At the end of September, we had the pleasure of escorting over fifty cyclists from Folsom to San Francisco on the incredibly scenic California Dream Ride. From the warm, wine-ready valleys of Napa and Sonoma to the sweeping, stunning vistas of the Pacific in Marin and San Francisco, this was a ride to remember.
Cooler Temperatures and Dramatic Vistas
Cycling out of Santa Rosa with cooler temperatures (thankfully) in the forecast, we passed by miles of apple groves in the famed Russian River region. The morning began with some big climbs as we pushed our way further west towards the Pacific. This was our most dramatic day in terms of California’s diversity, both in temperature and topography.
Trading the heat of the valley for the fog-tinged breezes of the Pacific, we hit scenic Highway 1 and traced the eastern edge of Tomales Bay to Point Reyes. From there, our group headed east along the Cross Marin Trail, traversing through coastal oaks to stately redwoods. One long last climb before arriving in Corte Madera had our Gazelle riders extra grateful for our pedal-assist motors.
This article is reposted from Gazelle Bikes. Gazelle joined the 2019 Dream Ride from Folsom to San Francisco.
I just finished riding 280 miles on my bicycle with over 40 other people. It was an amazing experience and one of the most physically challenging things I have ever done. I loved it! One of the reasons I enjoy cycling, aside from the physical benefits and being outside, is how quickly it creates community.
When you ride with people, there is an ethos of looking out for one another’s safety--pointing out hazards in the roads or cars, sharing snacks if someone needs one, and even assisting in fixing flats or other minor repairs. In really good group rides, they are “no drop”--meaning everyone will wait for you at a point down the road--so it’s easy for new people get involved and ride along. It’s nice to know people will be there if you get behind. It both highlights and honors the differences between people. Biologically, I believe people do like being together in groups. It feels much safer than being on your own.
I wasn’t the youngest person on the ride or the oldest but was inspired by all the other riders. One who is living with active cancer--a recurrence after 22 years. Another, had multiple autoimmune issues and was able to do a lot of the riding despite intense chronic pain. I rode with 75 and 80 year olds who held their own well. And there were, of course, exceptional riders--fast and fit--who were still kind and supportive to everyone else. To say we had created our own community pretty quickly and certainly by the end of five days of riding together is an understatement.
A core/foundational structure of LBCA has always been to create community--to invite people into our healing space and see how they fit. Sometimes, it’s not a good one and people move on but more often than not, there is a great sense of belonging that animates what we do every day. In my mind, it is “no drop,” we are here waiting for you in whatever state you show up. We are here to assist and help.
Last month we celebrated our sixth year anniversary, as we move into our seventh year of practice. I am grateful for this inspiring community that gathers and disperses every day, hour by hour.
Many thanks to you who donated to support my ride for the California Bicycle Coalition. I raised $1,265.00 from your contributions! They will be doing it again next year and this time the route will be from Santa Barbara to Oceanside. Perhaps, some of you will join us? If you’d like to see pictures of the full ride, you can click here.
This article originally appeared on http://www.longbeachcommunityacupuncture.com
The 2018 Dream Ride has come and gone, but we’re still enjoying the post ride buzz. Didn’t snag a spot this year? Don’t fret: Registration today for the next Dream Ride!! We hope you can join us for another year of unforgettable bicycling.
Here's a recap of 2018:
This year, we were blessed with the best weather imaginable. Palm trees lined the horizon and the coastline followed us the entire route. We overnighted in six beautiful and unique cities: Santa Barbara, Santa Paula, Marina del Rey, Long Beach, San Clemente and San Diego. There were views you could never see from inside a car!
Going into our fifth Dream Ride, we were excited to have a great group of new and repeat riders. Our riders were full of energy and enthusiasm. Some chose to form challenge groups – taking on higher altitudes and more distances. Others took their time enjoying the delicious snacks and breathtaking views at a leisurely pace. No matter the speed, we all felt like a family.
Breathtaking views, semi-luxurious accommodations, and a truly worthwhile cause—this year we raised over $130,000 to support better bicycling and thriving communities across the Golden State. One of our Dream Riders, Lee Larsen, chronicled her journey on social media every day and raised an additional $1900 during the ride!
A Little Extra Zip from Gazelle Bikes
Special thanks to our generous sponsor, Gazelle Bikes, for supplying e-bikes for riders to try out or to use for the entire ride. We had the company of Gabe and Paul from Gazelle to charge batteries, adjust seats, and change pedals. They had an assortment of bikes, from speedy commuters to stylish cruisers. We were truly spoiled!
Want more Dream Ride photos? Photographer Allan Crawford captured some great moments here.
We hope you enjoyed this recap!