On this date, 10 of us showed up for the customary Saturday ride.
We have made a breakthrough this time - new routes, both away and back. I believe it was a welcome change from the somewhat chewed-over much-trodden paths we usually ride.
On the away section, we rode via Givat-Chen, starting behind "Chendale" restaurant, which helped us avoid a long, deep, sandy section. The rest of the path till the bridge over Highway-4 was in a surprisingly ridable condition, owing to having been recently watered by the farmers. From there we cut across directly to the Yarkon River and followed the familiar path along the river till the Ayalon shopping center.
Having been in somewhat shortage of time, instead of continuing to the Tel Aviv Harbour, we consignated David, the human GPS, to lead us back home via Ramat Hasharon. As it goes, David led us through a maze of backstreets - where nobody except him would have found their way - straight to a path that cut through the fields and ended at the pedestrian bridge over Highway-5 near the Tennis Center. And to top it off, after some street riding in Ramat Hasharon, Frederick showed us a path near the fence of Taas, which took us to the southern end of Sderot Yerushalaim. From there it was a breeze to Arcafe in Raanana and the end of a pleasant 34 km. ride.
7.30 am, and there were a fair number of regulars at the starting point ready for our Saturday exercise. The route we chose was one that we have traversed many times but this time we were in for a surprise. We headed West along Ahuza Street, continuing down HaPark Street and turning off to the left as usual about 300 metres from the Ahuza/Yerushalaim junction only to find that our usual path along this section had been blocked! Undaunted we got over the first sand barrier and headed West looking for another way out. What we discovered was that the construction of Highway 531 has begun!!!!!After making our way across some extremely sandy patches (ably led by our leader, David)we joined up to the route that we should have been on and from there it was plain "sailing", or should I say plain biking. We rode via Rishpon, Shefayim, Gaash, the Gaash Golf course, passing Wingate on its Southern boundary and then on to our " watering hole" for a well-earned refreshment stop. From there it was homeward bound. Because of the detour a few kilometres were added and we ended up riding about 35 kms. As usual, the company was good and the ride was very enjoyable.
We met in the school parking lot at Kfar Menachem where Anna presented her new bike to us, bought, in her words, in honour of her husband's birthday! Mazaltov Anna!!! This time David was riding a borrowed bike, and finally 11 riders were ready to set off to conquer the brave (for us) unknown. Ted gave us an orientation and history briefing and then straight away proceeded to lead us up to the conquest of our first hill. The climb was exhausting but we managed (on foot too) to reach the summit, but not before passing by some rather nervy dogs and one snake, all of which demonstrated to Merrill "who's the boss around here!"
From the lookout we headed towards an interesting single-track in the Haruvit Forest, a part of which we were forced to traverse on foot, finally reaching a more comfortable path which led us to paved road and from there to a shaded parking area at the edge of a wood to take a break and refresh.
Continuing on, we climbed a moderate but seemingly endless uphill, passing Tel Zafit and riding through agricultural land and open scenic countryside. At the top of the Tel we reached the vineyards, from where we continued on our way on a path leading to Road 6 en route back to the vehicle parking lot.
We arrived exhausted but happy. In total we rode about 28 kilometers, but this fails to convey the considerable effort invested. The landscape was beautiful, the company pleasant and the'weather considerate to us to an extent. As usual according to David's GPS (http://connect.garmin.com/activity/177271000 ) we ended the ride buried about 12 meters underground...
A smaller number than usual showed up at the start! The others were probably frightened away by the forecast of a "Hamsin" (which didn't materialise during our ride) and which was the cause of our postponing our scheduled away ride in the South. One of those who showed up for the first time in ages was Shaul, sporting a new Bike, new car and new bike carrier. It was great seeing him again. Welcome back Shaul. It was good to have you with us. Another unusual sight at the start was Megan's clean bike. No one recognised it!!! After inspecting Shaul's new bike and making a "shehecheyanu" we were off on one of our usual routes (with a tiny variation now and then) that took us through the industrial area of Ra'anana, Bazra, Bnei Tzion and Udim.
But, this ride was tinged with a bit of sadness! On our approach towards the fields of Udim, Megan and Merrill heard the plaintiff very weak cries of what sounded like a puppy. Megan and Merrill descended a steep bank and started looking for the source of the noise. It wasn't long before they found the puppy in a state of dehydration. A few phone calls were made and Simone, David and Ingride's daughter, agreed to come and fetch the puppy and take the puppy to a vet to be treated. David, Ingride and Merrill took the puppy and left the group in order to meet Simone and the rest of us rode on. It wasn't too long before we received a call from David telling us the the poor puppy had died!
We met up with David, Merrill and Ingride at the Euro Park at Yaqum. From there, David led us on a new path avoiding the sandy patches (well done David!) to the Gas Station at Gaash for our breakfast stop and home (32 kms in all).
The weather was great and so was the company, and the fact that the Hamsin didn't materialize was an added bonus.
Participants: 12 riders including Moshe for the second successive week! Good to see you again Moshe - a ride with us this coming Saturday will put you back into "regular" status! For those of you who don't know (and that's probably most of you) Moshe started riding with John, Hylton and myself way back in the latter 1990s and was responsible for launching the Group into Cyberspace and onto the Israel biking scene when he created our very own Internet website!
Route: From Ra'anana down to the view site in the Sharon Beach Nature Reserve, then north to the southern end of Wingate, over the Coastal Road to Yakum, southwards past Europark and a new variation beyond, back under the Coastal Road to Ga'ash for refreshments, and home - total 34 kms.
Bottom Line: Enjoyable ride, great weather, excellent company
We had this great 36km ride today. At 7:30 we gathered at the entrance to Moshav Elishema. It was nice to see some new faces and some "haven't been there for a while" faces. The weather was beautiful, but there was a promise of soon to be heat in the air. Welcome to Woody. Glad to have you with us and hope that we will see you on many of our future rides
19 of us took off together with our fierce leader, David, forging ahead.We cycled to the source of the Yarkon River from Moshav Elishema and then continued past the lily ponds and along bamboo covered paths along the ruins of Antipatros. We detoured for a wild stunt ride in the concrete "basin". Everyone tried a few curves on the walls, but Frederic and I went for the big down and up. For the first time ever, I managed to bottom out my back shock absorber!!!! From there, we continued through the fields and then made a loop around Einat in order to cover a little more territory. We encountered the steep up and down that was made famous on a Spokes ride when Itzik cycled down the steep incline backwards after faltering when he almost reached the top. It was something that you can never forget!
We continued on from there to Kibbutz Einat for a much needed coffee break.The ride back to Elishema was more direct, along the railroad line. Beautiful weather, great company and a lovely ride. There were a few falls, but no broken bones and not a drop of blood was shed. Have to do this ride again soon.
Well, Passover had passed us over and there was an above average number of riders (18) at the start. The larger number of riders was probably due to some of us having realised that we had a little excess weight due to overeating and matzah that had accumulated of the week of Pesach that had to be worked off !!!
With the exception of one new detour on the approach to Udim, we followed an often ridden route through Batzra, Bnei Tzion, and onto Udim, Yaqum, Gaash and home with our usual stop at the Gaash Service Station to "refuel". It was a very pleasant ride in pleasant weather and, as usual, the company was great. The distance covered was approximately 34 kms.
It looks as thought the rains have stopped for the time being so we can expect a few more sandy patches than usual on our rides for the next few months, so, be prepared!
Well, it has indeed been some time since I last did a write-up for the Cyclenix, and as John vehemently informed me, I am always responsible for the last Saturday's write-up before Pesach. I think he actually made that up.
OK, so some of the "usual suspects" turned up at the start in Ra'anana although I must say that many seemed to be somehow unaccounted for. Megan, Friedreich and Merrill went to Be'eri as they missed our last ride there a short while back, and were informed that the flowers were still in bloom. We missed Ingride and Ted, and wish them a speedy recovery from what currently ails them.
I am not going to go through the details of the route as it was a very regularly ridden one from Ra'anana, through the pardessim and in the direction of the Tel Aviv Haifa coastal road with a short stop at Bueno. We then crossed over the highway and continued on to our "watering hole" at the garage not far from Gaash where the sun was shining, my coffee was hot and strong and my croissant warm and delicious!!
Avraham (Avinu) told the gathered company that he wished to read us something which turned to be the "Bike Rider's Haggada for Pesach" in Hebrew (see the photo John took of the front page) which was highly amusing, and even attracted a couple of other riders from another group who came to listen. Nice touch Avraham.
After this frivolity; yes John and Barbara, it really does exist as a word; we headed home with 29 kms under our belt from the start point.
It remains for me to wish all our members, regulars and otherwise, a Chag Sameach, a kosher Pesach, and go easy on your Balls!!!!! I'm talking Matza here!!
If you look into Cyclenix archives you will find my ride report from 2006 starting with:
"Oh! What a beautiful morning, Oh! What a beautiful day" -that's what we felt...Today I had the same feeling. A beautiful, sunny, a bit chilly morning at quiet Burgata.
Nine regulars pitched up at the start but not David and Ted who are still nuring injuries and hopefully will be back with us for our next ride on the 24th March. The route we took today was almost the same as last week's except that we added a small loop by going through Udim as well. The weather was great (no wind despite the weather forecast) and so was the company. We covered 32 kms. No GPS report today as our trusty leader, David, was on "sick" leave. We wish both David and Ted a speedy recovery and hope to see them next week.
If you have any questions or want to get in touch for any reason, feel free to get in touch with David or John: