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9 December 2017 4/C/72 – 2,700 feet climbing – Recce! BART Pleasanton and Around Morgan Territory

  • 12 Dec 2017 11:02 AM
    Message # 5625640
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    9 December 2017

    4/C/72 – 2,700 feet climbing – Recce! BART Pleasanton and Around Morgan Territory

    This route took advantage of the extended start point in Livermore and some new roads, without the need to resort to carpooling.

    Verdict

    Altogether, this route is a nice change from the usual Morgan Territory ride, increasing the overall distance and offering new vistas of Mount Diablo and Morgan Territory from the North.  Marsh Creek Road and Camino Diablo lead through scenic rolling hills and numerous horse farms, with a general downhill gradient.  However, Vasco Road, Miles 46-57, is a real grind and demands some good bike handling skills on a shoulder strewn with debris and close to fast-moving traffic.

    Report

    Rob Jankowski joined me at Kaiser and we proceeded to the Fruitvale BART to take the 0824 train to the Dublin/Pleasanton station.  On the Iron Horse Trail, we diverted to Danville Boulevard at Mile 10, since there were too many walkers on the path.  The weather was generally clear and sunny, only a light jacket was required, though Rob rode without arm warmers most of the day.

    We made very good time, attributable to the few rest stops I am known to make for quick refueling and other pressing matters.  Rob also had a few phone calls to field, so it appears phone reception out there was not an issue.  Hanging a left at the fork, where we normally go right and up Morgan Territory, the road allowed some great speed development.  Once on Camino Diablo, traffic was reduced, though it was not a real issue on Marsh Creek.

    Vasco Road, Miles 46-59, was not as enjoyable.  We had to carefully negotiate the shoulder and rumble strip among the gravel and debris found there.  One could equate this road to Highway 37, except it tilts upward and displays some huge wind turbines on the higher slopes.  We were relieved to have traversed this section without flats or mechanicals, once we saw Livermore in the valley below.  

    Rob and I found our way through Livermore, partially on Arroyo Mocho Trail.  We lost about 3 minutes on a wrong turn there, but reached the BART station at 1415 hours, way ahead of the scheduled pace.

    Conclusions

    Because of the induced stress on Vasco Road and since no alternative road exists to avoid it, the better option is go over Morgan Territory and not around it.  Nevertheless, for those adventurous and hardy enough, this ride is a nice alternative to the usual fare.

    --Ralph

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