Friday, November 30, 2012

Half

Half of what you ask?

Well, it's like this:
I had a few errands to do today, helping a friend out, some banking, some motor vehicle upkeep.  The day was decent, online chatter was all saying how everyone wished they could be out enjoying it.
I finally got on my bike at 4pm.  It was still dry, warm (or at least NOT cold) and daylight.

That lasted for half my ride.

I started on the 40 Mile Loop.  It's my fall back ride in the winter.  Of the 40 miles there is around 5 miles on roadway, the rest on dedicated bike paths, most well lit.  I can do this route in my sleep.

The daylight left as I was along the Columbia River, about the same time it started to rain.  No big deal, I had good lights and raingear along.  I had expected these conditions.

I had one friend who had talked a bit about possibly joining me, but that didn't come together.

It was miles, that's what matters right now.

............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........40..............0.............0..........0............40 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........835..............0..............0..........0.............835 YTD.........9346.........142...........20.........46............9554


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wearing out the bike

They just don't make hubs like they used to. Only 35,000 miles on this one.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE too smartphone

UPDATE:  
My rear hub on my rain bike (that is running the original wheels from my carbon bike) has been making some noise when I coast.  At first it was only when above 25 mph, it's gradually been getting worse, and recently has made racket anytime I coast, no matter the speed.  Today I brought a front wheel in to my trusted local bike shop to be trued, and had Mike look into the noise issue on the rear wheel.  I thought it might need lubrication.

Alas, there is a plastic bushing in there that is now in several pieces. That is the cause of the noise. Evidently the piece is not available by itself, but comes as part of a package that includes a host of other parts inside the hub.  The parts should arrive by the middle of next week.

Since it looks like more rain than dry in the next seven days I really wanted to keep the rain bike road worthy. My carbon bike is 10spd so it's Mavic Ksyrium Elite wheels and Zipp 404 wheels are not compatible.  I thought I might have to put in the cross wheels and tires that came on the bike when it was new, then I remembered that I had the Bontragger Select Aero wheels from my Marin.  They are 9spd, the same as my rain bike.  The cassette on the rear wheel isn't nearly as desirable as my Mavic Ksyrium Equipe wheel, but it will do for the miles I have planned for the next week.

So tonight I put in the Bontraggers, put in new brake shoes, and cleaned and lubed the chain.  I guess I'm ready to go get wet!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

40 miles plus a full moon

 I had invited a few Facebook friends to celebrate tonight's full moon with a short little night bike ride and a stop or two for an adult beverage. I had time to ride to the ride, plus do a lap of Portland's 40 mile loop.

The forecast called for rain later in the day, but after a few morning sprinkles the afternoon was dry. I finished up the 40 mile loop and had some time to spend before the advertised 6:30PM start for the full moon ride.  I rode out to Weidler Street and grabbed a fast food fish sandwich meal.

As the 6:30PM start time loomed it became obvious that I was going to be riding alone.  No problem, the roads were still dry, and though I didn't think there would be much fun in stopping for beverages, I did want to ride the route, just to preview for future full moon events.

The moon cooperated and showed it's full moon self.


It was a nice evening to pedal, cool but not wet, though a few sprinkles did fall at times.  The roads never got splashy.  I finished up the route quickly since I did not stop at the three planned sites.

I pedaled back to my starting point near Bridgeport Village and called it a night.



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........78..............0.............0..........0............78 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........795..............0..............0..........0.............795 YTD.........9306.........142...........20.........46............9514

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A change of plan

I was back on my home turf, and the weather was just about perfect, I had planned to add some decent mileage to my total.  Alas, installing a new thermostat in my pickup and other issues got in the way.  By the time I had it all under control it was too late to ride to my mom's to scratch a few things off her "honey do" list, so I loaded my bike and drove out to Hillsboro.  I cleared off mom's list, then went for a short ride in the Helvetia area until it got dark. I rode two miles to the autoparts store earlier in the day for a combined daily total of 24 miles.

Not much, but I'll keep chipping away at this.  Tomorrow is another day.

............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........24..............0.............0..........0............24 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........717..............0..............0..........0.............717 YTD.........9228.........142...........20.........46............9436

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A beautiful day for a ride..........

