News and Ride Schedule
[Last Updated March 17th]
This website update is pretty much an effort to make sure that no one is left wondering or confused about any ride plans for tomorrow, the last normally scheduled Group Ride day of this Winter. Kay and I are at best iffy about joining the (very few?) folks who opt to show up tomorrow, but we're suggesting Pitts Ranch Park in Camarillo for the starting area. The park is located at the corner of Flynn Road and Calle Brisa about a mile and a half north of the westbound US-101 offramp (Exit 52). It's best to leave the eastbound freeway at Dawson Drive (Exit 53A). The suggested meet time is our usual 9AM, hoping to ride away at about 9:30. One basic route for this ride can start up the Calleguas Creek bikepath to Upland Road, then reversing course to ride back down the creek, making a couple of extraneous loops before going to the food court at CSUCI for lunch. Riders who want more of a challenge may choose to climb Upland into Mission Heights before going down to the farmlands. Some may even opt to ride down the Coast Highway as far as Sycamore Canyon. The basic route is about 18 miles, including a few climbs up from the creeek bed and a stretch of Class II bikelanes over the flat farmlands. Temps should rise pretty quickly from the low 50s to the mid-60s with light breezes.
VERY SERIOUSLY, ONE MORE TIME, PLEASE NOTE! – We really need to hear from anyone who has any suggestions for our upcoming rides. We will be trying hard to set up most of our rides so that there's an opportunity for riders who want to go a bit faster and farther than the Pokey Patrol people who've made up the majority on our rides in 2022. However, there's an obvious vacancy for a ride leader who knows each route as well as having at least a minimal herding instinct to keep track of folks trying to follow. We expect to plan rides over the next few months in Santa Barbara County, Santa Clarita and the Ventura River Trail once the flood damage is repaired. We're still especially eager to hear from anyone who's been aching to plan, coordinate and/or lead the gang on his, her or their favorite venue.
This is a brief listing of preliminary plans for upcoming rides:
| 3/4/2023: A small group of us met at Barranca Vista Park, and separated into two subgroups as we cruised up to the bike path beside the CA-126 freeway, riding east to Saticoy and then returning for lunch on the food court at the Gateway Shopping Center. The faster subgroup added some miles by zooming down to the Riverview Linear Park along the river, then up to Telegraph Road for the rocket ride down Brown Barranca.|
| 2/18/2023: We started from Channel Park in the Channel Islands Marina, and after the usual morning munchies and coffee, we rode off in two subgroups with intermingled ride venues, both looping to the northeast, then returning to turn around at the Port Hueneme lighthouse. The longer route was 25 to 30 miles long, looping up to Olivas Park Drive; the Pokey Patrol took a more twisty and entertaining shortcut through the MUPs of Seabridge Marina for a ride of about 20 miles. Our groups hooked up again as we rode down J Street and rode together down the Bubbling Springs bikepath, past the pier and as close as we could come to the lighthouse, which was blocked by a road closure. We had a nice lunch at Pho Saigon on our return to Channel Islands, making the most of a cool, sunny Winter day in coastal SoCal.|
2/4/2023: In accordance with our commitment to 'Socialize Before Exercise', this weekend's ride started with a mini-surprise birthday celebration for Ann at Marina Park in Ventura. About 12 folks, happily including some relative newbies plus a few VCRR-eterans we hadn't seen for awhile, rode our usual up-the-coast-and-back cruise. After a quick pitstop at Surfer's Point, we separated into smaller subgroups with diferent speeds and continued on up the beach and by the river. We encountered a huge pile of post-storm debris blocking the trail and had to detour near the end of Main Street. The riders spread out as we pedaled up the Old Coast Highway to our different turnaround points, but most of the group reassembled for lunch at Pizza Man Dan's in downtown Ventura. Alan had to deal with some minor mechanical issues, but there were no other serious difficulties; the weather was cool with bright sunshine.|
|1/21/2023: Our second VCRR Group Ride of the year started from Barranca Vista Park in eastern Ventura. Ten folks showed up this weekend, including two new trikeys. We split into two groups, with the faster riders racking up more miles and climbs on a cruise out to Saticoy. The subgroups met on our return to visit on a pit stop at Chumash Park, then rode together for a mile or so before separating so that faster riders racked up a few more miles. We managed to coordinate our timing so that all the riders and a couple of folks who opted to sleep in a litte longer got together again for the group lunch at Ventura Gateway Shopping Mall's food court. After lunch, the gang fragmented as everyone returned to Barranca Vista.|
|1/7/2023: Our first VCRR Group Ride this Winter was on the most common – and most popular, at least historically – venue: Marina Park to Rincon Hill. Like most of our rides over the last few months participation was pretty minimal, but the guys who did the full route had a good ride on one of the rare weekends when the weather was a bit more inviting than those before and after. We were intending to arrange for more non-riding folks to meet for lunch, but the logistics bogged down for that effort. We're hoping for a better turnout and much better coordination the next time we opt to cruise up the beach.|
|LATE AUTUMN 2022: After the first ride of this season, the group pretty much took a hiatus, partly because of unpredictable weekend weather, holiday hoopla, and partly because so many of the folks who regularly rode with us a few years ago are no longer with us, either as a result of health issues, COVID concerns, relocation or changing interests. This 'unplanned recess' was also undoubtedly impacted by my going into something maybe like a burnout or a reaction to the realization that the makeup and dynamics of VCRR are, probably inevitably, changing, and not for the better. Obviously we have fewer riders showing up, with no new trikers or recumbikers joining our ranks. I suspect that it also may be time for a younger, speedier person to replace me for choosing a venue and coordinating the rides, but so far at least no eager 'administrator' has volunteered for that position. I have asked everyone for suggestions to brighten our future, but the most common reaction was merely a complaint about some of us riding at "8 miles per hour". We will be working on that, but don't count on seeing some of us switching from pedal to electric power.
