For those who want to know more about the joys of road cycling on the Peninsula, look no further than the Western Wheelers Bicycle Club. One of the larger cycling clubs in the Bay Area (established in 1983), they offer an extensive calendar of weekly rides, with as many as five a day. This week, I opted to join their Tuesday morning jaunt that leaves Sunnyvale with a strict 11 a.m. starting time.
For a weekday afternoon, I was surprised/thrilled at the turnout of some 40-plus riders milling about at an unassuming starting point in the Westmoor Village Shopping Center. As soon as the 11 a.m. departure struck, I set out with the A group down Fremont Avenue. As we headed for the Los Altos Hills, the pace quickened (the ride accommodates riders of all levels, generally splitting into five groups). It’s always great to have someone’s wheel to follow on a new ride, and I quickly found myself wrapped up in a number of interesting conversations with my fellows, at least until we started hitting the steeper roads to the west.
The club offers some alternate routes depending on rider ability and each Tuesday morning ride of the month is a bit different. The route described below is for the first Tuesday.
How to Get There:
Westmoor Village Shopping Center in Sunnyvale, located at the intersection of Fremont Avenue and South Mary. Exit on Hwy. 85 at Fremont Avenue and head south for about three-quarters of a mile.
Step by Step Route:
- Right on Fremont 2 miles
- Continue on Foothill Expressway 2.4 miles
- Left on Main
- Continue on Burke 0.5 miles
- Right on Chapin 0.2 miles
- Left on Robleda and go under Hwy. 280 0.8 miles
- Right on Elena 1.4 miles (it gets to 10% here)
- Left on Natoma 0.6 miles
- Right on Black Mountain 0.5 miles
- Continue on Altamont 0.5 miles (2nd highest point on the ride at 718 feet)
- Right on Page Mill 1.9 miles
- Left on Arastradero 2 miles
- Left on Alpine 1.1 miles
- Right on Portola 1.1 miles
- Right on Westridge 0.5 miles
- Right on Cervantes 1.6 (2nd highest point on the ride at 773 feet)
- Right on Westridge Dr. 0.8 miles (steep descent at 18%)
- Left on Alpine 2.4 miles
- Right on Junipero Serra 3.7 miles
- Continue on Foothill 4.2 miles
- Left (with care)onto Fremont (at Miramonte Ave. 2 miles
- End Westmoor Shopping Center at South Mary
I can honestly say that it was well worth my time to get to know this part of the Peninsula and I hope to find an excuse to ride here again soon.
For dates and times, be sure to check out the Western Wheelers Ride calendar.
Also, the Wheelers also host the 2015 Sequoia Century which takes place on Sunday, May 31. There are four route options, which range from 55 to 120 miles with elevation gains that go from 4,000 feet to 10,000 feet.
Map of the Western Wheelers Tuesday morning ride in the Los Altos Hills.