............and for a run as well.

Today I biked along as photographer and moral support for a few participants in Seattle Marathon.

As I rode down to the start it felt almost like deja vu.  Yesterday I was like a salmon swimming upstream in a river of runners (Seattle 5k).  Today I was like a salmon fry swimming downstream as I pedaled to join up with my friends.


As I made my way up through the masses it was not difficult to pick out my friends.
They may not be the fastest marathoners, but they may very well have the most fun!


The day was a bit cool with some light overcast. Perfect for running but a bit chilly for riding slow.


My friends may not have been the fastest participants today, but they weren't the slowest. (How would you like to be that guy just behind them as they crossed the timing strip?)


As an added bonus, at the finish festival I met RAAM veteran (and record holder) Cheryl Marek.

It was a fun pedal, surely my slowest average speed at 4.9mph.
My mileage varied from theirs because bikes weren't allowed on the full course.



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........17..............0.............0..........0............17 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........693..............0..............0..........0.............693 YTD.........9204.........142...........20.........46............9412

Saturday, November 24, 2012

How many miles would you ride for a donut?

 That's a question often asked. Today I did my part to answer that.

There was a ride starting from Renton that went to a bakery in Black Diamond. The ride started at 10, I had time to ride to the ride.

I started off down the Queen Anne hill at 8:30 AM and was pleased to have no rain.


I made my way across town on 2nd St, and felt a bit like a salmon. 





I understand that there was a 5k run happening.  I just stayed to the far right and made my way upstream. It wasn't too far before I was able to ride on the side of the road that was not set aside for the run.  I finally got through downtown and stopped for another photo as I crossed over the 12th Avenue bridge.


From then on I kept the pedals spinning so as not to be late. I arrived at Ron Regis Park, our meeting point, and 4 of us pedaled off.

After an enjoyable ride we arrived in Black Diamond, and area that gets it's name for the local coal deposits. I had worked up an appetite on the ride so wolfed down 7 cinnamon rolls and 2 glazed donuts.  That works out to about 5 miles per sweet thing.  About right!

We pedaled back the way we came.  I parted company with the others in Renton and continued on to Seattle.  The progress through downtown was a bit slow, but scenic. Holiday decorations were a happenin'.
The natural scenery was nice as well.


I finished off with a climb up Taylor, a good workout to wrap the ride with.

An excellent day on the bike!



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........73..............0.............0..........0............73 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........676..............0..............0..........0.............676 YTD.........9187.........142...........20.........46............9395

Friday, November 23, 2012

Misery loves company

 Unless the company is miserable.

Well, maybe miserable isn't the best term.  I never heard a complaint, I just didn't see too many smiles.
Proper winter gear makes all the difference between fun, and barely tolerable.

My friend and I had a few errands to run today and we thought it would be good to bike to them.  We started off in a steady rain.  The first stop was Costco, where we made our rounds of the folks hawking their products and offering samples.  My friend is still decked out with decorations on her helmet and picked  up a lot of comments and compliments. We picked up some of the swag being offered by Costco then headed back out to the rain.

The second stop was at the packet pickup for the Seattle Marathon.





We milled around the expo (demos and shopping opportunity)  then made our way back out to the rain again. We made our way to the waterfront then northward toward the Chittenden Locks.  When we reached the ship canal trail we took that east until we started up the easiest route toward the top of Queen Anne.

A mere 20 miles today, but it was enough.



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........20..............0.............0..........0............20 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........603..............0..............0..........0.............603 YTD.........9114.........142...........20.........46...........9322

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Time

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.

Today I had a lot of time, just not when I needed it.  My friend and I were going to join some folks riding around Lake Sammamish.  The ride was listed for a 10AM start from Marymoor Park, finished in time for Thanksgiving festivities.  With a 10AM start, and just under 30 miles away I knew I had time to ride to the ride and get some bonus miles in.  My friend was not up for a fast dash early in the morning so she planned to drive to the start and meet me there.

