35 milesThe goal today was to beat the predicted rain. It was a gloomy day through a non-picturesque agricultural area. So many workers performing backbreaking tasks to put food on our tables. Guadalupe was a slightly charming town along the route. Could have been in the heartland of Mexico. The land here is rich, the kale green, and the mountains brown.
The changing weather pattern brought with it headwinds from the south; yes, the direction we're traveling. Full disclosure requires that we have had precious few headwinds on this journey due to the generally terrific weather we've experienced. But this is not Week 1 with fresh knees and adrenaline flowing. I'm tired and sore and ready to be home after almost five months away. When the sprinkles started and the winds increased just as I was ready to tackle a long and steep climb called Harris Grade Rd.--you don't need a PhD to know that Grade in a road name is not good news--I took advantage of the SAG's fortunate location and bumped the final ten miles.
Michelle and Vicki, chef and sous chef, prepared our final van-cooked meal, Michele's famous pot roast, in drizzle. By the time dinner was served it was a fully-formed rain shower and we had the advantage of inside seating in our hotel lobby. Much of our map meeting involved the logistics of tomorrow's final day. I have made the decision not to ride. I will probably bump up to Santa Barbara and take the train to Ventura. The weather is questionable and I have never been to Santa Barbara, so I would like to see a bit of it.