Roger texted me on a Wednesday night to see if I wanted to go bike camping. Unfortunately, my hybrid (which needs work) wasn't going to fly, since it doesn't have a rack and I don't think one can be mounted on it. That left me two days to find a bike. Finally, Friday night I found a bike shop with a bike I liked (around 6pm, when the shop closed at 7); they installed the rack and pannier and all that, and I stopped over for Eritrean food while they set it up and tuned it.
That left packing Saturday morning, which was a challenge. I should have gotten two panniers just for balance, but I was worried about both spending too much and packing too much. I did come up with a good checklist so I didn't bring too much (and I still forgot some things, like a pillow and silverware), but being off-balance made the trip a lot more difficult.
I got to the BART about a half hour before Roger and his friend Kevin, so I posted up. I had most of my camping gear in the pannier, but I had to put my tent in my Sterling rope bag that's strapped to the top rack. I hung my camera on the right side, but I think that kept turning the camera on because the battery died at our first stop.
Finally, Roger and Kevin showed up. My bike was the smallest of the lot, with Roger bringing a mountain bike and Kevin's bike having large, knobby tyres.
Photo from Kevin
We started the ride about 11:15 Saturday morning, taking the BART to Millbrae. The first set of hills was killer, and I ended up having to walk a few sections. Trying to ride that slowly with a wobbly bike just proved to be too much and I needed to just get to the top of the hill. We eventually got to our first stop around 2 PM: the Upper Crystal Springs reservoir. There was much moon cheese, almonds, and baobites to be had.
We then biked along a sketchy section of CA-92, where I had to walk a few sections again. The road was narrow and hard to ride. On the downhills, though, I was a missile, easily passing the other two. We got to a stopping point where I set my bike down and managed to stab myself pretty good in the foot. I'm still not sure whether it was the pedal or a gear tooth that got me, but it bled quite a bit. Fortunately, I had a first aid kit and could slap a bandage over it; the big concern was my sock sticking to the cut.
We ended up getting to the camp site about 3ish. We were pretty close to the beach.
We set up our tents, and I changed out into pants and a clean shirt so we could go into town for dinner; we also picked up a fourth person who was sharing our campsite.
Once in town, we found burgers and beer, and it was glorious. While we were waiting, someone ran their Explorer into a building.
Before calling it a night, Roger and I stopped over at the beach. I was an idiot and got my shoes soaked, but it was a cool view. You can see the lights of two ships in the distance.
I had a single instant coffee packet, which was fortunately enough for me. I forgot a coffee cup, so I drank it straight from the Jetboil.
We set out the next morning up through Pacifica with a few rest stops. The wind coming up to Devil's Slide was murderous --- almost got knocked over a few times.
It was a really clear day, with the Farallons visible on the horizon. Unfortunately, none of my photos of them came out. This is where not having the X-Pro 2 really hurt.
We stopped up again in Pacifica, passing by Moonraker. This is one of my favourite food trucks; Ryan and I tried to go to the food truck spot in SF on Monday, but the truck had relocated to Spark Social, apparently.
Finally, we got up through some other hills and downhill or mostly flat shot into the Outer Sunset.
We stopped at the Pizza Place on Noriega; pizza and Diet Coke never tasted so good! I was pretty dehydrated, so I skipped on beer.
We ended the trip by riding through Golden Gate Park and ended up at Taqueria Cancun for burritos to go. I took the BART back to West Oakland, and from there, home.
Fun trip, and now I'm hooked on bike camping. This weekend is a down weekend before the Snow Mountain East trip, for which I'll have more batteries.