Twelve riders showed up at the Ramat Gan Stadium and we made our way into Park Leumi and on to the Tyelet along the beachfront. Riding through the park amongst the early morning joggers and walkers in the cold morning air is always very pleasant. From there we rode through the Tel Aviv Port and then along the Beachfront. The new cycle paths along the coast certainly make for much safer riding (for the cyclists and the pedestrians!).
Eventually we reached the port of Jaffa, but, instead of going on to Bat Yam we doubled back into the Susanne Dellal and Neve Tzedek neighborhoods. The old buildings and narrow streets were quaint and quiet and riding through the Carmel Shuk's empty streets was certainly vastly different from the hustle and bustle during the week.
Our "breakfast" stop was at Max Brenner on Rothschild Boulevard. Then it was back to the cars via Rothschild and Ibn Gvirol streets and the Hayarkon Park which was now teeming with pedestrians, other cyclists and joggers, out enjoying the cold air and bright sunshine. Another very pleasant 27 km ride (in cool weather for a change) was now part of Cyclenix archives.
Shabbat morning, the alarm clock was ringing...
For the first time, in quite some time I thought that maybe I should just sleep in. This is usually a sign that winter is here but even though it is the end of November winter seems to be light years away. With no excuse, I got out of bed and rushed to our meeting spot.
7:30 am, 20 of us gathered up for such a lovely ride. Merrill and Sydelle didn't even make it out of the parking lot and needed to stop to fill up air breaking the record for fastest malfunction ever! Needless to say, they caught up with us very fast.
We rode out of Ra'anana heading north to Batzra and Bnei Zion through the blooming citrus orchards continuing towards Tel Yizhak. The first half of the ride had a few up hills and the sandy sand that our area has been blessed with. Surprisingly, the sand this time had a bit more of a closer to the sea kind of feeling to it. It wasn't dry but just a bit damp and had been turned over to give us just a bit more of a challenge. The up hills were familiar but came one after the other, not leaving us to much time to get over the previous one and catch our breath.The biggest challenge of today was the "big climb" Merrill did it first and was standing at the top yelling her lungs out to encourage us all to do it. One after the other, the majority of us gave it our best shot and the most succeeded.
After 16 km's Merrill, Sydelle and Uri took a shorter route home while the rest of us continued on our way. The ride from this point was very easy going and just pure fun!
We continued east to Udim, the scenery was all very well known but there was something a bit different today. The weather couldn't have been more perfect, the fields were all bright green, trees were calling, nature at its finest! After a quick phone call to assure our place at Landwer, we headed back south through Yakum, Bnei Zion and Batzra all enjoying the great quality time together. I definitely tried to practice my new technical riding skills that I just recently learned, causing me almost to get dizzy going around in circles... also getting people to wonder if a girl can go left around the circle and not only right.
We all got to Landwer happy to sit and enjoy breakfast after doing 38 km's of pedalling. The beer was flowing, the food was yummy and we were all happy! For a morning that I almost didn't get out of bed it really turned out perfect! I know that, happy smiling friends are always waiting for me to join for the ride. So till next week...
Same place, same time, just like the cheers theme song goes:
"where everybody knows your name,
and they're always glad you came;
you want to go where people know,
people are all the same;
you want to go where everybody knows your name."
We started off in two groups driving to the super mini -forest of Ben Shemen as some of us thought that interpretations of instructions are best left to Historians and decided we like the previous start location better, irrespective of interpretations!
Some twenty of us made the effort on a beautiful morning with perfect weather. Among returning riders were Boaz,Yael and Ayelet , the latter driving our average age spiraling downwards. We departed working our way thru the throngs of riders. The price of long easy down-hills is quickly rewarded by challenging up-hills and today was no exception as we were soon wheezing to reach the summit of our now notorious "Lookout" (recovery room). Having no warm-up makes this climb ever more of a struggle. But up we made it in time to take a couple of breathers and take in the stunning panorama. John groaned but made it like all of us. Boy, does he love down-hills.
