Sunday, November 29, 2009
Hermosa beach to Dana Point, CA. Great Hosts and a ride through the big city.
Day 44 62 Miles
This morning, Steve and Linda made a great pancake breakfast for us with fresh squeezed orange juice, fresh ground coffee, and some great blackberry topping. After we ate breakfast Steve and Linda let Dani and I take out their awesome Co-motion tandem for a spin. We think we are going to have to get a tandem for our next tour. They are just so much fun.
We got all packed up and Steve and Linda rode with us to the grocery store and then to In n Out burger for lunch. I have wanted Dani to try In n Out since we have gotten to California, so this was a big deal. If you don't know what In n Out burger is, it is a small fast food chain in mostly California that has great burgers and fries and shakes. That is all they serve. They have a secret menu, so you have to be in the know a little bit to be able to order your burger or fries with special fixings on them. I only know Animal style which gets you sautéed onions, cheese and thousand island dressing. Very good. Dani and I had burgers with four (yes four) meat patties and four slices of cheese (called 4 by 4) and we had them Animal Style. We each had an order of fries and each had a shake. It was so yummy, but we got so full.
After lunch we said our goodbyes to Steve and Linda. We can't thank them enough for all of their great advice and especially for such a nice place to stay. Their friends just invited us right in and fed us a great supper. We were even telling Steve and Linda about how we had been looking for a small cutting board for weeks. They responded by offering us a very nice perfectly sized bamboo cutting board from right off of their shelf. We couldn't believe it. They are so nice! Thank you Steve and Linda!
After we left In N Out, we were running a bit late, but we figured we would be alright. We rode through L.A. and it was much easier than we had ever imagined. Almost all of the riding was on bike paths. Some of it was along the L.A. river which is now nothing more than a concrete aqueduct with a trickle of water in it. I could just picture Arnold Schwarzenegger in Terminator riding the motorcycle with the sawed off shot gun flying down the aqueduct trying to escape from T-1000.
We had to ride a few roads, but mostly we were on the beach going down the bike paths with all of the people walking dogs and roller blading. The path ended in Newport Beach. Here we got back on the Pacific Coast highway for the first time since Malibu about 80 miles before. L.A. is huge! We were making good time, but we were starting to realize that we would probably have to ride in the dark to get to Dana Point and Doheny State Park.
Around Laguna Beach a cyclist out on a Sunday ride named Tom rode with us and asked about or trip. He was genuinely concerned with our safety and rode with us so he could guide us through Laguna Beach. He said the Pacific Coast Highway gets very busy their, and the city refuses to change the bike route through town. The city is worried that if they change the bike route, if any cyclist gets hurt or hit by cars, they could be held responsible and sued. So instead they keep the bike route on a six lane highway with no shoulders. Luckily Tom guided us through all of the town right to the very end. It is so nice that people like Tom are concerned enough to help us out. We would have never known about any alternate way through town, but he showed us much calmer streets with bike lanes and gave us a little tour of the town. Laguna Beach seems very nice.
We arrived in the City of Dana Point a bit after dark, and found Doheny State Beach. We went to the campground, but we could not find the entrance station to pay for our site. After looking for it for almost a half hour we gave up and just set our tent up in one of the sites. We had some supper and headed for bed after a very long day of riding.