Coffeeneuring 2021, Rides 4 and 5: SoCal Edition

Bluffs at Torrey Pines Gliderport, San Diego. 2 November 2021. Olympus XA2/Kodak Portra 160

Welcome to another installment about my Coffeeneuring 2021 Challenge! My fourth and fifth rides of the series were all done out of town. I was in Southern California for the first two weeks of November, and since I brought my Brompton, I knew I could partake in coffeeneuring there.

Both rides were “get coffee at a cafe” affairs. I definitely pondered having the full Coffee Outside experience of making coffee with a stove while staring at the Pacific Ocean, but practicality trumped romanticism. For starters, I didn’t have enough extra space to pack the kit. And since we flew down I couldn’t bring any fuel with me. 1 Sure, I could bring the stove and try to find fuel on arrival, but I didn’t want the hassle. I thought about shipping a stove and fuel in advance, but since the fuel would have to be ground-shipped I didn’t know if it would arrive to my destination in time.

Coffeenuering 2021 Ride 4 happened in San Diego on Tuesday November 2nd. I had a few hours to play with, so I rode from my hotel at Torrey Pines to the brutalist University of California-San Diego campus to grab a cup at the “Muir Woods Cafe”. From there it was a hop and a skip to the beach, but first I wanted to check out the internationally famous and brutalist Salk Institute campus. Alas, it was closed to the public. Torrey Pines Glider Port was just next door, high on a bluff above the ocean. I drank my coffee looking down at the water, watching surfers climb up and down the trail while catching occasional glimpses of paragliders. It was nice. I wanted to stay longer, but duty called. The ride was about five miles total.

Getting coffee at Muir Woods Cafe, University of California-San Diego. 2 November 2021. Olympus XA2/Kodak Portra 160

Coffeeneuring 2021 Ride 5 occurred a week later when we were in Los Angeles. I wanted to get in a decent ride on Wednesday November 10th. That’s not hard in LA, since the distances are so much greater than Portland! I took off from downtown and aimed for the eastern edge of Hollywood. I hoped to have a nice pause at MacArthur Park, but it was fenced off, “under construction”. After hitting up Freestyle Photo (to pick up a few rolls) I then headed east. Passing through the Sunset Junction district (where Sunset and Santa Monica Blvds. meet on the west edge of Silver Lake), I saw Intelligensia Coffee and decided now would be a good time for a caffeine fix. Intelligensia is a Chicago-based chain, which I first discovered on a trip to the Windy City in 2007. (Ironically enough, that was the trip where I used a borrowed Brompton.) I had been to this particular Intelligensia the last time I was in LA (February 2009) so it was nice to pause here again. I had some pour-over, then kept on riding east until I hit the LA River Bike Path, where I watched day turn into night. 20 miles total.

1 If we took the train down it would be no issue.


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