If you are travelling between the cities of Tracy and Livermore in California, chances are you will take I-580 to your destination. 580 takes you through the hills of the Diablo Range and shows you many of the windmills that dot the landscape. Say you want more: like roads that go up one hill and down another and with lots of twists and turns; and there are rolling hills as far as your eyes can see. Then, you should pick Patterson Pass over the interstate highway the next time you are in the area.
We drove through scenic Patterson Pass a few weeks ago and thoroughly enjoyed the leisurely drive on this less-travelled mountain road through Diablo’s hills. Unlike the highway this is a small single-lane road that hugs the curves of the hills that make up the range east of the Silicon Valley. Just when you think you are almost at the top of one hill the road snakes through the next hill and takes you to the other side and shows you more of the mountain chain.
Our drive started at the end of Mountain House Parkway and the half hour drive showed us yet another part of this mountain range in Northern California.Patterson Pass led us through a side of the Altamont Pass Wind Farm Substation and meandered around many hills pointing out scores of tranquil slopes, dozens of wind turbines and large stretches of uninhabited California. Some 20 minutes into the drive, we found ourselves at a beautiful vista point that serves us with views of the valley, more windmills and a part of Patterson Pass Road itself working its way up the hills.
NOW, is a great time for a drive through Patterson Pass thanks to the winter showers that have turned all those dry hills into green dollops of land. Go on a cloudy day –like we did — and you’ll be treated to a greater spread of shades of green because of the shadows the clouds cast on those rolling hills.
There may not be a whole lot of cars you’ll pass on the Patterson Pass but the road is narrow and sometimes steep. And for the most part there is no yellow line to keep vehicles coming from the other side, from getting too close to you. Drive with caution. And please be aware of bikers who are here to enjoy the ride and take in the beauty of the Diablo Range.
Linking to the meme–