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June 14, 2006

The Ride's the Thing

Over a decade ago I took to riding my bike for more than just commuting to and from work, and shopping.

One of my sisters encouraged this by suggesting I ride to, and around, Bonelli Park in San Dimas, CA.

I learned of  books by the prolific Don and Sharon Brundige:

Bicycle Rides: Los Angeles County - 4th ed. pub. in 2000.

Bicycle Rides: Orange County - 5th ed. pub. in 2001.

Bicycle Rides: San Diego and Imperial Counties - 2nd Ed. pub. in 1997.

Bicycle Rides: Inland Empire - Revised Ed. pub. in 1994.

Bicycle Rides: Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties - 2nd ed. pub. in 1998.

These inspired me to venture even further out, camera in hand.

In the process I also learned to love the Thomas Guide Map Books. ;-D

I took rides in  LA, San Bernardino, Riverside, and Orange County between 1992 and 2002, and have several photo albums to show for the adventures.

I set a project for myself:

Using some of the routes by the Brundiges as a guide, I then used the Thomas Guide Map Books to expand on many of those rides by adding streets, and changing the routes to suit my interest, and whim, and also keeping in mind how I could get to the starting point by bus, or train, and home again the same way from the end point ( These were not round trips ).

I then got the notion to pour over those Thomas Guides to create routes of my own, and these compose the majority of my collection of routes!

I had this naive notion that I'd be able ride far more often than I ended up doing.

Life has a way of getting in the way of what one hopes to accomplish in life, sometimes leading you down paths you never dream you will take.

In Jan. 2003 I began this Blog, and in the following Spring moved to the OC.

While I have written about bike rides taken in the last 5 years, those long, glorious, adventures have been infrequent, due to the things going on in my life.

Therefore I've come to a decision:

Why wait to share all those rides?

I've got a 10 day vacation coming next month, and so I'm using part of it to kick start my return to the longer rides I've chronicled by taking the train, and riding outside the OC, a couple of times. ;-D

I've got over 85 rides ( Distances and terrain, mostly unknown by me ), in several counties, in a notebook waiting for me to ride them before writing about them on the Dude.

Problem is that they have been languishing for a decade!

I am announcing the following initiative:

To gradually post the routes ( After turning them into optional round trips in some cases, and seeing if there is a need to update them further. ), with bus, train, and car directions, and parking suggestions, and encourage readers to take the rides, and come back and leave comments on them.

If, and when, I actually do a ride myself, then I will add an UPDATE to the post with one of my pattented Ride Essays, and maybe add pictures, too.

Speaking of pictures... now that I've got a digital camera, I think I should try to return to all the rides I've written on before, here, and maybe add some pictures. ;-D

MY ARCHIVES ARE AS FOLLOWS:

Riding Los Angeles County.

Riding Orange County.

Riding Riverside County.

Riding San Bernardino County.

Riding San Diego County.

Riding Santa Barbara County.

Riding Ventura County.

If anyone has suggestions for routes that I should explore and write about, send me an e-mail, and let me know.

BTW, I have NOT forgotten the swag I brought home from my trip to the LA Times Travel Show in Jan. 2005. ;-D

***UPDATE - 6/16***

I've divided the routes by county:

LA COUNTY = 63

ORANGE COUNTY = 8

SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY = 5

SAN BERNARDINO/RIVERSIDE = 11

I also have 7 old LA WHEEMEN routes, and 3 I don't know who they are from.

Maybe I'll add to, and embellish, those as well, eventually.

*** END UPDATE***

June 14, 2006 in The Opinionated DUDE | Permalink

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