Better When the Sun Don't Shine

In their latest album the Drive-By Truckers sing about liking "it better when the sun don't shine." Now, if you made it out on the bike today you already know, but if you didn't spin at all, let me tell you that today sucked for riding. For the life of me I could not find a single good view anywhere, and I looked a lot. In fact I stopped so many times hoping to find a picturesque vantage that I ended up doing much more stopping than riding. But this is what happens around here when we reach the winter months - the smog clears out, so that you can see things - it's just no good at all.

I don't know if those Trucker guys actually believe in the lyrics of their song, but I really did not think I had a chance of convincing you, even without the accompanying round of photos. There is truth to that stopping part, though. Every time I raised my head from the mystic point three feet ahead of my front wheel there was another vista, another reason to stop. As usual, the far away views from the Claremont Hills Wilderness Park (CHWP)) were dominated by the valley below and the peaks above - snow capped Ontario Peak and Cucamonga Peak, and broad-shouldered Sunset Peak closer at hand. Lower down, the hills' green cloak is really beginning to show through last summers hollow stalks of dry grass

le tetons du Claremont

across the valley to the mountains of Santa Ana

degrees of verticality

one day I will stash the bike in some shrubs and explore those wooded draws coming down the near hillsides

twin towers

abrupt transitions

Puddingstone, a little patch of blue between the trees at center

I was there

rear wheel

not a bad view anywhere


"discovered" a new hilltop - outcroppings of granite, a couple nice oak trees for shade. I don't meditate, but if I did, this would be the spot. I did sit for a while, listening to the birds, the breeze, the (unfortunate) ever-present roar from the Valley, the same roar that drove Coyote away...

oh, and soaking in that view of le tetons du Claremont.

not the only rider out there today

and since the one view lacking at the CHWP is the one of Mt. Baldy, I cut through the little park on the way home and snapped one of the old man.