Hike 27/52: Biking along the beach

Date: July 15th
Neighborhood: Pacific Palisades, Santa Monica, Venice Beach
Difficulty: 2 out of 5 (on a bike)
Weather: Cool, breezy
Distance: 13.5 miles (out and back)

Pacific Palisades

Saturday morning was a perfect morning to go on a bike ride along the beach. We started biking at 8 AM with friends to find the beaches were mostly empty. I barely recognized these beaches. I am use to seeing mobs of people filling up the beach when I go to Santa Monica or when I drive along the PCH. I am use to seeing the crowds gather all on the curb to the point of spilling a few people over to just cross the street. This time was different.

Pacific Palisades

Pacific Palisades

Why did I decide to bike along the beach? Maybe a change of scenery. A change of weather. The last two weekends, we’ve lived through 100+ degree Fahrenheit weather (37 degree Celsius). A 20 degree Fahrenheit difference is a short drive away from us.

Venice Beach

I know you can’t tell from this picture, but this is Venice Beach. Again almost no one there. We ended our ride at Venice Beach and had brunch. The crowds I recognized were starting to build up and we biked back to our cars and I experienced my first taste of “bike traffic”.

I’d like to come back and bike another stretch of this bike trail. Apparently it runs 40 miles long one-way. We’ve only biked about less than 7 miles of this path. Until next time.

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Hike 26/52: A Cove in your Backyard

Date: July 2nd
Neighborhood: Lake Nacimento
Difficulty: 5 out of 5 (on a bike)
Weather: Hot
Distance: 2 miles (out and back)

This was a tough bike ride. We found a path behind the lake house and decided to go as far as we can and discovered another way to get to the lake.

What made the ride tough was riding up the hill — it was up, up, up. I confess, I gave up and walked up the hill almost all the way back to the house. It did not make things easier having a trailer with the puppies. That’s easily an additional 50 lbs.

Also, watch out for red ants!

And also, don’t drink mimosas before riding a bicycle in the heat. 

Hike 24/52: To North Hollywood via the Tujunga Wash

Date: June 24th
Neighborhood: Panorama City, Van Nuys, Valley Glen,  North Hollywood
Difficulty: 2 out of 5
Weather: Sunny, breezy
Distance: 11.3 miles (I am only counting bike miles here)

Saturday morning was the day I decided to bike my morning barre class (8.2 miles). For a while, I’ve been meaning to bike for my weekend errands. Hopefully this challenge will help me build that habit and be willing to bike longer than a mile. I also need to buy a bike pannier.

I started this trip from home and biked all the way to North Hollywood. I took the Tujunga Wash path to cut out all the intersections to get to Valley Glen. It’s a nice ride,  I wish I took more pictures. I can’t believe I woke up this early to ride my bike.

I do have to say though, the experience of riding is different from walking the same paths.  For examples in this picture above,  I did not anticipate this part to be a rough ride. I didn’t see cracks or the raises on the path. Unlike walking, you really feel it when you ride over these cracks and raises I thought I was going to fall off my bike or I ruined my tires.

After barre class, I took the bus to Van Nuys. It was starting to get hot.  From there,  I biked the rest of the way home (3.1 miles)

Will this be my new Saturday morning ritual? Biking around for errands? I jokingly told my husband, I am taking some lifestyle tips from the Netherlands and a lot of it is inadvertent:

  • We have a house by a river (err…wash)
  • Eating ice cream
  • Taking public transit
  • Working to live

Hike 22/52 Biking Portland

Date: May 30th
Neighborhood: All over Portland
Difficulty: 2 out of 5
Weather: Misty
Distance: About 12 miles


For a few dollars, you can rent a bike for a day to explore Portland. You can bike a few miles to get to the next neighborhood, drop it off at the nearest bike share pod, borrow again when you choose, and repeat.

I learned Portland is a fairly small city compared to Los Angeles — in fact smaller than San Fernando Valley. Portland has 145 square miles, Los Angeles has 503 square miles, and San Fernando Valley has 260 square miles — wow it takes up more than half of Los Angeles! Due to Portland’s fairly smaller size, its sights were more compact which makes it definitely more bikeable.

Also, it made me think I should bike a little bit more at home. If it’s within a 5 mile radius, I should bike there. I’ll let you know how that experiment goes.

Anyways on to biking…

Continue reading Hike 22/52 Biking Portland

Hike 9/52 626 Golden Streets

Date: March 5th

Neighborhood: More like neighborhoods! South Pasadena/Arcadia/San Marino/Monrovia/Duarte/Azusa and a few I forgot to list!

Distance: 18 miles!

Difficulty: 3 out of 5

Weather: Mostly Cloudy and rain towards Azusa

626 Golden Streets

I tried collecting all the neighborhood stickers.

First of all, wow! I can’t believe I did 626 Golden Streets and finished from South Pasadena to Azusa. This was all 18+ miles and I haven’t ridden a bike in a while. In fact, it was my first time riding a bike with my puppies in the stroller. It looked like they enjoyed it, especially with all the attention they received.

With this bike ride, I achieved quite a bit of personal milestones:

  • First time biking with the puppies
  • First time biking with a stroller
  • First time biking more than 10 miles
  • First time biking in the rain. When the rain got too heavy, I was on the verge of giving up. I told myself “Stop at Duarte, take a metro back.” I didn’t think I would make it to the end at Azusa. There was this voice in my head telling me to keep on going. The voice reminded me the reason why I came to Golden Streets was to finish it.

On the left. At the South Pasadena starting line. It was cloudy. Teddy and Koda enjoyed the air.
On the right. Leaving on the Gold Line from Azusa. Rain-kissed and rested.