I love riding my bike through UCSD. I’m not really sure why that is exactly, but I think part of the reason is because it reminds me of my own time at college and it’s more about reminiscing than anything else. But it could also be because of the wide variety of trails and roads to ride, which UCSD is full of. There are short little dirt trails in the trees between buildings, long and fast downhill streets, and tight and narrow walking paths that are fun to cruise in the off hours when nobody else is around.
I live about a mile and a half from the campus, so I’m always riding through there on my way down to the beach, up to Torrey Pines, or points north. It’s also a nice “destination” type of ride, meaning that it’s definitely interesting enough to do a full ride there – without being bored and wishing to be be riding somewhere else. Heck, I spent my college years bombing around the campuses of the University of Michigan and Wayne State University (in Detroit) on my Trek 850 mountain bike in the mid 1990’s so there’s a special kind of feeling I get when I’m cycling around any college campus. It’s in my blood! Or something like that…
We spent Christmas at home this year, and it ended up being a beautiful morning so I decided to grab my bike and my GoPro to do a quick 13 mile ride up to UCSD and back:
Without a doubt, that was the best ride I’ve ever had through the UCSD campus! There was literally nobody there, and it did seem a bit creepy and weird because of it. Normally this place is crawling with students and faculty, but here on Christmas morning it was just me and the vacant buildings. That emptiness made for a pretty good ride – I was able to cruise the sidewalks and smaller trails at much higher speed than I normally would have been able to, and it was kind of fun to so see how fast I could get around. I’ve certainly never traversed this campus faster!
Unfortunately, I was on my Specialized Allez Comp road bike, which was not the best choice for this type of riding. The wheels and tires are too delicate for sidewalk and trail bombing, so I did have to try and take it careful from transitioning from one section to the next. I did the entire spirited ride without getting a flat tire though, so that’s a good thing. I’ve certainly popped a tire or two riding around this campus before.