Sunday, June 24, 2012

Biking Golden Gate Style

I feel like since biking has officially become an obsession in my life (oh, haven't younoticed?), I've been developing a "Bike Bucket List: or Things I want to do on a bike before I kick the bucket." I have started collecting bike experiences to do in my lifetime like a bike tour of the British Isles, completing a century ride, biking famous landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge, and many others.

A couple weekends ago, on a girls' trip to San Francisco, my friends and I were able to check one of those off the list: Biking the Golden Gate Bridge.

There are a lot of bike companies that want tourists to have the "Bike the Bridge" experience. So we just went with the first one we came across.

Bike gang

With our bikes rented, we set off for the bridge. I'll tell you what, I can definitely appreciate my bicycles after riding on the rickety-dickety bike rental. Throughout the whole ride I kept thinking, I wish I was on Betty, she would rock this. Oh well, when on vacation, you make do with what you have.

On the street

To get to the bridge, you can take a bike path along the shore. The ocean and the sky were both clear and blue. We could't have picked a better day to be on bikes with your girlfriends.

Perfect backdrop
On the way to the bridge

Scenic is just an understatement.

Golden Gate Bridge

And what is biking in San Francisco without fighting your way up some killer hills. But we survived and eventually got to the bridge. The one interesting thing is that on the bridge, bikes and pedestrians cross on the same piece of pavement.  Even with clear markings that state bikes on the left, pedestrians on the right, you spend a lot of your time dodging wandering and unaware pedestrians instead of just relaxing and enjoying your surroundings.

Jaimi and me on bridge
Riding the bridge

Regardless, I still managed a little awe and wonder while on the bridge. 

On the bridge
Mack, Kelly and Jaimi
Us on the bridge
Jaimi cruisin'

After crossing, we coasted downhill into Sausalito, a charming seaside town in which we rewarded ourselves with ice cream. 

Ice Cream
The gang

But as things tend to do, it was time for our bike ride to come to an end. So it was back to San Francisco on the ferry. But even as we were heading back, I already knew it would be a day to remember for a long time.

Oh, and amusing side note: Maybe during our ride we came upon a group of about 100 cyclists. And maybe, just maybe, they were all BUCK NAKED. While their invitation to join them was very warm and thoughtful, I don't think biking naked in public will ever quite make my Bike Bucket List.


Jodi said...

Looks amazing! Wow about the naked cyclists... hope they used plenty of sunscreen.

I usually feel like that about rental cars -- I always cheap out and rent compacts that end up seeming rickety, underpowered, and slightly dangerous.

my hyggelig said...

ahhhh....home sweet home. lucky you! You can actually bike on the ocean side of the bridge on weekends - were you there on a weekday? I only biked on the 'tourist'/bay side of the bridge on weekdays when I biked in to work in SOMA from Mill Valley. I know EXACTLY where you were - how great for you!! Also, next time you are there you can rent a Public @ Streets of San Francisco Bike Tours, not as convenient but less rickety hopefully! And naked cyclists - of course, I wouldn't expect anything less. :)

Windybrook Spinner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Windybrook Spinner said...

I can't spell. Meant to post "Sounds delightful!"

KJ@letsgoflyakite said...

Yeah for the golden gate and what a great way to see it, Sausalito is such a special place. Love your photos. Safe travels!

Steph said...

My BIL biked the bridge when he was in SF a few years ago. it looks like such a fun trip. Sounds like you came across part of the "World Naked Bike Ride Day" - an effort to make people see the vulnerability of cyclists and make them aware of bicycles on the streets. We like to arrange our WWKIP day so that we get to see our local nudie bikers. It makes for lots of frivolity.

anniebikes said...

I'm so glad for you that you enjoyed friendship and an amaxing bike ride.

Carolyn said...

Such a gorgeous day! And that looks like so much fun (I may be just a tad bit jealous... :)

ali said...

no pictures of the naked cyclists??

Jon and I totally want to do that someday (clothed of course)

Pamela Morrell said...

I have always wanted to do that, you've inspired me. There's really not much excuse considering I only live 3 hrs from SF.

Jacey said...

I love this, Kara! A bikebucketlist sounds awesome. On my last San Fran trip, we visited Sausalito. It's such a cute little town!

Ridonkulus said...

naked bike ride sounds awkward. i loved biking on the brooklyn bridge. hope to do golden gate on my next visit!

caknitter said...

Ohemgeee! Naked bikers?!?! Different strokes...
Pictures are awesome. :-)

Anonymous said...

It looks like you had a spectacular time. San Francisco is a beautiful city, but I wondered if many people rode bikes there. Now I know you sure can! Did you go to Alcatraz?

Dottie said...

That is a dream ride! How fun to enjoy the experience with your friends.

Necia said...

Hi Kara,

What a blast from the past! How are you and your sister? It's great to see how into cycling you are, as I'm afraid I've fallen deep myself. Im compiling my own little cycle related bucket list as well! Anyway, it was great "catching" back up! Cycle/Knit on!