The high point of mid-Autumn for the group was what was planned as a Bad Weather Brunch. Unlike the drizzle that was only a possibility for our previously scheduled ride, the day (December 3rd) actually turned out to be not a bad day for riding rather than noshing. About a dozen folks showed up for brunch at Main Street Restaurant, with about half of them making a round trip of almost 100 miles. As always we had a great visit, but I couldn't help feeling a hint of 'Requiem Mass' as we talked about the changes in our group over the last two years. We have a few photos, but I wasn't happy with them; if anyone wants I'll either post or email them.
|10/1/2022: Our first group ride of Autumn started from Pitts Ranch Park in Camarillo, riding up the Calleguas Creek bikepath to Upland Road. From there we reversed course and headed back down the creek, making a couple of extraneous loops before cruising down onto the farmlands toward the ocean. We popped into the food court at CSUCI for lunch before pretty much retracing our route back to the start. There were only seven riders today, but we had a nice ride in great weather.|
|9/24/2022: Sheep dog, goathead, fly-away flag, sunny blue sky, cool ocean breeze and a bargain brunch, complete with a floor show... That's the short version of this weekend's outing, which wasn't quite an official VCRR Group Ride, but it was an easy, fun day for a bunch of us cruising around the marina MUPs in Oxnard. You just shoulda been there...|
9/17/2022: This Saturday was a Coastal Cleanup Day for Ventura beaches, but I doubt that most workers were expecting to find an oversized chunk of litter like this. We were happy that the City of Ventura has discontinued charging a fee for vehicles at Marina Park, our favorite place to start a ride up the coast. After the usual socialization, with double digit attendance this time, and minimal indulgence in mocha and munchies, we rode off on Pierpont Boulevard, thru San BV Beach and past the pier, wending our way among hundreds of folks with pointed picks and pincers. We made our traditional pit stop at Surfer's Point, and then continued on up the Class I Omer Rains bikepath to the old beachfront highway. Our group splintered somewhere along there, as a couple of riders opted for breath rather than mileage. On the way back, two of our early turnaround groups hooked up for lunch, meandering thru the farmers' market and street fair to enjoy lunch on the sidewalk at the Busy Bee cafe. We didn't get a report on the more persistent pedalers, but I suspect they had a good ride, with reasonably mild temps and a light tailwind for their return.|
9/3/2022: In open (but obviously pretty unpopular) defiance of our late Summer heat wave, our ride this Saturday used an inland route; at least we avoided the Labor Day weekend traffic congestion nearer the beach. We started from Crescent Park in Oxnard's Riverpark, riding away on a loop around the big gravel pits on the fairly new Class I bikepath. We left Riverpark on Ventura Road, crossed the river on the freeway bridge, and rode up the Johnson Barranca bikepath and eastward to Ventura Community Park, where we made the drastic, but unanimous decision to shorten the ride a bit and ride directly over to our lunch stop at Ventura Gateway. Our group size was doubled for lunch on the shady open court, with an unusually long chat session before the riders left via Ralston Street to zoom down Johnson Drive, recross the river and pedal back to the start area.||
8/20/2022: This ride started from the small public parking lot in the Seabridge Marina, with an unusual route for that venue. After a fairly direct loop down to the Channel Islands Marina harbor entrance, we rode up the coast past Oxnard State Beach, then Harbor Boulevard to the Arundell Barranca bikepath. We met some other VCRRians for lunch at Main Street Restaurant in Ventura, before returning with a blast down Seaward Avenue. Coastal weather was cool with sun dispersing early morning overcast and a light afternoon ocean breeze, no problems, good socialization – just another nice Summer cruise.
RIDE VIDEOS AND OTHER PIX: We're hoping that Rolly finds time to add his videos from this year's ride to the older VCRR Group Rides for public viewing on YouTube at this link. There is also a series of older video clips posted on YouTube, on 'TheVCRR' channel, at this URL. There is a VCRR photo archive on Flickr; to view it, start at this URL. Vincent has posted some of our ride pix to the Recumbent Trikes Group on Facebook (one of several). We are always eager and hoping for more, newer videos, and, of course, your feedback is eagerly solicited.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE DON'T FORGET!: COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS ARE EAGERLY[!] SOLICITED FOR OUR GROUP RIDES THIS SUMMER, AS WELL AS FEEDBACK FOR THIS WEBSITE, RIDE NOTICES, PHOTOS, RIDE VIDEOS, ROUTE SHEETS, MAPS, CUSTOM VCRR SAFETY FLAGS AND/OR VIDEO FLYOVERS. We are semi-desperately looking for suggestions for new, different or retro/classic VCRR Group Rides for this year, either in person, by phone or email. We are seriously considering, contingent upon feedback, discontinuing sending email notices before each upcoming ride, but for now at least, please let me know if you want to make any changes to our email list.
If you newbies or folks who haven't ridden with the group for a while need help or more information for getting to any of our rides, please email or phone me. Our home phone number – usually the best way to talk to us – is 805-981-0339. If we're not home you can also try my NEW CELL PHONE: 805-612-7662. Text messages will not work on our home phone, and are slightly discouraged for the cell phone. Don't even think about Facebook or Twitter! For convenience my email link is: