Riding in the rain is not my favourite thing to do, and the forecast for Saturday was not very inspiring – especially after a week with high temperatures. On Tuesday I had gone out on a sunny morning with Alex again, and ridden to Muir Woods, north to Stinson, then up the dreaded climb to Pantoll. My legs felt pretty good on that ride, so I am starting to feel happy with my form.
For Saturday, I had agreed long ago to help with the Zen-a-thon ride organised by Zen Center, from City Center to Green Gulch, to shepherd people along the route. Despite the damp morning, we had eleven people show up ready to ride, including Bryan and Steve who had come over from Green Gulch and were going to ride back with us. The indefatigable Myles was the leader, and I was happy to stay at the back making sure that no-one got left behind. To make things a little more interesting for myself, I was doing the ride on my fixed gear, which I have taken to Green Gulch a number of times; the climb out of Mill Valley can be a challenge, but then so can the downhill on highway 1 when you have to keep pedaling all the way.
The group was not a fast one, and we had a number of stops on the way; the rain barely let up, and when we got to the top of the climb at Four Corners, we were enveloped in fog, which gave the whole event quite an epic feel.
It was comforting to arrive at Green Gulch and find quite a celebratory atmosphere, with people having been riding and hiking from there, and a crowd in the Wheelwright Center enjoying sandwiches and snacks in front of a warm fire. Since I had a dinner engagement, I could not wait for the closing ceremony (and the potential several hours returning at the same pace we had taken to come over); once I had eaten, and before I got too cold and stiff, I set back off with another faster rider. Luckily the rain had stopped, and we had decent weather all the way back – we had a nice chat, and still made it back in less than half the time it had taken to come over. I was very glad to get in the bath afterwards to recover.
Eleven riders ready to take to the road