I started at 8AM and  made my way off Queen Anne hill carefully, then got on the Burke-Gilman and pedaled hard. I reached the end of the B-G and continued the quick pace along the Sammamish River Trail.  I heard a text message come into my phone, but did not stop to pick the message up.  I needed to keep moving to arrive in time for the ride. (was shooting for 9:45AM) I rolled into Marymoor Park at 9:40, arrived on the far end meeting point at 9:47. As it ended up, the text message was telling me that the ride time had been moved up to 9:30AM.  The main group was gone, but three of us johnny-come-lately folks teamed up to ride together.  We rode around the lake following the planned route, just 15 minutes after the main group.

There wasn't a drop of rain today, and no wind to speak of.  A perfect day to ride.  The ride along the lake offered many nice photo options, but my camera was packed in a ziplock bag and buried in my pack.  I didn't want to delay the group by stopping to get all that out.

We finished up the lake loop and went for a tuna bagel.  Thanksgiving festivities are coming later this afternoon and with the slower lake loop I wasn't sure I could get back to Queen Anne via bike in time to get cleaned up. My pickup was sitting right there............  I loaded my bike up and we drove back.

No rain, a good ride.

............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........52..............0.............0..........0............52 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........583..............0..............0..........0.............583 YTD.........9094.........142...........20.........46...........9302

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

It's only water

 That's what I tell folks who balk at riding when it's raining.  Today it was time to walk the talk.  The day started decent enough, the roads were even dry, but by the time I got geared up and ready to ride, a steady rain was falling. Along with the moderate rain was a brisk wind, probably in the 20-25 mph range.  I pedaled along the water's edge, feeling the full brunt of headwind and the sting of rain in my face.  We were having fun now!

video 
(a normally calm Puget Sound whipped to a frenzy by wind)

 One benefit of a blustery day and a late start........ not too many other bikes out today.



I made it out to Lincoln Park mostly on bike paths, then circled back to Queen Anne, a bit more on roadways.  Seattle has a lot of concrete roads. The expansion joints in them are sometimes dangerous for skinny bike tires to cross, made even more so when they are wet.  The puddles of water everywhere making it difficult to see surface irregularities made it even more challenging.

I did make it back to Queen Anne with no more trouble than an occasional  wheel spin when going up some of the steeper grades.

As luck would have it, after several hours of non-stop rain, the clouds broke and patches of sunshine popped out as I was getting out of my bike gear.

As odd as it might seem, it was a fun and adventuresome day to be on a bike!


............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........40..............0.............0..........0............40 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........531..............0..............0..........0.............531 YTD.........9042.........142...........20.........46...........9250


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

An Alki Run

It has been a few wet and blustery days, well over 2" of rain yesterday.  This morning was remarkably nice.  I decided I should be on the bike.  I was tempted to ride the carbon  bike, but decided that with all the rain yesterday there might very well be some puddles around.   I did wear my goretex jacket, more for warmth than anything else. 

I took the rain bike and headed toward Alki Point. I made my way down Queen Anne and rode along the canal and over the bridge to West Seattle. Today was about 50% blue sky as I started, but by the time I rode the 15 miles to Alki it was almost completely clouded over.  I didn't bring my camera, but did find this photo of the Alki Lighthouse that someone took on a sunny day.


I took in the view for just a few minutes, then began my way back.  By the time I was half way back it began to rain.  I climbed back up Queen Anne via the south side and closed the ride off.  I managed to get back without getting wet or cold.  It would have been nice to get a few more miles, but 27 is better than nothing.



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........27..............0.............0..........0............27 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........491..............0..............0..........0.............491 YTD.........9002.........142...........20.........46...........9210

Monday, November 19, 2012

A blustery day

There are always reasons to not want to ride, today's reason was "too wet, too windy".  I did however venture out to get some new batteries for my rain bike's rear blinky and one for it's speedometer.  It is never quite as bad out as it seems to be when sitting in the warm house looking out the window and seeing the rain fall, and hearing it hit the roof and windows.  Today was no exception.

As I pedaled out I thought "gee, this isn't so bad", and in about 5 minutes as I was on the cusp of dropping over the south edge of Queen Anne hill, a bald eagle drifted by, not more than 50 ft away from me. Yup, it turned out to be a pretty spectacular ride.

........and I got my batteries too!



