The comments, cards and letters just keep on flooding in to buff3ysbicycling blog and this blog now runs the serious risk of eclipsing the bulk of those purported ‘adventure’ cycling blogs out there in cyberland. I fear that the narcissistic pleasure that goes along with my new found notoriety as a hardcore cycling adventurer may get the better of me on occasion but I here declare that I will do all that I can to contain my ever-expanding ego as the miles rack up and my global reputation for cycling daring-do balloons correspondingly.
Its been a busy time on the hardcore adventure cycling road since San Francisco and this posting finds your weary yet satisfied correspondent on the southern border of The US of A and at the end of the Canada/USA road. San Diego at last! It’s a long way South still to go till this cyclin’s done but it soothes the soul to stop, reassess and savour the moment of a minor victory along the way. It is now four months and 7,400 km since my first tentative pedal out of Deadhorse Alaska in late July yet it is sobering to think that San Diego is about a quarter of the total journey to the bottom of South America.
I have to note here for the record that the good people of the west coast states of the USA have been nothing but kind, helpful, polite and cool. The coastline has been a dramatic and magnificent backdrop to my incredible exploits and feats of daring-do and although it is satisfying to be finished with Alaska, Canada and the lower 48, I will miss this place and no doubt be back before too long. On-on to Mexico [after a brief respite, including a cultural study trip to Vegas! (by plane this time)].
22nd November (Santa Barbara – North of Zuma Beach) (60 miles)
Managed to get out of bed after the Blue Man Group night and on the road out of Santa Barbara. Met cycling Andy (UK) on the road and we camped just north of Zuma Beach in the state Camp site there. A quick hit of bourbon for breakfast and am on the road again.
23rd November (Zuma – Hermosa) (40 miles)
The boys in the buff3ysbicyclingblog lab have come up with yet another incredible innovation. This time it is the technique for ensuring that you don’t get your bike stolen during the ride through LA. Take the thing into the public toilet with you. So simple yet so very effective! Might raise an eyebrow or two but this is much preferable to having some low-life scamper off with your bike. Zipped through Malibu (which only has septic tanks I’m told!) and Santa Monica (which has very nice plumbing). Its warmer south of SB so can show off the increasingly sexy cycling legs.
Venice Beach had all of the mandatory professional freaks. Great beach services where you can stock up on your medical grade pot and get botoxed on the beach in one hit (so to speak).
There. This is for all those happy snappers frantically clicking away at the Californian coast line. We here at Buff3ysbicyclingblog can give it a bit of silhouette action as well. I spent the night at Hermosa Beach, a bit south of Venice Beach. None of the nightmare scenarios of LA traffic have eventuated, mostly due to the Thanksgiving weekend.
24th November (Hermosa Beach LA – San Clemente (60 miles)
Hard to know where to start with ‘Navajo Dave’. It would be too easy to fob him off as another cycling space cadet on the road in southern California. He did have a very passable patter in new age cycling stoned philosophy and an interesting theory that we could somehow travel back in time by pedaling backwards. Fascinating. In his defense he gave me a bottle of water.
25th November (San Clemente – San Diego) (70 miles)
Arrival in San Diego:
San Diego marks the end of the USA ride and in a way the end of the first chunk of the journey. Next will be Mexico, Central America with South American thereafter.
Just north of SD I met Irish Ian once more and we cycled the last leg into town together. It has to be noted that on arrival in San Diego we did ask a guy to take our photo to record the moment of USA cycling victory for posterity …..and he refused. It was clear that this was because he felt that Ian looked more than a little bit tatty and bum-like and rightly suspected that Ian might be after money. Happily he then focused on your more classically attired humble correspondent, the mistake appreciated and the photo taken.