Velo course: Sunland-Mulholland Loop with the Milly's...

To be honest, even though the day's ride covered some familiar old mashing grounds, I can't say as that I ever did this exact loop before. So, in some ways it was kind of new. As the post title suggests this was another of the weekly Milly's Riders get togethers. The group has been meeting righteously every Sunday since that first ride back in those cooler, early summer days (June 3). Would Milly be proud? I suspect know so. The guys have stuck with the program (more rides, longer rides, harder rides), and after the passing of nearly three months time, seem stronger for it.

the gathering, in Highland Park

looks like a double pace line along Linda Vista but, no, we were just riding two-abreast

along Foothill in La Crescenta. since i had everyone behind me,
it was time for an over-the-shoulder shot

Claudio at the top of Laurel Canyon

Roberto, the day's suffer-fest was his choice, so if it looks like there is some
suffering going on, he brought it on himself

Mason, looking like a Euro-pro with his jersey open (but rocking a cx bike)

Mason's flat on Mulholland

center line shot up on Mulholland

i passed the camera off to Enrique so he could take some shots of the group, me at the back. hey, the glory spot was won, my work was done. nothing but blue skies...

the group overlooking the Valley - moi, Tony, Andrzej, Mason, Roberto, Tom, Claudio (Enrique at the camera, and Waldi pulled off early)

Andrzej's turn to flat

Polska

meanwhile, while waiting, Claudio had the best idea - some shade and soft grass

along the River Trail. easy riding now

finally, back to Highland Park, via Figueroa

I am going to confess, right away to feeling brilliant today, not in a smarter kind of way, but rather in "boyo, I'm riding well today." I was gifted the first sprint spot, at Descanso Gardens, by Claudio who, I am convinced, could have flicked around me at any time. Later came the "glory spot" of the day - top of Laurel Canyon. I didn't want to give anyone the opportunity to gift me this one, so I hammered the bottom in the big ring, enough to shed all but Claudio once again. That was alright, he pushed me to higher levels and, though I paid for the effort when things got steep, I had enough in the tank to claim the KOM prize. Everything that came in between was either fun or nerve-wracking, depending on where we were. Going up or down, I have always liked Sunland Blvd and Mulholland, both. The Valley though (Vineland and the flats of Laurel Canyon in particular) well, lets just say that if there is a more  motor-dependent place in the world, I am yet to experience it. I was quickly reminded why, during my years of living out that way, I only rode up Laurel Canyon once. That was enough. Maybe I have just become spoiled by the easy flow out on the county fringe, but I surely do not miss life in the Val.


The Route: Typically the Milly's Riders start out in Highland Park, not far from where Milly lived. A couple quick jogs brings you to Avenue 64 which you want to take nearly all the way up to Colorado Blvd, just a quick transition to Melrose Ave, and then make a right onto Colorado. Watch for signs and transition off Colorado and on to Linda Vista. Take that street all the way along its length, up above the Arroyo Seco and the Rose Bowl. Transition right onto Berkshire when you get to that point and wind around to Chevy Chase where you make a right and then left onto Descanso. Take that up and past the Gardens, over the 210 Fwy, until you reach Foothill and make a left. You will take Foothill all the way through the La Crescenta Valley until the Sunland/Tujunga area. Where Foothill transitions right, you will go straight and onto Sunland which is a nice long, mostly downhill spin, through an area that has always seemed surprisingly rural. Enter the urban area again, keeping to Sunland through a couple jogs. After the final jog, the street becomes Vineland. Just take that street straight south, pass the former Lockheed/Burbank Airport (now Bob Hope), all the way down to Magnolia and turn right, followed by a left onto Laurel Canyon. Take LC all the way up the pass to the junction with Mulholland and go left. Ride up above the Valley on one side and Los Angeles on the other, enjoying the views when you can. At Cahuenga Pass cross the 101 Fwy and go left on Cahuenga, head down to Barham and turn right. Another right on Forest Lawn, and yet another on Zoo Drive brings you into Griffith Park. Pass Travel Town and the picnic lawns, make a left on Victory, and then right at the Los Angeles River Bike Trail. You take this all the way to where it currently ends, exit and go left at Riverside Drive. Head up and over the river and onto N. Figueroa, take that all the way through Highland Park, hang a right at York and then a left on Ave 66, and the finish. 51.29 miles, 2611' of elevation gain.

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