We managed to repair Rafi's perplexing puncture and we are still inclined to blame my pump which I continue to deny vigorously. So up another hill and yet another and to make things worse we encountered hundreds of families out for the day walking on OUR trails. Such HutzpaHHHHHH!!! Another several up-hills with John's well deserved moans growing louder. But he did continue in heroic fashion and even reveled in the singles. Patching up Yael and Haim was in ER fashion. Too many nurses... Almost at the end several rebels played "don't follow the leader and were soon declared MIA . Several calls later we redirected them and regrouped but not before several other leaderless riders returned to the parking thinking the ride was over. We recovered some bodies and set off after David to Tel Fadid A view and snacks were in order followed by a charge back to the cars and home. Another ride fit for superlatives.
Rock, grand, mystical, overcrowded, piney, cool, damp, breezy, stony, risky, single kids, strollers are just of the images and senses that come to mind.
Thanks to David!!!!!!!!!
"Sun is shining, weather is sweet, yeah
make you wanna move your dancing feet..." Bob Marley
The perfect riding weather brought out 23 Cyclenixers today!
Ahuva, was our new comer today, a warm welcome to her. At the beginning we were mainly on pavements and roads, I guess to keep away from the mud. We went up Ahuza towards Herzelia, going down Habrigada Hayehudit for a change instead of the dreadful up it on the way back.
Quite early in the ride Frances left us due to a puncture that I guess could not be fixed. We continued into Kfar Shmaryahu climbing the bridge I was extremely excited when Yoavi succeeded in riding up the bridges today. I think it took me about half a year of cycling with the group to do that!
We hit the off road trails just out of Kfar Shmaryahu and were heading north. It seemed that the heavy rains from a couple weeks ago were enough to flood quite a few cities in Israel but not sufficient to get rid of the sandy sand that this area is "blessed" with!
The sand got some of us off our bikes walking. Yvette thought it was payback time for John and his mischief and tried to rub tires like he does so often. It resulted in her falling off her bike and john finding comfort of protection by our heavenly father. Or as he put it "she has been punished by the lord!" I only regret that I can't let you hear the evangelistic voice he used while saying that! I will just say I almost wet myself!
Carrying on northwards heading to the bridge to cross over to Yakum, Ingride had a fall. It doesn't look like it was too bad but did need some TLC and a bandage for the bleeding.
At this point John, Yoavi and I went to do the "jump" just after the petrol station as all the riders passed us by while we were having some fun.
David took us the less muddy way and seemed to be a good call because we encountered very little mud on our path back to Raanana. We crossed under the train tracks to the Bnei Zion bypass road to carry on pedaling all the way to Landver.
I felt that Yoavis pace was a bit too slow for the group at this point and had his mother come fetch us. Even though he wasn't happy about my "grown up" decision, we enjoyed the quality time on the side of the road.
Since I declared him an official Cyclenix member today when he asked where we will be having breakfast, he obviously did not go home but came to Landver for the best part of the ride.
The ride was about 32 km's long and was another great home patch ride!
The day started way too early with my alarm going off at 3:40 am!
Funny thing is I never sleep well the evening before a ride like this so my clock didn't really wake me up. I could hear the rain pour the whole night long as was wondering "will it stop before my clock goes off?"
I fetched Talia at 5:00 and we were on our way to the Sea of Galilee.
We met up with Richard at the starting point and further down the road with David and Ingride, who stayed in Tiberius the night before.
The weather was perfect just as predicted! It did not rain and the sun was hiding behind the clouds so it wasn't hot either.
This was Talia's first time doing the Kineret ride so we got to yank her chains a bit about the distance and how many dreadful up hills to expect. As usual trustful David was the one to give her the correct answers.
I was riding on a substitute bike, a specialized carbon bike. It is not my size and has not been fitted so the ride was physically painful to say the least. The longer version was that there were quite a few complaints about "lady parts"!
Quote of the day may as well be "this is a $#1T bike" (censored especially for Ingride)
Ingride sure got her laugh when watching me go down hills! The bike was almost going backwards it was so slow! While everyone was flying down I was peddling like a mad person trying to gain some speed. It was pointless since it really didn't make a difference but I guess I fulfilled my purpose by making everyone have a good laugh at me. This was the ride that David FIXED!
At first it was a broken chain, for a random stranger, to whom Ingride volunteered his services.
The second fix was a gear problem for a friend of mine who I ran in to (figuratively speaking) and the third was my $#1T bike that the front brake seemed to be a bit pressed.
Surprisingly the ride seemed physically easier than the years before and none of us had any problems with the dreaded up hills, even after "warning" Talia about them.
