Gravel riding with Tom Ritchey

Tom Ritchey Peter Johnson Jobst Brandt 1982 gravel ride

Tom Ritchey grew up in the hills west of Palo Alto. As a teen he joined Jobst Brandt on his insane dirt road adventures all around the Bay Area on public and private roads. In this modern day video, we see Ritchey continues this Bay Area road-on-dirt tradition. Peninsula cyclists will recognize the roads in this video.

The Ride – with Tom Ritchey from Tom Ritchey on Vimeo.

Another local legend, Ray Holser, kept diaries of those rides with Jobst and Ritchey, excerpts of which he now posts to the web.

July 11, 1982
Riders: Jobst, Ray, Ted Mock, Peter Johnson, Jan Causey, Bob ?, Tom Ritchey, Gary Holmgren
Route: Up Page Mill, down Alpine Road, Pescadero Road to Pescadero, Stage Road to Tunitas Creek Road, up Star Hill Road, down Kings Mountain Road.
Tire/Mechanical Failure: Ray/flat; Jobst/flat; Bob/flat

You can read Holser’s full full ride report here. Holser, by the way, is now known for his Bay Area ride guides that you’ve seen at many local bike shops in this area.

H/T to Western Wheelers Bicycle Club in Palo Alto, CA.


  1. Maybe some of those scenes are in the wilds of Sonoma County. Old Cazadero Road comes to mind. I haven’t seen a county-maintained dirt road in San Mateo County since the mid-80s.

    Unless you count Alpine Road, east side. The county refuses to abandon the road even though they do no maintenance; it has long since become a MROSD trail.

  2. I puzzled over this one, too. The wide dirt road shown is in better shape than I’ve ever seen Old Cazadero. Perhaps it’s the dirt portion of Montebello Road near Black Mountain.

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