Tag Archives: trips

San Francisco/ Lake Tahoe Recap

It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost a week since we’ve been home from vacation. It’s been a slow week since a lot of my clients have gone back south for the winter but I know extra winter classes will be ramping up very very soon! (Not that I really want to think about winter right now…) Anyway, here’s a fun recap of my favorite things that we did while in California. One of my fabulous clients gave me a list of recommendations and we used Yelp a lot as well.

San Francisco

  • Golden Gate Bridge Bike Trip
  • Ferry Building Market- This place is fantastic. On Saturdays there is a wonderful farmers market but you can enjoy the shops and food every day of the week. Most things open at 9 a.m. with the exception of a few coffee shops (Blue Bottle Coffee!) When we went the weather was beautiful and it was fun to grab a coffee and some breakfast and sit outside and look at the bay.photo 2 photo 5
  • Twin Peaks- This is a fabulous place to drive and watch the sunset if it is not in the fog. If it is foggy you will not see anything but it wasn’t when we went so we got a beautiful view of the sunset. You can drive your car up (there also might be a bus stop nearby) and then hike about 50 feet to the top of the “mountain” and have a great view of the whole city. We brought a picnic but it turns out it’s not really a picnic place and we ate in the car. Go here but skip the picnic.
  • Off the Grid Food Trucks Picnic in the Presidio- Best food truck event ever. It’s the only one I’ve ever been to but I think it would be really hard to beat. In the park next to the Walt Disney museum, food trucks and local restaurants set up from 11-4. Bring a blanket, try some food and have fun! We got there around 2:30 and they started to run out of a few things but there was still plenty of food. Get their earlier if you don’t want to be denied a grilled cheese sandwich. They also have beer, wine and other beverages (like frozen mimosas) for sale. Don’t be scared of the lines they moved really quickly.
  • Muir Woods- This is a redwood forest right outside the city (about 30 minutes) that we visited on our way up to Tahoe. We almost didn’t stop and man that would have been a mistake. It’s 7$/ person to enter. There are nice paths to walk around and if you really wanted to make a day of it there are some longer, more serious hikes that you can do. We got there early around 10:00 a.m. and there was plenty of parking but by the time we left things were getting crazy. Go early and have a nice look at these GIANT trees!

Lake Tahoe

  • Road Bike Around the Lake- This is a 73 mile ride with over 3000 feet of climbing. Oh, and you start at 6000 feet elevation. Yep, I was tired after this one! There’s not a ton of road biking around Lake Tahoe so this is sort of the ride to do. We rented bikes from the Village Ski Loft in Incline, NV and were able to get some nice road bikes similar to what we ride at home. Great views! Apparently the local thing to do is to ride around the lake at night but I don’t get it…

  • Sand Harbor Beach- I think this place can get sort of crowded during the summer and on weekends but it was dead when we went there since it was the week after labor day. Crystal clear water and a very cold lake! There’s also a cool boardwalk you can walk along the shore on.

  • Campfire on Whale Beach- I forget if this place is called whale beach or nudist beach or maybe it’s not called either of those. Who knows. But we had some local knowledge (my brother in law and his girlfriend) and we were able to have a campfire on this cool beach. I don’t think you’re actually supposed to but it was fun anyway and no one seemed to mind because to get to the beach you have to hike 15 minutes down this giant steep path that’s really hard to find. We grilled some sausages, made s’mores and watched a beautiful sunset!

Golden Gate Bridge Bike Trip

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We just got back from our San Francisco/ Lake Tahoe trip and this activity was probably the highlight of my time in San Francisco. I’ll have a general overview of places to see and things to do tomorrow or Tuesday but first: Golden Gate Bridge biking!

Biking across the Golden Gate Bridge is probably on everyone’s checklist of things to do in San Francisco and it was definitely on ours as well. Even though we did the trip on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend it really never felt too crowded. There are bike rental places all over the city but we started our trip at the Ferry Building because on Saturdays there is a great farmers market there and we decided to check it out first and grab some snacks for the trip:pluots (a hybrid between a plum and apricot) and cinnamon roll biscuits.

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The ride starts flat along the coast and it is nice and flat. You bike past all the touristy areas like fishermans warf and the sea lions and then there are some nice parks and then great views of the bridge! Even though every tourist in the city is renting a bike to do this, don’t expect a super easy ride. There are some steep hills! Once on the bridge you ride two miles and then in another few miles you will reach the beautiful sea side town of Sausalito. It’s a great place to have lunch or do a little shopping. The best part? You don’t have to ride your bike back! There are ferries that take you and your bike back to San Francisco! It’s a nice way to get a boat ride in and see the city from the water.

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Sausalito is great but we decided to keep riding to the next town: Tiburon. This part of the ride wasn’t as great and we had to ride along some very busy roads. If I had known what it would be like I probably would have just stopped in Sausalito and waited for the ferry there. Tiburon is a smaller town but we still managed to find an ice cream place and ate ice cream while we waited for the ferry. When I saw how many people were trying to catch the ferry I was worried we might not make it on and have to ride the 20+ miles back on bikes. Boy was I wrong. These boats fit HUNDREDS of people and their bikes and they just stack up the bikes and pack them in. It wasn’t as chaotic getting the bikes back as I thought it might be.

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Tiburon

We had fantastic sunny weather for our bike trip but I know that’s not what the weather is always like in San Francisco. Check the weather before you go because the trip might not be as fun in the fog and cold…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cape Cod Weekend Fun

We spent the past weekend in Cape Cod and had a blast! If you’ve never been and live in New England (or anywhere really) it is well worth the trip. I think there is so much to do and I always wish I had more time there because there always ends up being something that I wish I got to do. Here are a few highlights from our trip.

On Thursday we spent the majority of the day on our bikes and ended up riding 45 miles sight seeing. We stopped in Wellfleet Harbor for lunch and then continued on back to Truro where we were staying. A dip in the ocean was fabulous after the long ride! The water was also really warm because we were staying on the bay side. The beaches aren’t as nice as they are on the Atlantic side but the water is warmer so I can’t complain too much.

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Friday was more biking. We rode to Race Point Beach and on a little path that weaved through the sand dunes. It was so cool! We stopped to walk across a giant (mile long) rock wall that goes to the very tip of the cape. The walk was long, it was hot, and I was so excited to have ice cream and go for a swim afterwards.

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Saturday was our last day and it was pouring rain so we lounged around, went into Provincetown,  and then decided to check out Truro Vineyards. For 10 dollars you can do a wine tasting of 5 wines and then take home a souvenir glass! It was really fun and we definitely purchased some bottles to bring home with us.

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Wedding Weekend and Old Port Half Marathon

Monday is especially hard after the fabulous weekend we had! The first half of the weekend we spent up at Sunday River to celebrate the marriage of our friends Jeff and Amanda. The rehearsal dinner was a great BBQ and pool party. On the day of the wedding Angus spent most of the day taking pictures with the rest of the wedding party so I took the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful day and went swimming at a nearby pond with my aunt and cousins.

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The ceremony was right on the slope of Lollapolooza and it was so cool feeling like you were right in the mountains! The reception was so beautifully decorated and I loved all of the little details. We had a lot of fun dancing. So much so that I woke up the next day sore!

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 This is the point where I started to regret signing up for the Old Port Half Marathon two days earlier. If you’re wondering how you missed all my training posts, don’t worry- you didn’t. I run once a week (about 4 miles) on Mondays and then I go and get iced coffee. That is how much I run. Every once in a while maybe I’ll do that twice in one week. The rest of my training includes teaching spin classes, cycling outdoors, circuit training, and swimming. So naturally I thought it was a good idea to try and run 13.1 miles.

I loved that the race course weaved along the familiar streets of the Portland penninsula. There were two major hills on the course, one going from Commercial street up to the West End, and the other going from Commercial street up to the East End. The hills were not the hardest part in my opinion. The first 8.5 miles were a breeze and then the course hits the back cove trail. It was SO sunny, and SO hot and you can see all the way around the 3 mile loop and it feels like it goes on forever. I’ve also run that trail about 10 billion times so it can get boring for me. The good part was that once you were off the trail there were only 2 miles left until the finish! As soon as I finished I took advantage of the free food that the race provided because I was STARVING for the last 3 miles. I was really happy with my time 2:06 (averaging 9:38 min/ mile). I wasn’t really sure what to expect since I’ve never run that far before and I was hoping for anything under 10 min/mile.

Over all I really enjoyed the race and will probably do it again next year. I know this race got a lot of bad reviews in the past because of the course and I know they previously ran out of water at the water stops. Everything seemed under control this year. The course was changed a bit, the water stops were not at the bottom of long down hills, and they didn’t run out of water or gatorade. 😀

 

Vermont Mountain Biking

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Last weekend we spent some time in Vermont and did some great mountain biking. Even though Angus lived in Vermont for an entire summer, I still don’t feel like I’ve spent much time biking there and this weekend was such a treat! We stayed with my parent’s friends in Stowe and had a great time! On Saturday we biked on some trails right in Stowe that I would have had no clue existed if we weren’t shown around. We rode in two different places: Sterling Valley and  the Hardy’s Haul trail. Both trails were super fun! Sterling Valley has some up hill but is not all up hill and we rode a great trail that had a bunch of (well made) bridges. Hardy’s Haul was ALL up hill for about three miles and then you come down a nice winding switchback trail called Kimmer’s. Or you can just go right back down the way you came. That would have been fun too.

After riding we enjoyed some of Vermont’s finest foods: Cabot cheese, Bob’s Bread, and Ben and Jerry’s! Oh, and a hot tub 🙂

On Sunday we drove to Kingdom Trails to visit their mountain bike trails. One of our wedding presents was a seasons pass to these trails and it was my first time ever going. When we got there I was sort of like “what on earth is this place?” because normally you park in a dirt parking lot in the woods and there is a little shack that takes your money and then you go ride on trails. You also don’t typically see many people.This was a little different because you parked in a little town that was FILLED with mountain bikers. I didn’t even realize that so many people biked. The riding here was great, even though you have to bike up a GIGANTIC hilly road to actually get to the trails. There are miles and miles of trails and beautiful views. There is also terrain for everyone, even if you’re a beginner. If you ever get a chance to go here, you should!IMG_1230