Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Half Way to Fremont

On my occasional bayside rides to Mountain View, the Dumbarton Bridge has always beckoned, promising to up my mundane ride to work into something more like an adventure.

This morning I decided to make a practice run, and went to the top and back. It was not as hard as I expected. It's a long climb, but not very steep. Lately I've been trying to keep my bike in it's top gear (better workout), and I was surprised that I didn't have to break my self-imposed no-downshifting moratorium.

The bridge has a pretty decent bike lane, divided from traffic by a low concrete wall. It's a pretty good view at the top--you can see all the way from downtown SF to downtown SJ. I made a 360° photostitched panorama:

(Click for full size image)

The current Hwy 84 birdge is neither the first nor the only Dumbarton crossing. Off to the south you can see a railway bridge, with a central swing span, out of service since the 80's but hopefully someday to serve a new Dumbarton Commuter Rail Corridor. The Hetch-Hetchy pipeline also crosses the bay here, carried almost all the way across on bridges, then diving under the floor of the bay to cross the very middle.

Immediately adjacent to each end of the current highway bridge are stub ends of a earlier bridge, which was low and level and had a moveable span in the middle like the railway bridge. They look as though they were open as fishing piers once, but seem to be gated off now. Here's the western stub.

As I came back down the bridge, another biker staring up gave me a big smile. I think I'm passing some kind of threshold into hard-core-dom here.

As I continued my usual bayside route to Mountain View, it started to rain. In July? Whatever.

Local kids seem to have found some interesting alternative routes.

Guess I won't be quite that adventureous!

Along the Stevens Creek trail, I found a few blackberries, which were appreciated. I made sure to keep the bike away from the thorns this time.

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