Archive for July, 2011

“Rig” Photoshoot

After a member shared photos from a previous photo shoot involving a “rig”, we had several Nor-Cal Goats members who were interested in having a giant metal pole suction cupped to their car!

The event started early, so that we could be out on-location just as the sun started to rise. The first shooting location was a roundabout in the housing development of one of the car owners. Using the 16′ pole on the suction cups the owner drive slowly around in circles while the photographer walked along stabilizing the camera. The results from this setup were nothing short of spectacular!

After shooting the first car, the group headed out of the housing complex towards a more industrial area (and to get some coffee/energy drinks). We found an empty Park-and-Ride lot that would work well. Like the other area, there were rows of trees that allowed for lots of motion in the background.

This location was fully lit by the sun, resulting in some complications when setting-up the rig, but after a couple of passes we started thinking outside the box a little…

The owner of this GTO has spent countless hours painting and polishing every little piece of his car. He also runs his car at the drag strip with the hood removed, so it only seemed fitting to take some photos showing off the engine bay.

Due to the time involved setting-up for these sorts of photographs the number of cars photographed was low, but the resulting images were well worth being awake at the break of dawn!

Weekend Cruise: Sunday

Yesterday we had a cruise through the South Bay, so why should today be any different!?! Today several Nor-Cal Goats came out for the drive over to Half Moon Bay for lunch. Again, it would have been nice to have a few more cars… but having fewer cars to be concerned about made leading the cruise more enjoyable.

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We headed out up Highway 9 to Skyline Blvd. and over to the “4 Corners”. The drive was fairly routine and quite enjoyable… like we experienced yesterday, Skyline is one of the favorite roads in this area for being so consistently fun. A drive along Skyline wouldn’t be complete without a stop-off at the 4 Corners (where Skyline crosses Highway 84). This is a favorite stopping point for cyclists (both motor and peddle varieties) and car owners… you are guaranteed to see some great eye-candy there!

After a short pit-stop we headed out down Highway 84 towards the coast. Without much other road traffic the descent was very enjoyable.

Rather than take Highway 84 all the way to the coast, which is the most direct route, we turned off onto Pescadero Rd. for real some twists and turns. Pescadero is a road that many really wish was closer to home. The pavement is well maintained and the corners flow together very well. At this point we couldn’t hold-back any longer, and started to push things a bit harder. Unfortunately, a large dump truck decided to spoil our fun and I had to slow down.

Before getting to the coast the group stopped off at the Arcangelli Grocery Co. so people could get some fresh baked bread (and so the old folks could visit the restroom… again…). This also gave us a chance to stop in at church (it was a Sunday after-all). To my surprise we even had a visitor before the service who stopped to ask us questions about our Pontiacs.

The drive up Highway 1 to Half Moon Bay was decent, but it would have been much better if the view wasn’t fogged-in. Traffic on Highway 1 made the drive unexciting, but at this point people seemed to just want to eat (there was a reoccurring request for Fish & Chips coming over the radios). We ate lunch at Ketch Joanne (and it seemed like everyone had Fish & Chips).

After lunch we headed back towards the Bay Area on Highway 92 and Skyline Blvd. The trip back to Saratoga was the much like the trip out… until we rounded a corner to find a fellow automotive enthusiast waiting at a stop sign. Most of the time when approaching an intersection on a cruise we’re dreadful of a slower vehicle pulling-out in front of us… but this one time we would have made an exception. Why? The car was a Bugatti Veryon Grand Sport (aka. a 1001HP, €1.4 million, monster)! It was even cooler when the Bugatti pulled-in behind us for the remainder of the cruise. Unfortunately the drive down Highway 9 was nothing like yesterday, and we got stuck behind slow moving cars.

Much like yesterday it was a great day out on the road with friends. Sometimes it would be nice if some of the roads were less populated, but overall it was a fun cruise… and we hope to do it again soon!

Weekend Cruise: Saturday

While most of the Nor-Cal Goats will be going on a cruise tomorrow, there were a few G8’s that wanted to do something today. Sunday the cruise is planned to go to Half Moon Bay, so we figured something towards Santa Cruz on Saturday would be fun. There wasn’t enough interest to do the “long route” (~94 miles total), so we did the “shorter than a marathon route” instead:

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A total of three G8’s arrived for the cruise, all GT models. While it might have been nice to have a few more cars, the fewer the number of people trying to stick together on the roads the easier (and more enjoyable to lead) the drive becomes. Given the simplicity of the route, and that everyone had walkie-talkies, leading the cruise was fairly enjoyable… other than the slow cars and cyclists that wanted to become hood ornaments.

The first road we drove was the Page Mill Rd. as an up-hill. We knew there were some crazy cyclists in the Bay Area, but this is a very steep road… and other than the kamakazi downhill afterwards… we saw no reason why anyone would ever want to ride up this road. Unfortunately, the cyclists are crazy… and there were quite a few on the road today. Having to take the time to look around corners for cyclists crawling uphill really slowed things down, but not nearly as much as getting stuck behind a slow driver! Home come whenever we drive on a road a slow car gets in the way?

Once we reached Skyline Blvd. the slow car moved out of the way and we were able to have some fun. Skyline is one of the best driving roads in this area… not because it’s fast or technical, but because it is consistently fun. The posted speed limit is high enough that you don’t get stuck vehicles crawling along. The road has just enough twists/turns to keep things interesting, without being so tight that tourists have to slow down. Today was no different, and Skyline was a pleasure to drive.

Out biggest surprise came when we turned onto Hwy 9 for the return trip towards Saratoga… there were no cars in front of us. For the entire 5 mile decent we had open road to push things as hard as we desired… and push we did! At one point the lead car even had to slow to keep from catching air over a crest. We can only hope that the drive tomorrow will be anything close to as much fun!

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