The last 10 km's drained us of our energy being boring and straight. I think some of us preferred the up hills...
Richard and I took the challenge of speeding up to try and get them over with and waited at the finish line.
The cherry on top, at the end of the ride we got to meet Richards other half Vonda who was patiently waiting for us at the end.
We then had a great breakfast at Greg cafe continuing the tradition from last year.
The weather forecast was rain AND there was also the Annual Kinneret ride which some of our regulars took part in. but, nevertheless, 8 of us pitched up for the ride. We had had heavy rains over the last two weeks so we decided to take a route that would not be too muddy! Heading up Weitzman passing the Cemetery and heading for Kfar Shmaryahu and on to the Herzliya Marina was our plan and was went well until we reached the turn off to Rishpon, west of the Cemetery. I have used that road since 1978 during the Summer months and the Winter months. It's had its fair share of puddled, pools and stony patches, but, that's now history because the road has now been demolished by the rains. See the photos!!! Traversing the "ex-road" was quite fun. At the first large pool one or two riders decided to make a detour around but I decided to chance my arm and proceeded to ride through. I'm here, which means I made it and other then followed suit! Then came the rocky part with running water every now and then which we walked (with difficulty). We were soon back on our bike. More mud and a small detour caused by a "little lake" on the road alongside the Tel Aviv - Haifa railway line and then we headed for an oft travelled route through Kfar Shmaryahu, across the Coastal road, the cliffs of Herzliya Pituach, onto the Marina and then back home via Tapuz, Herzliya, where we made our breakfast stop before heading for Ra'anana. All in all, a very pleasant 29 kms in outstanding weather.
After two bulletins, a lot of instructions and a comment on FB that needed to be deleted all 25 of us managed to arrive at the starting point. At the west side or Alexander River we started our journey.
A big welcome to our newest member, Joseph, and to Gila and Yael who returned after a looooooong absence. I personally was happy for an easy clean ride after my muddy-capades the day before... boy was I mistaken! Easy yes! Clean?! You gotta be bloody kidding! Actually blood might have been easier to clean!
Riding east alongside the river very quickly we came upon puddles left by the rainy week. We zigged; we zagged around them enjoying the fact that sometimes you are just a bit too close to the water. The mud occasionally causing your rear tire to drift just so slightly and for a split second you think you will be the puddles first victim.
It seemed that there would be no victims today!
We had a minor detour on our route because of trees that had fallen in the storms this week, blocking our path. It's at moments like these that I think to myself how much better off I was when I couldn't keep up with the faster riders and was with Ted in the back of the pack. The sweep gets to enjoy watching everyone turn around after discovering that they can't continue.
we continued, still heading east against the rivers stream (not actually in the river) at some point I kind of got a bit fed up about the single line riding because of the need to go around the puddles and just started riding straight through them.
After a couple of puddles, I was asked more and more if I had fallen off my bike into the mud. At first I didn't understand the repetitive question but very fast it became clear...
Merrill and Stuart joined me and we had a jolly time! Flying through the puddles, mud became air born, our vision was impaired, we got wet but had the best time ever!
While we were busy being six years old, there were 3 punctures, two of them were Uri's! I guess three for one person would be a bit much.
The constant waiting and the fact that one of our riders had to turn back because he wasn't feeling well, caused a herd syndrome and all turned back.
I can't really say what happened on the way back to our cars because Merrill and I were still flying through all the puddles ahead of everyone. The faces and remarks of innocent bystanders were priceless!
We only did 24 kilometers, but boy were they fun! And now we are stuck with the cleaning part...
David informed us that we would be riding along the Yarkon. Many of us assumed it was to TLV and prepared to view the rising Metropolis in the morning sun. We had the pleasure of young Yoav joining us and no less a pleasure at greeting Barbara who has been on leave of injury absence of 7 or so months.
Twenty of us departed and followed a no-sand route devised by Merril who is known as a sand lover!!! Within no time we reached the Yarkon and it was only some twenty minutes into the ride along the "Amazon" in reedy tunnels that people asked me why are we riding to the east. "Search me" (no pun intended)was my obvious answer. The tail rarely knows what the head is doing? So eastwards it was and had been David's intention from the start but some of us wrongly assumed otherwise.
