02 November 2014

Fall "Challenge Recovery" Ride with Traditions Galore

Jerome and I have not had much chance to ride together lately -- his travel schedule prevented him from joining recent Brevets, even those he signed up for.  So we wanted to get in one decent ride over the 3-day weekend.

He styled it a "challenge recovery" ride.  Recovery for me from 2 weekends in a row with Brevets, for him from too much travel and food and drink.  Challenge?  Not really consistent with recovery, I think, but the general idea was to not push the pace TOO hard, but go fairly long and do some climbing, at least.  I was looking for more recovery than challenge, having ridden almost 3000 kms over the past 2 months.
The Upper Tamagawa from near the top of Yoshino Kaido
We decided to honor the traditions of Positivo Espresso to the extent practical, and headed out a traditional route up the Tamagawa then the Asagawa toward Takao.  There was dog show going on along the Asagawa at a park in Hachioji.  Lots of dogs of all types, but mostly typical Japanese breeds.  And lots of older dog owners.

Ready for the show.
We stopped at the traditional 7-11 on Route 20 in front of Takao Station.  Then a climb up to Otarumi Pass, and down the far side and out to Uenohara.  The traffic was light, and no trucks on a Sunday in the middle of a 3-day weekend.

We stopped briefly at a new landmark on the way to Sagami-ko.  A used car lot (junk yard?) right next to the road named Rookie had an interesting looking superhero guarding the inventory.

At Uenohara, we stopped at the Daily Yamazaki along Route 33 (which no longer has benches in front since the renovation a few years ago ..., but is still a traditional stop), then took the "old road" -- deserted -- through wooded areas and to the base of Yamanashi Route 18.

As we reached the base of the climb to Tawa Pass, we turned left onto Steve T.'s alternate route around the pass.  We stopped at the steep field next to the road, glad to see it well-tended, the persimmons mostly removed from the trees in the adjacent orchard.  We followed tradition and looked to see if the little old lady was working in the field.  I did not have high hopes, as she has not been there the last few times I passed here.
Is the old lady at work in the field?  Can you see her?
We were delighted to find that she was, indeed, at work.  She looked up and saw us, and returned our wave.
How about now?
Further up Route 18, we made the traditional stop at the covered picnic table, rest room and gateball court just above 700 meters elevation on the climb to Tsuru Pass.

Jerome looks at the Shark and thinks "I want one"?
For there, we quickly made it to the top of Tsuru and down the North side of the hill to Okutama-ko.  Of course, we stopped at Yagyu-tei, better known as Watanabe-san's cafeteria.   Mrs. Watanabe was off, but her younger sister, Ms. Sato was there.

Just as we were heading into the restaurant a group of well-dressed, younger women cyclists rode by and looked at the much fancier restaurant/coffee shop down the block, next to the lake.  But there was a line outside (!), so they turned around and came back up the block and into Yagyu-tei.  It was the women's only Rapha Tokyo Club ride.  No wonder they were stylishly dressed.  Or "CCTYO Women’sライド 奥多摩".

Lots of women's bikes at Yagyu Tei!
Jerome wanted more climbing, whereas I needed to get home, having done almost 100km of "recovery", with another 80km just to get home.  So Jerome headed up the back approach to Kazahari Pass, while I rode along Okutama-ko then down toward Oume through the tunnels.  It was a fast trip home.

Tradition.  Recovery. Challenge.

No comments: