Ventura to Santa Monica

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August 16 – 56 miles, 850 feet

This ride, yesterday’s, was basically on Hwy. 1 once I reached Hueneme. Getting to and through Hueneme was on a variety of roads, some through residential areas, some through agricultural areas.

Posted is a photo of a jet that is in a small display park right at the entrance to Hwy. 1. However, getting onto Hwy. 1 was troublesome because the on ramp Google directed me to had a sign banning, among others things, bicycles. I found a frontage road that went a mile or so to the next on ramp and because it was right after the freeway ended, bicycles were not prohibited. That started a lengthy ride on Hwy. 1, all of which had lots of traffic but most of which had ok shoulders. That was mostly ok but with a 2-3 mile stretch I preferred to avoid because of crosswinds, a narrow shoulder and very fast traffic.  

I thought it was interesting to see all of the RVs, of all sizes and types, that were set up and camping along various stretches of the highway where there was good beach access. The weather was nice so there were a lot of people on the beach.  Unfortunately, I had to concentrate on where I was riding because of the traffic so I wasn’t able to enjoy the scenery, some of which consisted of people, as much as I might otherwise have been able to. 

I hadn’t previously realized that the town of Malibu stretches on for more than 20 miles. That is a lot of coastline for one small city. It also meant that it took me longer to get through Malibu to Santa Monica than I had thought it would.

I remember seeing Pepperdine University overlooking the coast and wondering how serious a school could be with a setting like that. Maybe it focuses on will power because it would certainly take a lot to resist the call of the ocean and beach, especially on a pretty day. Yesterday was more than that, it was a beautiful day; blue skies and warm but not hot weather. From what I could see, a lot of people did succumb to the beach’s call.

The last few miles to the Santa Monica pier were especially fun. When a couple of riders whizzed past me, I thought that I was close enough to the finish to be able to push hard without risking blowing up with lots of miles to go. The result was that I took after the 2 cyclists. I caught 1 fairly quickly but it took a while to catch the other one. The pushing hard was fun, especially since I knew that the end was near.

Riding to the Santa Monica Pier felt somewhat triumphant. In part because LA was my home for so long, from birth through 4 years at UCLA. It also felt that way in part because that pier was the end of Dave Bagley’s Moraga to Los Angeles ride. And finally, it felt that way in part because the pier is very close to where we started the first Laura’s Ride in 2016 when Nick and I rode from Santa Monica to St. Augustine, FL. So this ride has now gone through 2 places where I started other Laura’s rides, the other being Sunset Beach in Oregon a few miles west of Astoria where we started Laura’s Ride North to Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 2017.

(Santa Monica Pier)

(Recognize the location? It’s where I started the Santa Monica, CA to Augustine, FL, ride in 2016.)

Ale met me at the pier and we drove to my condo in Korea town where we spent the night.  I had dinner with my daughter Kristina while Ale visited with an aunt and cousin she had never meet.


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