Winters Century


Thursday, October 17, 2013

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This out and back century route crosses the Benicia-Martinez Bridge and continues north through the flat lands of Fairfield to Vacaville. It goes along the valley floor on Pleasants Valley Rd and Putah Creek Rd into Winters for lunch. The return includes a short section on CA-128 back Pleasants Valley Rd.

From Holiday Highlands Park, we take Morello Ave to Pacheco Blvd for the short ride through the refinery on Shell Ave. We cross the RR tracks and take the Bike/Ped path across the Benicia-Martinez Bridge into Benicia. The bridge crossing has fabulous views of the glorious sunrise over the Carquinez Strait and the Franklin Hills!

Park Rd takes us down pass the refinery into the industrial area of Benicia along Industrial Way; this section of road has great views of the wetlands and marshes with the Mothball Fleet and Mt Diablo in the background.

We continue north on Goodyear Rd and Lopes Rd; the flat terrain on these roads parallels I-680 with scenic views of Grizzly Island. Lopes Rd takes us on the outer edge of a residential subdivision in Cordelia.

Gold Hill Rd crosses over I-680 onto Ramsey Rd; this is another flat road that parallels the freeway. There are a few horse ranches and old farm style homes scattered along the open fields around the levees.

We head east on Cordelia Rd out towards the open valley to Hale Ranch Rd for the short jaunt around Budweiser Brewery along Busch Dr.

Chadbourne Rd takes us over I-80 to Abernathy Rd; the next flat two miles goes along the rich agricultural fields around Suisun Valley.

Mankas Corner Rd and Waterman Rd runs along the NW edge of the residential subdivisions in Fairfield. Hilborn Rd quietly climbs up through the neighborhoods to Lyon Rd.

The rolling climbs on Lyon Rd parallels I-80; it’s a frontage road that leads us out to Lagoon Valley. We cross I-80 to Rivera Rd for a quick stop at Pena Adobe Park.

We continue on Cheery Glen Rd to Pleasants Valley Rd; the flat and rolling climbs for next 11.5 miles takes us along the scenic and gorgeous Vaca Valley and Pleasants Valley with the Vaca Mountains to the west and English Hills to the east.

Pleasants Valley is occupied by many orchards, horse ranches, nurseries and family farms with fresh eggs, local honey, fruits and produce.

We head east Putah Creek Rd; this road continues through Pleasants Valley with beautiful views of the blue waters of Lake Solano and Putah Creek. It weaves along the valley floor through the symmetrically lined orchards and vineyards to our lunch stop in Winters.

The second half of this route includes a short loop around Winters on CA-128. CA-128 cuts through the middle of town and heads west along the expansive valley floor through the vineyards, orchards and cattle ranches.

We turn on Pleasants Valley Rd for the bridge crossing over Putah Creek for the short climb up and over to hill. From the intersection at Putah Creek, we simply reverse our way back to Martinez. The flat rolling climbs on Pleasants Valley Rd takes us back to Cherry Glen Rd and Lyon Rd.

The ride through the residential neighborhoods on Hilborn continues onto Waterman and Mankas Corner.

We continue along the flats on Abernathy and Suisun Pkwy and make our way across I-80 to Cordelia for a quick stop at the Tower Market off Gold Hill Rd.

The flats along Lopes Rd and Goodyear Rd take us back onto Industrial Way in Benicia.

We continue along the oil pipelines on Park Rd up to the Bike/Ped path for the Benicia-Martinez Bridge crossing. We return on Shell Ave back to Pacheco Blvd and Morello Ave back to Holiday Highlands Park.

This is a great tandem route and a fantastic ride for anyone looking to complete their first century! The elevation gain is less than 3000 feet with plenty of flats and gentle rolling climbs. Come on out and try it!

Garmin Stats:
102.14 Miles with 2940′ of elevation gain
Max elevation: 441′
Max grade: 9%
Terrain: Flat to gentle rolling hills

Weather: Super! Sunny, warm & breezy. Temps ranged from the mid 40’s to the mid 80’s. Breezy SW-NW winds with 62% humidity

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Live life happy!

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