September 1, 2016

Devil’ Advocate: Cycling in CA’s East Bay

It is no secret there is a certain essence about cycling in the North Bay and the southern Peninsula of San Francisco that always draws comparisons to the greatest roads and most dramatic scenery in Europe. Cycling along the coastal roads of Highway 1, climbing Mount Tamalpais, and riding Ridgecrest Road certainly justify this feeling and create pause in any given day or ride to admire the natural, preserved beauty of Muir Woods. The city of San Francisco has become somewhat of a Northern California draw for tourists wishing to ride over the Golden Gate Bridge to the idyllic waterside town of Sausalito, and the Tour of California over the years has followed suit, with stages starting in San Francisco and finishing in Santa Rosa, though often without much drama save for the scenery. With the opportunity for better weather since moving the race to May in 2010, Mount Diablo has become the Bay area’s signature peak in a stage race that needs more demanding parcours to keep fans, riders and sponsors interested. In 2012, Tour of California organizers included the lower half of Mount Diablo on stage 3, which saw the peloton climb five miles before descending down the North Gate access road and finishing in Livermore. It was a token gesture at including the mountain, most likely to sort out logistics and crowd control with the idea that 2013 would see a full climb to the State Park peak, which reaches an altitude of 3,900 feet. And while the climb itself is widely considered an East Bay icon – just ask anyone who has participated in the Mount Diablo Hill Climb Time Trial – it’s the panorama from its peak that timelessly helps maintain its legendary stature. Read More



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