Less than a week after returning from our action-packed weekend in Calgary/Banff we were again taking the early afternoon edition of the UP Express to Toronto Airport, excited to set off on our trip to the US and much in need of a decent break!
Friday was a big travel day, with us boarding the train for the airport at 1:15 PM and finally arriving in our hotel in San Fran over 12 hours later. Our route took us through Salt Lake City airport where we had a relatively uneventful 2 hour stopover - the highlight would have been a delicious salted chocolate covered caramel we tried!
We kicked off Saturday in active style with Matt heading out for a 14km run and Van dropping in to a local crossfit box for a workout. We decided to head to a nearby diner to get some brunch and had hoped that we would be able to get away with a relatively inexpensive meal to set us up for the day. Unfortunately we didn't realise that the orange juices we ordered would end up being a third of the bill. Lesson learnt!
With our bellies full, we drove out to Fisherman's Wharf and picked up some rental bikes to join the other tourists making the trip across the bridge. The ride around the harbourfront and across the bridge was great - it was turning out to be a very active day as we also had a few hills to ascend (including a surprise hill after we got to the other side of the bridge). We stopped in Sausalito for a coffee and shared a giant chocolate chip cookie from one of the bakeries.
Next, we boarded a ferry back to Pier 1 on the Embarcadero. Following a tip from one of Matt's colleagues, we headed for Soda Popinski's. This involved some steep uphill riding/walking - our legs were sure getting a lot of exercise today. Matt had some bike trouble when the bungee cord that was attached to the rear rack managed to dislodge and get itself well and truly wound around/caught up in the rear disk brake. We tried to no avail to pull/push out/unwind the bungee cord but without any decent tools it was pretty tricky. Fortunately, some kind strangers with a multi-tool in possession saved the day and were able to get the offending cord unstuck.
Bike problems resolved and after a few more hills, we found ourselves at Soda Popinskis. One of the draw cards for this establishment was a $11 "spin the wheel" that offered a raft of mediocre drinks and a very few awesome prizes such as a bottle of champagne. Matty spun the wheel and the dial landed on two shots of coffee-flavoured tequila - deelish.
After the afternoon bevvie, we started heading back for Fisherman's wharf, stopping briefly at Lombard street (a famous street with 8 hairpin turns) on our way. We returned the bikes then strolled along Fisherman's wharf which was choc-a-block with tourists. We found the seafood stalls and had some fish, shrimp and chips, plus a combination seafood cocktail for dinner, washed down with a classy beer covered in a brown paper bag!
After quite a full-on day with lots of biking, we were feeling pretty tired by this point, so returned to our lodgings in Emeryville to relax for the rest of the evening.
A great day in an awesome city!