By WharfedaleBex

Santa Cruzing

It's fair to say we've had a bit of a buffeting today but the route has been spectacular.

We drove up to the northeast, starting our ride from Santa Cruz. Facing a stiff headwind first, the 'flat road where you'll be able to pick up some speed' never really materialised. It wasn't long before we were heading into the mountains, though, on a beautiful and quiet winding road with ever more stunning views. The switchbacks meant we were never in a strong gale for long but occasionally meant hanging onto your bike as we turned into the corners.

The cool air, for now, still with sunshine, made for delightful cycling temperatures as we made our way up through a valley bursting with green. The variety of scenery on each ride we've been on has been wonderful. 

After a couple of hours trundling, we were enjoying winding across a ridge (blipped (on the right)) but not before we'd battened down the hatches with every layer we had as we entered cloud level. A surprise pit stop before the last ascent was most welcome, as was our timing. We were lucky to have an almost traffic free ascent and here at the top, as we left the cafe, were about forty motorbikers that had come up our way. The way down was busy as it's a well-known tourist drive and very possibly popular with locals (and it's Sunday!) too. Everyone was considerate though and it wasn't long before we were heading down into an urban area after one last stop at a beautiful mirador.

Cafe, drive home and pizza in-house for tea. We've given up on eating out, it's been rubbish.

For the first time in a long time, my body feels like it's playing. Just a few knots in my left leg which seem to be on their way out. Every day I've rollered, elastic banded and stretched. Despite feeling like we've worked, we've not done great distances, high speeds nor massive ascents and we've chilled out plenty. It's been a perfect combination and we still have one last day on wheels to enjoy.

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