After a delightful breakfast with college friend Jack Yellin in Westchester, Don drove me back to Hermosa Beach to continue my journey.
I was immediately in Redondo Beach, along CA 1, before turning east through Torrance and Carson, definitely urban biking. Even though it was after 9 am, there was plenty of traffic and stop lights for the next 15 miles. I passed hospitals, small shops, vegetable fields, and oil refineries along the route. Sometimes there was a bike lane, other times just a wide enough street for 2 cars traveling, one car parked and me. I was only honked at once when I was forced to take the lane; even the trucks around the refineries gave me a wide berth.
Eventually, I crossed the Los Angeles River and joined the bike path. That too was a different scene: a good number of homeless hovels, and few vagrants, and not many bikers. I just kept moving without any incident.
The Los Angeles River bike path took me to the Long Beach Shoreline bike path. I enjoyed the route around Shoreline Village, though it was quiet, in contrast to the beach activity I experienced yesterday.
I ate lunch in the Belmont Village area south of Long Beach then continued along San Pedro Bay before crossing Alamitos Bay, and briefly meeting up with Don in Naples. Crossing the San Gabriel River, I was cycling on CA 1 until the cues (Ride with GPS) took me onto the Huntington Beach bike trail. This was a path parallel to CA 1 along the oceanfront, then through the parking lots of Bolsa Chica State Beach and Huntington Beach State Park, close to 10 miles off the busy road. In Newport Beach, I rejoined CA 1 with a bike lane and signs indicating that it was acceptable to ride on the sidewalks. I was briefly tempted to dolly-gag to Balboa Island where we had lived for 4 months when I was in 8th grade, but decided that traffic would only be increasing, as was the heat, so I continued on.
A local rider helped me detour around the congestion of Corona Del Mar, Don brought me Starbuck’s lemonade and tea and I finished along CA 1 into Laguna Beach, even climbing up the hill to our hosts, Jan & Ken Kaplan. Jan was my college roommate and their home above Laguna Beach is always a special treat for us land-locked Midwesterners.
The temperature was close to 90 degrees this afternoon, but the sea breezes kept me cool, and I concentrated on staying hydrated. Cooled off after my ride with another ocean plunge.
Garmin: 51.37 miles, 11.84 mph, 1683.1 ascent