Riding from San Francisco across the Headlands
For months I had been planning this ride with eager anticipation.
But with the Golden Gate Bridge closures, then rain storms, and having other places to go,
I had never ridden this far north starting from home.
But today was the day, to cross the Marin Headlands, all three ridges, to Muir Beach, south to north and back.
The plan was to take Conzelman to the Coastal Trail,
cross Wolf Ridge along the Miwok/Old Springs trail to Tennessee Valley, and finally take the Coastal/Coyote Ridge Trail
over Coyote Ridge to Muir Beach.
Getting back I planned to return up the Coastal Trail to the ridgeline, then
descend back into Tennessee Valley along the Miwok Trail, cross Wolf Ridge along the Marincello/Bobcat Trail, then
take the tunnel home.
Click to expand
Beyond the Golden Gate, beyond Wolf Ridge, here is a little grassy promontory which offers some nice relief
after the fairly steep burn from Tennessee Valley. The second pic shows the backside of Hill 88, the flat area just
right of midline. If you look closely, the tall radar tower is at the left third of the flat area. A light mist is
starting to move in.
Climbing over coyote ridge, here is my first glimpse at Muir Beach, my passion... my obsession.
That was a quick and very steep ride down the coastal trail. Here's a couple more shots of Muir Beach. I'm
about spent... that was fun but I don't think I have much energy left.
How far is it to push back home? Is there a bus to San Francisco? Can anybody here give me a ride?
...I guess not. This is a shot of Pirates cove about halfway up the Coastal Trail.
Whose dumb idea was this to ride all the way out to Muir Beach anyway?
I think I'll just rest here for an hour or so. Oh yeah, clock is ticking... the Superbowl
kickoff is at 3:00 and it's already 1:30.
What a miserable 1000 foot climb. It wasn't pretty folks... it was a real granny fest.
Kind hikers cheered me on. But I rode the whole way, without pushing (much).
This is looking into Tennessee Valley, from the top of the Miwok Trail as it crosses Coyote Ridge.
The fun wasn't over either... just beyond that fence is insane downhill, so eroded by the latest series of rain storms
it looks like a miniature version of the snake river.
Crossing Wolf Ridge from Tennessee Valley, somebody had cleaned up the Marincello trail
so it wasn't too bad, I even managed to pass some people. Usually I think of the Bobcat trail as kind of boring but
I really bombed down it this time to get home by 3:00 and that was pretty fun.
This shot is at the bottom of the Bobcat Trail in Rodeo Valley. From here it was
back to the tunnel, across the Golden Gate, down Lincoln Boulevard and back home.
Let me just say, for all those with fair skin, the Neutragena 45 sunblock cream that I tried today was like staying
indoors. I put it all over my face and neck, and lubriderm skin moisturizer with SPF 15 on my forehead because it
doesn't sting my eyes.
If you have any dissatisfaction with your current sunblock regimen, give that a try.
I got a sunburn last year when I used Coppertone Sport 30 for the first and last time.
That stuff is a joke. For deodorant, Right Gaurd Extreme Sport kicks butt though, if you don't mind the aluminum...
Anyway... what a good workout, and made it home just in time for kick off!
Kinda wish I got better pics of the Pacific Coast, but I'll save that for another exhibit.
Just sitting here downloading the pictures from the camera I had three spasms in my ham strings.
I think I found my new weekend exercise run!
(b. February 3, 2002; Superbowl Sunday)
Back to top.
Okay, pardon my indulgence...
3.x miles: Home to the Golden Gate Bridge
2.0 miles: Across the Golden Gate Bridge
1.x miles: Golden Gate Bridge to the Coastal Trailhead
2.0 miles: Coastal Trail to Rodeo Valley Trail
1.6 miles: Miwok Trail to Old Springs
1.1 miles: Old Springs to Tennessee Valley
1.3 miles: Tennessee Valley road to the Coastal Trail
4.0 miles: Route to Muir beach via the Coastal Trail, then Coyote Ridge, then Coastal Trail again
2.0 miles: Back up the Coastal Trail to Coyote Ridge (painful just thinking about it)
0.9 miles: Crossover to the Miwok Trail
1.1 miles: Miwok Trail to the Tennessee Valley Parking Lot
1.7 miles: Up the Marincello Trail to the top of Wolf Ridge
3.3 miles: Down the Bobcat Trail to Rodeo Valley
3.x miles: Rodeo Valley, through the tunnel, to the Golden Gate Bridge
5.x miles: Back across the Golden Gate Bridge to home.
33 miles: Approximate trip distance.
250 feet: Baker Beach to the top of the Presidio
400 feet: Golden Gate Bridge to the Coastal Trailhead
600 feet: Rodeo Valley up the Miwok Trail to Old Springs
900 feet: Tennessee Valley to the Crest of Wolf Ridge
1000 feet: Muir Beach to the crest of Coyote Ridge
600 feet: Tennessee Valley to the top of Wolf Ridge along the Marincello Trail
100 feet: Big time burn back to the tunnel along Bunker drive
50 feet: Golden Gate Bridge to the top of the Presidio
3950 feet: Approximate elevation gain.
Average uphill grade: 3900/5280/16.5 = 4.5% (well, the uphill parts were more condensed than that).
Okay, average uphill grade on the uphill parts: 6.25% (pretty approximate, and skewed-- it's all the tunnels fault!).
7.34% if you take away the Tunnel. Hehe.
Trip duration: 5½ hours (including breaks-- left shortly after 9:30, got back just in time for the Superbowl).
Average Trip Speed: 6.0 MPH. Hey, it was my first time, and that includes
hanging out on the ridge tops, enjoying a snack on a picnic bench in Tennessee Valley, laying on the sand at Muir Beach,
and taking pictures...
(7 MPH while moving, allowing for a total break time of 45 minutes).