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today............3..............0.............0..........0............3 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........464..............0..............0..........0.............464 YTD.........8975.........142...........20.........46...........9183


Sunday, November 18, 2012

TuTus and Tiaras

The Birthday Girl
Today was the second annual TuTu and Tiara Ride, in celebration of friend Julie's birthday.  The morning started out wet, Wet, WET.  By the time we got to Renton, the starting location for today's 53km ride, the rain stopped.  7 of us braved the weather in TuTu's and tiaras.


It stayed dry for the first 15 miles.  We even had a little bit of sunshine, though not much. A tailwind helped push us along, and dried the roads.  We rode north to Madison Park then mindful of a predicted wet afternoon,  turned around without much time wasted and pedaled back toward Renton.  Our solidly social pace on the way northward with a tail wind turned a bit slower on the return.

photo by Scott B.
 We all eventually made it back to Renton and were joined by 4 more friends who chose not to bike with us today. The nice Irish Pub, A Terrible Beauty was our destination, where we celebrated with chocolate fudge upside down cake, a brew or two, and a nice warm meal.





We didn't quite make the full 53km, one of our members was struggling and we cut out a turn through Seward Park.  We thought we might go back out late tonight for an additional 2.5 miles with lights, but alas, it is pouring rain, and as my mother likes to remind me, "you DON'T HAVE TO ride that bike".  We didn't.



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........30..............0.............0..........0............30 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........461..............0..............0..........0.............461 YTD.........8972.........142...........20.........46...........9180

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Wet but not wild

 Today 5 of us went out for a 50 mile ride around Lake Washington on what was predicted to be a wet and blustery day. We got the first 15 miles in before it started to rain.  It never rained hard, and was never very windy. We pedaled a relatively social pace, we even stopped for a 45 minute lunch.  Two of the riders had flats, but both on locations far from bad.  In fact, one of them right in front of a bike shop, that allowed us to come in out of the rain and use their work stand and floor pump.  :-)

We came prepared for rain, so it wasn't too bad.  It wasn't cold.

Ya, another good day on a bike! ;-)



............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........50..............0.............0..........0............50 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........431..............0..............0..........0.............431 YTD.........8942.........142...........20.........46...........9150

Friday, November 16, 2012

Deja Vu

The Seattle forecast today was for rain beginning by afternoon, with hard rain and wind on tap for the weekend.  Yuk, just knew it was going to happen before I would get off my duff and ride my 10,000th mile this year.  Oh well, it's not so bad once you get your head around setting foot out the door.

I figured I might be able to get some miles in this morning before the weather turned.  I took a look at my list of recent routes and decided to re-ride the recent trip to Edmonds.

Today I rode it solo.

Once again it was a case of racing the rain. 

There was a bit of fog this morning, but by the time I got out the door it was beginning to clear. The chill in the air reminded me that it is no longer summer. I put my goretex jacket on, not for protection from rain, but rather from windchill.  I pedaled hard enough to generate a little warmth and just kept up a nice effort.

I didn't take the time for a social lunch, riding solo there wasn't much social to be had, and I figured if I just kept riding I'd have a better chance of beating the rain and staying dry.

Yes, today was another case of racing the rain, and today I won that race!


............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........51..............0.............0..........0............51 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........381..............0..............0..........0.............381 YTD.........8892.........142...........20.........46...........9100

Thursday, November 15, 2012

3 Strikes

 I had a few errands to run today, they could be done by bike, and the sun was shining.  I left the rain bike in the garage and took the carbon bike! My errands could be done rather closely to home base, but that wouldn't be as much fun.  I was looking for party supplies, so googled "party supplies" in Woodinville. I figured I'd get at least a nice 50+ mile ride out of it.  I mapped the three locations for party supplies that google supplied and took off.  There was some traces of morning fog as I took off, and a chill in the air.  That soon disappeared and left gorgeous blue skies.

I got to the first location and found nothing fitting the bill.  It seemed they no longer occupied the space in the little strip mall.  No problem, location number two was close by.  Alas, that location also had no such business.  I now pedaled toward location three.  I guess I should learn my lesson about mapping routes without looking at the elevation profile.   I Pedaled up a significant hill, only to find a neighborhood of palatial homes, and no party supplies.  Maybe they had good parties, but no supplies!


Having struck out on all three options, I headed back to downtown Woodinville on the verbal "there's got to be a party supply place in that mall".  Sure enough, despite google not knowing about it, there it was.  I picked up my supplies and continued on. In fairness to technology, this might have been user error.  The actual location was VERY close to the first location I rode to.

I followed a previous route to Issaquah, then over the I-90 Path across Mercer Island and toward Seattle.
Back on the mainland, I turned north toward UW and the familiar Burke-Gilman Trail.  I made my way back up Queen Anne and could not resist taking a photo of the view from there. Here looking E-NE







(Just a note for those not familiar with gpsies.com embedded maps, You can click "more" in the upper right corner and go to a fully functional map, in a separate tab, with varied views, ability to zoom, etc)

Once again, another good day on a bike!

............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........74..............0.............0..........0............74 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........330..............0..............0..........0.............330 YTD.........8841.........142...........20.........46...........9049

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A day of riding

I joined 12 members of the Cascade Bicycle Club for a ride from Red Hook Brewery in Woodinville to Snohomish and back.  Having not looked at a map, and  no cue sheet available I didn't have a clue where we were going.  I was going to be at the mercy of the group today. ;-)

Since the ride began at 10AM I had time to ride to the ride.  I took the easy way down Queen Ann and rode to Red Hook Brewery via the Burke-Gilman Trail and the Sammamish River Trail. It made for a nice 25 mile warm up.

I arrived at the ride start respectably early.  After a few words from our ride leader we were off.  The first few miles where in the suburban streets. Our leader evidently hadn't ridden the route recently (and not navigating via gps) as we had a few missed turns and had to backtrack.  There was even a short section of ridable gravel path.  I was beginning to wonder what I had gotten myself into. Once we got out into the rural roads I was beginning to wonder even more. The roads had no paved shoulder, and often no fog line.  While legal to ride two abreast, it just frustrates drivers to do so as they approach.  Despite calls of "car back" by the majority of our group, there were 3 riders in particular that would be out near the center line.  I'm all for taking the lane when it's appropriate, but this wasn't one of those cases.  It seemed to be just a case of  "I don't care" by these members of our group.

Along with this behavior was a lot of "accordion action" by the group.  I finally just found it easier to stay well back of the group.

We arrived in Snohomish, a quaint little town on the banks of the Snohomish River with a celebrated history. We came in via road, but I did notice a multi-use path along the river.  I don't know how far, or where it goes.


After getting our instructions as to a re-meeting time, we scattered for lunch in a variety of local eateries.












 Following our lunch stop our ride leader had a talk with the group concerning the side by side riding. She reminded all that a call of "car back" means to get into single file.  5 riders decided to add bonus miles by riding out to Monroe. The rest of us shoved off and rode back toward Red Hook.

Our little group now was composed of riders who rode single file when appropriate, they rode a good pace but they still braked on decents and granny geared up hills.  Argh!

Our group still accordionned  a bit so I was off the back.  At one point, with a hill ahead of us, I could no longer force myself to brake as we descended toward it.  I let the bike roll and let my momentum carry me up the hill.  As my new found friends were inching up the hill, I roared past them.  I waited for them at the top.  There were some comments on me being a strong hill climber. Ha!  Not so much.  I just don't brake on the approach. Momentum is my friend.

We made it back to Red Hook in the early afternoon. The rest went in to have a post ride debriefing, I of course was  not finished riding yet so said my good byes and pedaled on.

I picked up the pace and made my way back to Queen Anne.  I finished up with 91 miles and normally would have gone for some bonus miles to bring me to 100, but did not today as I had an evening ride planned that would easily allow me to reach that goal.

At 6 PM Cascade Bicycle Club had a lights and reflector demonstration.  I have been interested in this event since it's inception several years ago. I rode down from Queen Anne and made my way to the Cascade Bicycle Club headquarters.

Riding the Burke-Gilman Trail at night is an adventure.  Despite good lights, I normally would be riding slower as it is hard to pick up trail irregularities and curb cut locations at speed.  Tonight I was in luck.  An obvious local commuter with knowledge of the trail whistled past me.  I picked up the pace and followed him about 15 feet back as we traveled at 20-22 mph.

I arrived at CBC in plenty of time for the event. ;-)

It was a sparsely attended event, but fun and informative.  Plus, local bike shops had donated some good bike bling  I picked up some reflective arm bands, reflective buddy flaps, and some reflective stick ons.

Following the event I rode back up Queen Anne.  The only problem was that I had inadvertently deleted the easy climb up route from my Garmin when I had loaded the route to Cascade headquarters.  I knew I was not ready to navigate from memory, especially in the dark.  I also knew that I did not want to ride up the 25%+ of 4th St.  So I moved over the hill a bit and made my way up via the hunt and peck method. I just kept heading toward those lighted radio/tv towers.

I arrived just as my friend came home from a long day.  Perfect timing. It was a long day on the bike, but not a drop of rain. It was nice to finally ride a 100 mile day again.

A good day on a bike.
 
............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today..........112..............0.............0..........0...........112 Jan..............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb.............428............108...........0.........24...........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22...........831 April.........1010..............0.............0...........0..........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0............1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0............1500 July..........1558..............0.............0..........0............1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0...........0..............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0...........0..............730 Oct............844.............0.............0............0.............844 Nov...........256..............0..............0..........0.............256 YTD.........8757.........142...........20.........46...........8965

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

racing rain

I am still in Seattle. I took a look at the Cascade Bicycle Club's well populated daily ride list and noted that there was a ride beginning near me and riding out to Edmonds for lunch and back.  The forecast called for an increasing chance of rain as the day progressed, and though grey skies prevailed, it was not currently raining.  Looked like a perfect fit.  I rode a gently descending route down from Queen Anne.

video


Once off the hill I crossed the Fremont bridge and headed toward Gasworks Park, the starting point of today's ride.

I arrived just in time for the ride, though not as early as I had hoped. (hey, taking video of the view takes time!

12 of us made our way out west on the Burke-Gilman Trail.  We jumped off the trail before too long and from then on I was on a route I had never been on before.  It is always nice to ride in a new area.  The
pace was true to the posting, generally about 14 mph.  Even that rather slow pace proved to be a little fast for one of the riders and about 5 miles into the ride that person turned back.

The rest of us continued on our way to Edmonds.  The roads were wet, and in some stretches they were littered with leaf debris making them slick.  We all managed to navigate safely, in large part because the ride leader did a good job of advising the group when we were about to enter a section of potential problems.

We arrived in Edmonds and spent 45 minutes having a tasty lunch at The Red Twig Cafe.  While there we lost our race with the predicted rain as the sky began to drip.  I took a cue from the locals and took the raingear out of my pack and put it on.  Good thing I did.  We had rain falling for the remainder of the ride.  I was comfortable, good clothing options always make it easier. We pedaled along the shores of Lake Washington on the Burke-Gilman and came back to Gasworks.  The rest of the group loaded bikes in vehicles and took off toward warmer and drier locations. I wanted to get a few more miles, mostly because I have not been riding enough given that the year end is closing in, and I still have a few miles to go! I turned around and backtracked on the Burke-Gilman to the University of Washington just to add a few miles  I turned around and followed the B-G to the Fremont Bridge then made my way back up Queen Anne via that gentle route I had taken down earlier in the day.

Despite the rain it was a good day on the bike.



   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........51..............0.............0..........0..............51  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov...........144..............0..............0..........0.............144
 YTD..........8645.........142...........20.........46............8853 

Monday, November 12, 2012

tourist

I guess that's a fancy word for just riding around looking at things.

My mom was leading a group of seniors from Hillsboro on a field trip to see the King Tut exhibit in Seattle.
I'm still here three weeks into a little west coast adventure.
It all aligned into a perfect excuse to meet mom for lunch.
I rode down Queen Ann to Seattle Center and had lunch with mom.  :-)

I arrived a bit early, so I rode around Seattle Center a bit and around the neighboring streets too.

After lunch I rode down to the waterfront and made my way out to Alki, then turned around and rode random bike friendly streets northward.  I ended up at the Hiram  M Chittenden Locks. The larger lock was closed for it's annual maintenance.
Note the workers in the lower left.

I crossed the pedestrian way over the ship canal and worked my way along Shilshole Ave.  I was riding without a route on the gps and got a bit twisted. Luckily I soon saw the antennas on top of Queen Anne and kept making my way toward them.  Along the way I rode by a train that was carrying several small airliners.


 I have never seen trains carrying planes before.  I don't know if they were being shipped from, or being shipped back to Boeing, but suspect they might be heading for scrap/salvage?

I finally got on familiar ground and began following the Burke-Gilman trail, though farther west than I've been on it before. When I got to the Fremont Bridge I crossed back over the ship canal.  Instead of climbing the challenging 4th Street, I made my way to 3rd Ave W.  It provided a 10-12% climb up Queen Anne instead of the 24% of 4th Ave N.  I was trying to find the circuitous but scenic route that a few of us rode a month or so ago, but didn't quite do that right. No matter, it was still a good ride.

No rain, surprisingly.



   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........36..............0.............0..........0..............36  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov............93..............0..............0..........0..............93
 YTD..........8594.........142...........20.........46............8753 

Friday, November 9, 2012

snowflakes

Last weekend I was riding in 80 degrees and sunshine, today 35 degrees and snowflakes.  What a wakeup call!

I am at a conference in Bend and needed to move my pickup to the Redmond Airport. I drove to Redmond, parked my pickup, then biked back to Bend.  There was about a half inch of snow on the ground in Bend this morning but it mostly melted away by mid-afternoon. I waited until 3PM to make my move.  A time and temperature display indicated it was 35 degrees.

Wind was calm, and I was dressed for cold weather, so it wasn't too bad.  There were a couple of light snow showers but no accumulation as I made my way back. iT came as no surprise that it was slightly uphill back this way.  I've cycled to LaPine several times and though there is no serious climbing between Bend and LaPine, by the time you get there you are at nearly 4300 ft, only 500 ft lower than Santiam Pass.

Not quite as fun as pedaling around palm trees in warm weather, but it sure beats riding in cold rain.



I continue my low mileage ways.  I wonder if I will ever get my 10,000 mile year in before I run out of year?
I'll have to up the output if I am to reach that goal.

   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........16..............0.............0..........0..............16  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov............57..............0..............0..........0..............57
 YTD..........8558.........142...........20.........46............8717 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The sun is shining!

California is noted for sunshine, but the San Francisco area is often more noted for fog and cooler weather. Luck was upon us today as San Francisco is experiencing record warm temperatures.  The expected high is near 80 degrees, and not a cloud in the sky.

The day got off to a bit of a rough start.  I had spent many hours researching a route to ride that would give us a nice overview of the city and it's sights while keeping us off some of the steeper hills.  I had mapped a route that looked like it would fit the bill and stored it.  Upon arrival last night I made sure phones, cameras, and GPS were all charged.  As I went to load the route the Garmin would not work.  It seemed to be completely dead. The computer wouldn't see it, no screen display, no nothing. The GoPro was not powering up. It's been acting up a bit lately and decided to really start causing problems today.  My friend's phone wasn't charging, and mine always has 4g connection problems and internet access is spotty at best.

We had planned to start our 38 mile pedal at 8:30 AM.  It was 10:30 before we finally got on the road, handwritten cue sheet for a last minute modified course, and a portable battery charging device with assorted connection cables in hand.

Within the first mile the Garmin finally decided to start functioning. Sure was glad about that.  I haven't had to navigate via a paper cue sheet in years, and wasn't looking forward to the prospect.

As we pedaled out there were many things to see.




We did far more sight seeing than biking. Never planning a LONG ride, our late start meant we shortened it up even more.


We made our way to the Embarcadero, and followed that to Fisherman's Wharf were we had an early lunch. We spent a little time there playing tourist.





One of our "must do's" was to ride across the Golden Gate Bridge, and after a stop at Ghirardelli Square, a ride through Marina Green Park, and passing through Crissy Field we made our approach.



We spent a long time on and around the bridge There were a lot of other people enjoying a ride or walk across the bridge.  To minimize conflicts today bikes were limited to the west side while pedestrians were relegated to the east side.











 It is the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge and before we left we got jerseys to commemorate the visit.




We continued on to The Presidio and looked around briefly.  It reminded me a lot of Oregon's Fort Stevens.

We had thought that riding to China Beach would be a good goal today before turning back around.  However, we turned toward Frankenart Mart, in the mistaken idea that today was "free hotdog day".  We were one week early, but enjoyed riding through the neighborhoods.


With the day approaching and end, we decided to start working our way back to the bike rental facility where our bikes we due back by 6PM.  We knew which direction we needed to go, if not the best route. We headed east staying on designated bike routes.


 We saw many interesting things as we pedaled along.




We made pretty good time on our cross city pedal.  We determined that we had a little time to spare and pulling out the map we carried we decided that we could take in the famed Lombard Street on our way back.
We arrived at the top of Lombard Street as the shadows began to get long.


It took a bit of arm twisting, but I finally got my friend to join me on a roll down this famously twisted road.









 After riding down the hill we visited with the gardener a bit.  Surprisingly, this is not a public park, but a labor of love tended to by a local resident using personal funds.  While there, we heard many stories of unusual occurrences, and even had a chance to witness one.

video

As we pedaled our last few miles it was clear that we didn't get to see everything on our list.

Those things will have to wait for next time.

 As is nearly always the case, it was a great day to be on a bike!



   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today...........21..............0.............0..........0..............21  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov............41..............0..............0..........0..............41
 YTD..........8542.........142...........20.........46............8701 




Saturday, November 3, 2012

Staged

As the sun rose I found myself well on my way southward.

 I wasn't bringing my bike, but had a plan to take care of that.

I rented bikes for my friend and I online prior to arrival at Bay City Bikes.  The bike, while not quite what I would want for riding a long distance, would be serviceable for the planned sight seeing.

 It was described as:

"ALUXX SL-Grade Aluminum. Advanced-Grade Composite fork, Alloy OverDrive Steerer. Shimano Tiagra, 10 speed shifters - Shimano Tiagra 12x30, 10-Speed cassete. FSA Omega, 34/50 crankset. FSA Omega, 34/50 Crankset.

Bikes comes with: cyclecomputer, extra tube, pump and choice of pedals."

The choices for pedals weren't going to work for me, so I arranged to have my pedals, and my friend's pedals installed on the rental bikes so that we could wear our bike shoes.

Upon arrival, I was surprised to see both bikes set up with Sora shifters rather than Tiagra.  Triple cranks instead of the FSA double, Sora deraileur, not Tiagra, and an aluminum fork instead of composite.

I commented to the counter help that they probably needed to update their descriptions on the website. He acknowledged that but did not offer a discount. I didn't press him for one as the bikes would work for our purpose, and they were very patient with our fussiness with saddle position.

The bikes will be adequate for the planned ride tomorrow.

Just a few miles back to the hotel.

   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today............3..............0.............0..........0...............3  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov............20..............0..............0..........0..............20
 YTD..........8521.........142...........20.........46............8680 

Friday, November 2, 2012

Anothet short mileage day

I am busy with last minute preparations for a road trip. (expect a ride report from a warmer climate on Sunday) I did however take a short ride late this afternoon. Just a little ramble around the Queen Anne neighborhood of Seattle. 17 miles is all, but it was dry. Photo posted tomorrow.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE too smartphone

UPDATE:

Alas, internet access had been limited. 

The ride was just a ramble around Queen Anne, much like my state of mind.  I didn't have much time and couldn't figure out a good destination to ride to, so I just puttered around, and over, the Queen Anne hill of Seattle. After several days of rain it was nice to just pedal around without raingear. The sky was heavy and grey, but kept the drips to itself.



   ............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle.....total Today..........17..............0.............0..........0..............17  Jan.............105.............34............0..........0............139 Feb...........428............108.............0.........24..........536 March.........809..............0.............0.........22..........831 April........1010..............0.............0...........0.........1010 May..........1000..............0............20........0.........1020 June.........1500..............0.............0..........0.........1500 July.........1558..............0.............0..........0..........1558 Aug...........531..............0.............0..........0............531 Sept..........730..............0.............0..........0............730 Oct............844.............0.............0..........0.............844
Nov............17..............0..............0..........0..............17
 YTD..........8518.........142...........20.........46............8677