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Bike Ride Through Dry Creek Valley

This morning we had our friends Bob & Sissy over for breakfast at the Airstream. I made a frittata with some local farm eggs, chorizo, bacon, kale, mushrooms, tomatoes, and a little bit of pepper jack, and Sissy and Bob brought mimosas. It was a lovely morning.

Next, we packed up the bikes and headed about 45 minutes over to Healdsburg. We heard there was really great biking around that area and decided to check it out, and yes, it's true! Rolling hills, vineyards for miles, flowering trees…just beautiful. (Okay Tuscany…you'd better bring it in May!)


We parked downtown near a cool bike shop (Spoke Folk Cyclery) and they gave us a map of the whole area surrounding Healdsburg: Russian River Valley, Dry Creek Valley, Alexander Valley, etc. We headed over to West Dry Creek Road and intended to cross the river at Lambert Bridge Road but it was so pretty that we just kept trucking along and completely missed our turn.


After almost 8 miles into what we thought was a 12.5 mile ride (half up one side of the creek, half down the other side), we realized we still hadn't crossed the river. Oops. We got out the map/iPhone, realized where we were, turned around and rode several miles back and crossed at the bridge.


We stopped at the Dry Creek General Store (that also has a bar, and a deli with great food) and got a couple of paninis and big bottles of cold sparkling water and ate lunch out front (well, maybe it was dinner by this time…5pm). 


The bikes are definitely conversation starters so far. We ended up chatting with a handful of very friendly locals sitting outside drinking beer. Super nice guys (and perhaps a tiny bit tipsy). They wanted to know about the bikes, where we were from, where we'd been riding, if we'd tasted any wine yet, and then when they found out we'd be in Calistoga for the week, they told us about this amazing 12 mile hike they did earlier in the day with incredible views and a lava rock cliff…but they couldn't remember how they got there or where exactly the trailhead was. 🙂

This is a great place to stop for lunch, or a break (or just to chat with the locals).


Inside they have one of these old stamp machines on the wall. Anyone remember these?


This area is just gorgeous. More shots from the bike:



We didn't stop at any wineries today because we started kinda late and the winery tasting rooms all close at 5pm (and lunch/dinner was our priority this time), but I'm guessing we'll be back here sometime and we'll start earlier.


Oh yeah, here's our ride if you wanna see it on a map. (Notice that spur at the top…that's us being completely distracted by the gorgeous scenery):

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We ate the rest of the oysters we picked up yesterday down at Hog Island Oyster (kumamotos and Hog Island Sweetwaters, extra small) for dinner (at 9pm) and they were fantastic again. No surprise.


Look at the little guy who hitched a ride on one of the oysters! So tiny!


Work week starts again in the morning, but aren't you glad we don't blog about work all the time?


  1. richard landis richard landis

    I’m waiting for the day that you tell us that lunch was bologna on white w/mayo and lettuce—nah, that’ll never happen.
    How are the seats?? How long can you ride before you need a break??


  2. Nope. That’ll never happen. I had enough bologna as a kid. 🙂
    The seats are still surprisingly not terrible. We rode 17 miles yesterday (with a break for lunch in between) and it was just fine. We’ll keep doing rides around this length and hopefully be in good butt/seat/shape for Italy by then!

  3. Hazlyn Hazlyn

    Thank you for sharing pictures. This is one of my favorite place to visit. My honey spent time there a month ago as he is planting a vineyard here in The Dalles. Have a great trip and thanks again for the stories and pictures.

  4. I am writing this from Tuscany late at night. I do not think you will have worry about Tuscany bringing it. Northern California is amazing for scenery, food and wine but Tuscany has been bringing it for more than a thousand years. Every hill you climb brings a new and delightful surprise. The wine is amazing and is cheaper and better than anything in the United States. Everything else is much more expensive however. The towns in Tuscany and Umbria are so timeless that they will never leave your memory. It has been sixteen years since we last visited on our honeymoon and I will not let so much time lapse between our next visit to Italy. I have enjoyed catching up on all your posts in Napa. Ciao.

  5. Thanks, Doug! I didn’t figure we’d be disappointed. 🙂
    So glad you’re having a nice trip. I already know we’ll want to go back…before we’ve ever even been there! Let us know any good tips or spots you love that we shouldn’t miss. We’ll be cycling from Venice to Florence, and then doing a bunch of day trips from Florence while we’re there (about 10 days I think). Siena, Lucca, Cinque Terra…I don’t remember what I told you already (if anything)…so maybe we can chat via email after you guys are back.
    Safe travels!

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