Ride Report #47: Carmel Valley Road


October 7th, 2018

After a lot of route planning and watching the weather forecast, we decided to ride down to Paso Robles using mostly country roads and enjoy a long day-ride in this beautiful fall weather. The Sierra passes had started to get cold after the first snow there, so the plan was to explore the roads of the Central Coast. There were 5 riders in all – Akshay (BMW S1000RR), Shravan (Aprilia Tuono), Anil (Suzuki V-Strom 650), Gokul (BMW R1200GS Adventure) and me (Busa).

We first rode past Uvas reservoir till Hwy 152 and then took Hecker Pass towards the coast. It’s been a few years since I rode Hecker Pass. It was clear and traffic-free on a Sunday morning and we enjoyed pushing the bike through the twisties. We got to Hwy 1, rode it down to Monterey and took Hwy 68 to Salinas. We turned right on Laureles Grade, a fun short road with nice curves, but decent auto traffic, which got us to Carmel Valley Road (CVR).

The plan was to take the Chachagua Road detour off CVR and rejoin the route using Tassajara Rd. I had a sinus headache going on, so I decided to stay off the goaty Chachagua Road and meet the crew at the intersection of Tassajara & CVR. I got there, but they simply didn’t come, first for 15 minutes, then 30 minutes, now an hour. I rode up to the intersection of Tassajara & Chachagua waited a little more, still nothing. I then rode to the point where Tassajara turns to dirt. Didn’t see them, so I kept searching. I then rode out all the way to Hwy 101, where I finally got cell phone signal. For a brief moment I got a call through to Akshay and he told me everyone was OK; they had just gone way further ahead on the dirt part of Tassajara Rd.

Long story short, we regrouped back in Carmel Valley after they rode 40ish miles of dirt, while I did a couple of laps of CVR. I’m really starting to like that road, it reminds me a lot of Mines road. Too bad I couldn’t join the dirt adventure, but I did see some excellent pictures. And as long as everyone is safe, there is always the next time.

We had lunch at Kathy’s Little Kitchen (very mediocre) and made our way back home via the freeway.


Tassajara Rd runs to the Tassajara Zen Mountain Retreat  a meditation community run by the San Francisco Zen Center whose mission is to “to embody, express, and make accessible the wisdom and compassion of the Buddha.”

Here is video of the place –

I also found a video of Tassajara Rd on Youtube, made by the SF Zen Center –

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