Steve's Trip Report Index - Next Day #2
Day 1: Del Mar, CA to Julian, CA
56 miles - Trip Begins At Del Mar Beach, Difficult Uphill To Julian - February 1, 2008
|My adventure began on the morning of February 1 at a beach in the Del Mar area of San Diego.
Jennifer, a local resident and friend let me crash at her place after driving two days from
transported me and my bicycle to the beach.
Of course, I got the standard photo of me standing in the ocean.
Note that the waves did come crashing into myself and the bike, but this was the best picture.
I spent some extra minutes looking out at the ocean, enjoying the beach and getting all my
gear on my bike, but in short order, I was on my bike and pedaling away on Del Mar Heights Road in San Diego.
Jennifer left me all alone at the beach at approximately 10 a.m.,
a very late start that I would regret at the end of the day as the 4,000 foot ascent to Julian took much longer
than projected. As I began riding along Del Mar Heights Road and
other neighborhoods heading towards the suburb of Poway, the reality had set in:
The very intense planning and organizing stage was over, and
the journey of bicycling long distances by myself
on a daily basis had begun!
|FIRST: I stopped at the top of a very high percentage grade on Del
Mar Heights Road to rest and capture this home with
Because I live deep in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado where
winters are about six months long,
the novelty of seeing beautiful palm trees along the route never faded.
I really do love hot summer weather and I often became giddy thinking
about bicycling in places like this, for palm trees are a
sign that one lives in a place where it is fairly warm (if not hot) most of the year. Yay!
SECOND: An array of palm trees in a median on Carmel Valley Road.
I went through some upper class neighborhoods and got lost as I worked my way east towards Poway and Highway 67.
|I eventually reached Scripps Poway Highway and continued east.
That road provided a lot of uphill! If I lived in San Diego, this would be a great place to workout with a bike.
My other lasting memory of this road is I fell twice on my bike when I
failed to unlock my new bicycling shoes from the pedals. The first
incident happened at a busy traffic light with numerous cars and shopping
malls nearby; The second fall transpired somewhere close to the top photo.
While I have been an avid road biker for years,
it was only two months
earlier that I made the switch to clipless cycling shoes and I did not
have enough experience riding with them to fully know the hazards of falling.
Ha! Well, I learned twice the hard way (literally) in San Diego and it didn't happen again.
Fortunately, I was not hurt.
||Arrival in Ramona, California. I still had a lot more climbing to do!
||The remaining 22 miles to Julian were grueling. It's true I cycle regularly
in Colorado and have
done many major passes,
but I gained a lot of respect for the mountains
east of San Diego.
The weather all day was fairly cloudy with the appearance that it could rain at any given
time. That made it difficult to take decent pictures of scenery. Also, because I had started
late, I was in a time crunch to arrive in Julian before it got dark - I simply didn't
have time to waste. I pedaled the final seven mile uphill grade from San Ysabel
to Julian with the skies becoming dark and somewhat dangerous. Not long after
arriving in Julian, it was pitch black and I snapped the adjacent photo
of my bike. With the days still relatively short in early February,
this experience was my warning to start at day break for future rides.
||My picture taking on my first day wasn't the greatest,
similar to my riding shape. I really should have taken more pictures of this
quaint and historic town of Julian! I did, however, capture the Victorian
style bed of the Julian B&B (www.JulianHotel.com)
on Main Street. Most nights, I stayed
at cheap motels, but this would be an instance where
I had no other option but to stay at this B&B.
I was given a greatly reduced rate which was nice, and I do recommend this place
for romantic getaways.
Later in the evening, Jennifer drove from San Diego to meet
and have dinner with me. I was totally exhausted, but my heart
was very exhilerated with the notion that I was
actually doing this dream ... a dream I talked about doing for at least five years.
Jen and I had a great time at Romano's
Italian Restaurant (www.RomanosJulian.com)
and I devoured their huge Italian meatball sandwich! :p)
||This is the only photo in this entire trip report that was not
taken on the exact day. It's a photo of myself with Krista and Jennifer on March 20, 2008
after I finished my trip. (I flew back to San Diego to drive my car home to Colorado).
SPECIAL THANKS to my amazing "San Diego girls" in Krista (center) for generously allowing me to
keep my car in front of her home and Jennifer (right - she doesn't like photos of herself)
for being an emergency contact
for the duration of my ride in California, supporter and coach for this trip.
While I don't think I could ever live in a huge city, I have a lot of sentimental
attachment to San Diego. Of course, it was the launching area for my bike trip, but I
also had some really nice times during my first visit to the city in 2007.
You can see some of my San Diego pages here:
Ocean Beach Fishing Pier,
San Diego Zoo,
Next Day #2
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