Ride to Casa de Fruta

The weather was pretty nice yesterday, and I had a 3pm appointment to be back for, so I decided to head out onto the freeway in order to get in the miles.  I’ve often told people that the Ninjette is fine on the interstate, so let’s put my money where my mouth is, shall we?

The interstate down to south San Jose was just fine.  I’m sure I went the safe and legal speed limit and got around the morning commute traffic without any trouble.

I hopped on the backroads in San Jose and started weaving south down into Watsonville.


Uvas Road is never very trafficked even on weekends; on a weekday, it’s practically empty.

Uvas Reservoir was lower than I’ve ever seen it this time of year; I guess we haven’t been getting very much rain.  Good for motorcycling; bad for the water supply (click here for a photo of the same spot in August).

Some fall color popped up as I got near Watsonville, which made me happy.  Fall color is such a crap shoot in the Bay Area; you have to take your pretty trees whenever you can find them, usually one-off.

I liked these graffiti’ed barns on Day Road in Watsonville.

The last time I was down in this neck of the woods, I went to Chitactac-Adams park instead of doing the little loop of fun roads up in the hills; today I did the opposite.

Roop Road is a fantastic road; twisty enough to be interesting but open enough to appreciate the scenery.  Also nearly empty on a Tuesday.

I’m not honestly sure if this next photo is on Roop or on Gilroy Hot Springs Road (I think it’s the latter, but in the interest of full disclosure, I don’t recall).  I took a bunch of photos in this section but they all came out blurry.  I blame ghosts. I don’t think this section of road is actually supposed to be haunted, but that seems more reasonable than blaming my photographic ability.

My ultimate destination for this ride was Casa de Fruta, a wonderful kitschy roadside attraction down near Pacheco Pass (which is haunted, thankyouverymuch).  I had lunch at Casa de Deli, wandered around Casa de Wine, and poked around the closed attractions at Casa de Choo Choo and Casa de Carousel (see, now you see why I like the place).

The main building:

Mmmm, garlic.  Maybe bottled garlic is more your thing?

Or olives?

Or maybe hot sauce?

After eating, I hopped onto the interstate and just took Highway 101 for the 55 miles back up to San Carlos.  It was my longest single stretch on the freeway on the Ninjette, and it really wasn’t too bad.  I definitely want to get a touring windscreen for the bike, but other than the buffeting, I was fine.  Speed wasn’t an issue (*cough*) and I had enough acceleration, too.  I kept trying to upshift out of top gear, but I think that was more of a nervous habit than anything else (I wasn’t near redline, even on the interstate).

Anyhoo, here are the ride stats.  I’m officially over a thousand miles for 2012 now, yippie!   *four digit mileage happy dance*

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