Not so wise! The ride was filled with various minor events in which we parted company at various place. We took wrong turns and backtracked and for unknown reasons we finally regrouped miraculously somewhere on the trail nearing the garbage mountain of Hod Hasharon.
Young Yoav still had his smile and not a complaint was heard from his tiny mouth (Nor from Barabara)!!! even after 35KL's. His relative still climbs trees. A throwback? We had crossed various channels (legs in the air)and muddy spots and our bikes were far from pristine but by then the breakfast spot dominated the discussions so we found ourselves at Aroma HS and to our surprise still no beer so Arik and Haim who needed a quick transfusion set off for wetter pastures. We ended our repast and set off in various groups to our final destinations. HHOOOMMMEEE!!!!!!!!!!!
An average of 42kl's...not bad considering. Considering what?
My conclusion is that sometimes it's better not knowing what you don't want to know. Another biker's quote!!
Some thoughts on naming this ride as we rode.
A ride to remember.
A ride not to remember.
Where are we.
The way we were.
Where are they?
The wrong way.
Follow the leader.
Where's the leader.
Two Jews, five opinions
The world is a circle without a beginning.
The lost Legions.
Quite flows the Yarkon.
Show me the way to go home.
A bridge too far.
Coming thru the Rye (REEDS)
Coming or going.
Easy rider. Hard ride!
The longest day,
We're the F**kuya!!!!!!!!
The lost African tribe
The Natives are restless (time for coffee)
At last an away ride!
After more than two months of waiting for the weather to budge a bit...
it finally did!
It rained, temperatures have dropped a bit and the humidity is relatively down.
Like snails after the rain, 18 of us came out to check the perfect, tight and damp trails.
We met up at the south point of haruvit forest, where we also began our ride.
Just a bit south west from our starting point we had a view of Tel G'at, only one of the biblical references on this ride.
The ride began with quite a long stretch of paved roads that let us gain the illusion that it might be an easy ride... towards Sdot Micha we hit the off road paths where we enjoyed the nice and bumpy trail with small rocks. After being "shaken, not stirred" we were now like a fine martini all warmed up for a smooth journey down our path... oh but we didn't go down, we went up instead!
Our climbing (not on trees) started off nice and easy with stretches that weren't too steep or long. However they did come one after the other with short straights between them.
It didn't matter which climb or if I asked Ted or Dina if this is the big one, the answer was constantly: "this is just the warm up!"
Sometimes in life there are situations that you just know! Like passing a kidney stone, when we got to "the climb" you just knew!
I personally asked out loud if I should try and sprint up and when received an answer with a bit of doubt was on my way in high gear to take on the challenge. I did have to drop some gears and it did drain quite a bit of energy but it was fun. From this point the only climbing we did was up stairs, while our bikes rested at the bottom with faithful guards.
While climbing the stairs it was noticeable that almost everyone needed to hold on the banister. Good thing that it was our last climb of the day (for those who didn't follow me afterwards) some of us went up to the view point of Tel Azeka, where we had a view of the entire area and got to see a monument of one of the most famous battles our land has seen.
We were standing where David took down mighty Goliath! Quotes from of the courageous battle are carved there in stone for all to remember and to be enlightened of this monumental spot!
Our Favourite David had quite an illusion about this battle and to the very high tech advanced tools that David used to defeat Goliath. I don't believe that GPS systems and electric slingshots were around just then so it may have been the late hour, the heat or just David's whimsical side that brought on his idea of the battle. There was also a stone map of the area and it turns out that someone has decided to scratch off Gaza from the map. So thanks to whoever did that it seems we are now freed from the Israeli Palestinian problem since Gaza does no longer exist.
We all enjoyed the stop but it was time to start descending the mountain!
Flying down at approximately 45 km/h on paved roads with a small group behind me. The more cautious riders, or shell we call them the smarter ones who did not follow me and stayed with David, did not have to climb back up a bit to the turn we had missed.
I still think it was totally worth it!
We were back on the off road paths going returning the same way we came. The ride back was fast and smooth all the way back to our cars where Ted and Dina son in law and their grandson were waiting with tea for whoever wanted.
We covered 25 km's and had a great time with no mishaps!
See you next week!
Over time was involved in a variety of sports :
The Cyclenix Group
My Away-Away biking history:
My bikes history:
My Happy hobby:
If you have any questions or want to get in touch for any reason, feel free to get in touch with David or John: