route. San Juans to San Fran
« on: March 06, 2014, 03:48:47 pm »
Much of the ODT is paved, though it is not always a contiguous trail - meaning that occasionally you have to get on some roadway, usually US101. The Kirkendahl/Spring  book is generally relevant with one clear caveat - the ferry across Grays Harbor is kaput.

As for leaving from Orcas, either route would be good, though the Anacortes route would be easier (IMO).

Generally biking the west coast is a pretty straightforward affair. Like magic, there are campgrounds at reasonable day distances with nearby towns for supplies. Hard to beat. It bears repeating that checking out and search for the ACA Pacific Coast routes will lead you to journals that well describe the region.

Santa Rosa, CA

Yes it is safe, as long as you ride safely.

Gears? There are some long climbs, not too bad, but you will wish you had lower gears (Crescent City south, Leggett . . ). Oregon grades seldom exceed 6%, California is not as kind.

Lots of HB sites open, no reservation required.

Strongly suggest you check out Pacific Coast journals at CGOAB


Routes / Re: Best route from Vallejo to San Francisco
« on: February 10, 2014, 02:55:05 pm »
I considered offering that route or something similar, but I think there are some disadvantages: It would add about 3 days to the trip, it adds some significant climbing and, until they reach the coast, there are few if any camping choices except wild camping (there is a KOA in Petaluma). It also involves some convoluted route planning. The good news is that Cal Trans completed a beautiful widening of CA 116 between Sonoma and Petaluma and it is now feasible to ride that road between the two towns. All that being said, the pleasure of reaching the coast is worth it.

Routes / Re: Best route from Vallejo to San Francisco
« on: February 10, 2014, 12:30:15 pm »
Judging from the website and the list of updates, it appears to cover Vallejo. Would really help if he had larger map with a boundary of the area covered . . That being said, I think one can get just as much info from a Google route search. The route choice is fairly limited. It's a fairly urban area at that point and services are not hard to find. The Google route correctly picks up the bike routes so that's a plus.


Routes / Re: Best route from Vallejo to San Francisco
« on: February 04, 2014, 06:32:16 pm »
In my view the best route is to actually take the ferry to SF. Consider riding out to the Golden Gate Bridge and hang out on it and ride back. Otherwise . . . CA 37 or CA 12. Details . . .

You would head north out of Vallejo before heading west on 37. 37 is a busy two lane with lots of heavy truck traffic. It has fairly broad shoulders and traverses the impressive San Pablo Bay Marsh. And I can say I have seen touring cyclists out here. While scenic, the traffic is not much fun (especially after traversing US 50 . . ). Once it returns to land at Sears Point, the road changes to a 4 lane highway. Shoulders continue to be fairly good, but as you reach US 101 you will be directed to side streets in Novato. The route from Novato to Sausalito is convoluted at best. Consider ordering the Marin County Bike Coalition map of the area to plan that. There are some dedicated bike trails on what remains of the former railroad right-of-way from Larkspur south.

You could also consider CA 12, a bit further north. Not much better though for the same reasons - scenic but heavy traffic. And there are stretches with zero shoulder forcing you to side roads which are great, but convoluted. And you're further north making it a longer run to rejoin the route to Sausalito.

Feel free to ask for any more detail on the area.

Santa Rosa, CA

Addendum: if you Google 'Vallejo to Sausalito' and select the bike route option, drag it over to 37 (it defaults to the ferry) it will take you to a logical bike route. From Sausalito you would continue on to the bridge and into the city.

Yeah, I kinda get it. But I've wondered why routes on the left coast don't start with 1 and finish in the 90s on the right coast, sort of left to right. S'pose this is could be confusing dodging on and off of CA 1. But then why isn't the route numbered 99, given that the right coast starts with corridor 1? Or is there hope for a Corridor 99 in Hawaii? The similarity to the US highway numbering system is hard to miss (in contrast to the Interstate numbering system). Good for a beer fueled discussion . .

General Discussion / Re: Advice or Feedback for Pacific Highway Cycle 2014
« on: November 07, 2013, 11:33:53 am »
. . . You still need to cut in (East) to the official route to cross the Columbia unless you brave the Astoria Bridge which is scary when cars / trucks lose patience with you. 

The Astoria bridge is a daunting prospect, but not for the traffic. There is adequate shoulder to ride on the bridge and when we rode it (tandem and bob) we had no issues with the traffic, and they had none with us. More problematic is the onshore wind that can be a little rough as you try to stay in your lane - the side wind makes navigating a loaded bike a little tough. Southbound the first 3 miles are relatively flat, but at the rise for the ship channel, the grade bumps to 6+% and that part really puts you up in the wind. Once you're over the top, simply take the lane and make the horseshoe onto Oregon terra firma and you're good. The seagull that hovered about 6-8' up wind had me concerned that it might target us but guess we were lucky - no white splats sent our way. You can do it - just be careful and pay attention.

Santa Rosa, CA

I'd have to agree with Raybo. If you aren't that pressed for time, take the 101 loop around Olympic Park. We did it in 2009 - journal here -> Have given considerable thought to doing this area again, and here's some of what I would change. From Fairhaven, consider stopping at Bogachiel and touring into the Hoh rain forest. Stay a day or two at Kalaloch. After Lake Quinault, consider going out towards Copalis before heading into Hoquiam and Aberdeen (no ferry across the mouth yet.). After that it's a pretty much a straight run to Oregon and the coast. To me the inland route in Washington is not appealing. There is the factor of rain which has a stronger presence on the WA coast. Best.


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