Wednesday, November 5, 2014
This ride heads east to Lake Hennessey on Sage Canyon Rd/CA-128 E to Lake Berryessa on Berryessa Knoxville Rd. It continues up and over Pope Canyon into Pope Valley for a fun rolling stretch on Chiles Pope Valley Rd and a grand descent along Chiles Creek back to Lake Hennessey.
The rolling 3 miles from Sage Canyon Rd/CA-128 E to the Lake Hennessey boat launch area is on nice smooth pavement with wonderful lake views.
According to the Lake Patrol, bicyclists are not allowed to park at the Lake Hennessey boat launch/dock parking lot although there is no signage indicating such restrictions.
The group meet up at Lake Hennessey:
We head east on Sage Canyon Rd/CA-128; the rolling terrain for the first 2.4 miles goes along Sage Creek to the gates at Kuleto Estate Winery.
The road climbs out of the canyon with gradient ranges of 5-8% for one mile.
The road levels out and continues pass the Nichelini Family Winery towards Lower Chiles Valley Rd.
CA-128 E continues through the vineyards along Elder Valley followed by a fast sweeping descent to Berryessa Knoxville Rd near Turtle Rock.
Berryessa Knoxville Rd drops down through the canyon along Cappell Creek to the western shores of Lake Berryessa.
The one short climb from Capell Cove up to the ridge has fabulous views of the lake and the surrounding mountains. Take a moment to enjoy the beauty of Lake Berryessa and sculpted ridges of the mountains.
We continue on Berryessa Knoxville Rd for the next couple of miles to the Spanish Flat Country Store and up to the Visitors Center.
We enter through the exit gate at the south end of Oak Shores main entrance to the Acorn Beach picnic area.
The water levels are extremely low but the scenic value is still pretty high!
The next 6+ miles of rolling climbs on Berryessa Knoxville Rd leads us across the bridge to Pope Canyon Rd.
Pope Canyon Rd begins with a steep 8-11% climb followed by a short descent and another climb with grades of 6-8%.
The remaining 6+ miles of rolling terrain through the desert like landscape surrounding Cedar Roughs leads us out to the expansive Pope Valley.
The remaining flat gentle rolling miles through the canyon follows Pope Creek out to Pope Valley.
The valley floor opens up to expansive fields with pastoral grasslands and vineyards.
We cross through the valley vineyards on Pope Valley Cross Rd.
Chiles Pope Valley Rd takes us into Pope Valley for a stop at the store.
There is a new display of a stuffed local black bear inside the store along with the boar heads; it was shot for raging through the vineyards. 😦
We return on Chiles Pope Valley Rd for the short half mile climb out to Chiles Valley.
The next 3.7 miles of flat rolling terrain takes you pass the many vineyards, ranches, olive groves and open grasslands.
The one little hump pass the last vineyard is followed by a fun sweeping descent along Chiles Creek through Sage Canyon.
The road drops us back onto CA-128 W for the return along Lake Hennessey on Sage Canyon Rd to Silverado Trail.
The weather was absolutely perfect for this seasonal autumn ride around the lakes. Thanks to Bob H for leading!