Friday, February 28, 2014

What a difference 24 hours makes!

Well, as expected, yesterday was the bad  weather day. It was sunny on Wednesday but I could not ride.  Yesterday I had all day to ride but had cold rain as Carol and I pedaled a few miles in Portland.   This afternoon I'm driving to Seattle for Bike Expo so my time is limited, but it is sunny again!

 You know the sayings: "strike while the iron is hot",  and "make hay when the sun shines".  I'll add that one must "bike when the weather is nice"!  I hoped on the fixie and pedaled a few miles in the Springlike weather.

Just wandered around the neighborhood, and stopped for a sausage and egg McMuffin. ;-)

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........16................0..............0...............0............16 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 578...............0..............0...............0............578 Total..........1288...............0..............0...............0...........1288

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Perfect Timing

Yesterday was a gorgeous day.  A bit of wind in the Portland area due to east winds in the Columbia Gorge, but mostly sunny skies and reasonable temperatures.  Unfortunately, I didn't have time to ride a bike. Tomorrow is predicted to be nice as well.   Today was 38 and raining as I started out.  My friend Carol joined me with perfect timing to see if we could adhere to Rule #9.

Our plan was to ride Portland's 40 Mile Loop.  My Randonneur friends like to say that there is no such thing as bad weather, just poor clothing choices.  Carol had tire issues as well.  There is very little worse than having multiple tire problems during a cold, rainy ride. I was riding my fixie so had little along that could help with her Presta tube, as my fixie has Schrader valves.  Before we made it half way around Carol decided to pull the plug for today. Luckily she had an adapter for her Presta stem so we could use my pump to add air from time to time.  She had little interest in patching the tube. We turned around and pedaled back toward Riverside Park.


It had rained nonstop so far, but as we got back to Riverside Park to her vehicle, the rain stopped.  Carol loaded her bike and headed for home. I was warm and comfortable so I turned east to ride the Springwater Corridor to Gresham in search of more miles.  I had left home planning on a 40 mile ride and had just under 30 miles.  The weather was the nicest I'd seen all day. Certainly you understand. ;-)


Any day on a bike is a good day, though it might have been "less good" than if I had biked yesterday.

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........58................0..............0...............0............58 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 562...............0..............0...............0............562 Total..........1272...............0..............0...............0...........1272

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Chilly Hilly


Today was Cascade Bicycle Club's season opener, Chilly Hilly. The ride takes place on Bainbridge Island, a place noted for it's hilly topography.  Nothing big, just a lot of up and down.

The weather forecast said it was going to be wet, and even a chance of it turning to snow by afternoon. For the second year I was volunteering as a ride referee.  There was some talk of eliminating the ride ref program, but after an uproar by the ride refs, the club big wigs relented. I was disappointed to see many of the refs today bail out because of the weather forecast.  If you ever needed the ride refs it would be in inclement weather when crashes are more likely to happen.

 I like to ride to the ride when possible.  It was 42 degrees as I rode down Queen Ann to the ferry terminal.
My ride packet was to be mailed to me, it included a rider number that gained me space on the ferry.  Without it I'd have to pay a separate fee, with it, the ride was included in the ride registration.  My ride packet never showed up, not a rare occurrence I found later.  Cascade said they'd have a duplicate available at the registration desk.  When I arrived I was bounced around from line to line only to find a clueless person at the desk.  With the ferry leaving imminently, I finally just told them to forget it, I was just going to go for a bike ride.  It was a good thing I planned on dual citizenship and had a pirate flag on the bike to better fit in with the .83 sponsored FHR.  

The ferry is always a sight to behold with all the bikes.
video
                                                                    Arsen S video

The views are always nice on this ride.  Even with the hassle of stopping, taking off gloves, taking the phone out of it's waterproof packing, taking a photo, and reversing the process, I just had to stop for a photo every now and then.


With the predicted wet and cold weather the crowds were a little smaller this year. Those of us attending enjoyed the better than predicted weather.


I stopped to help 3 folks with flat tires who lacked the parts or skills to deal with it. I also assisted with one person who had a medical issue and was evacuated from the route.


Marathon Photo happened to get a photo of the pirate ride ref.


 Even with the stops to assist, I finished the course by noon.  I hadn't even had a single drop of rain.  I pulled into Harbour Public House, the location floated as an after ride meeting point.  The place was hopping, and I was about 2 hours early.  No problem, Scott B showed up shortly and we just waited on the front porch before staking out a table.

Scott B photo
 
Once I knew that some others were just minutes away I walked in to put our names on the waiting list.  A patron who happened to be one of the guys I helped with a flat saw me, and bought me a beer as thanks! 

Before I had to take leave to catch the ferry back, 17 friends showed up for a little post ride food and drink.
It also started raining while we were there.

After the ferry ride back across the water I rode back north along the Seattle Waterfront, then UP Queen Ann.
It was a nice ride!

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........39................0..............0...............0............39 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 504...............0..............0...............0............504 Total..........1214...............0..............0...............0...........1214

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Ready to Ride

A group of Cascade Bicycle Club folks have put together a series called  "Ready to Ride".  Today was Ready to Ride 3.  They planned to ride 25 miles beginning at 11AM.  That was a perfect excuse to ride to the ride.

They planned a flat ride, so I took the fixie.  I had to get down Queen Ann on the way out, and back up Queen Ann on the way back.  Other than that it would be an easy pedal.

I was brave and rode down 3rd Ave N.  I had to touch the brakes twice in the 3/4 mile of 15ish % to keep the bike from running away from me.  I got on the Ship Canal trail then turned into the wind as I got on the Elliot Bay trail.  The wind in my face continued as I rode Marginal Way toward the West Seattle Bridge.  It was raining nonstop during this ride to the ride.  I didn't want to stop to check the time so I kept pedaling.  I arrived at Jack Block Park, our starting point, a half hour before roll out time.  Not bad at all.

The ride finally put pedals down at 11:20.  I was anxious to get moving, I was beginning to get cold.   There were about 35 of us, and we broke into several smaller groups.  I was in the faster group, just hoping I could hold on.  As it ended up, there was no problem keeping up.  The pace was about 14 mph.

A recumbent rider got a flat about 7 miles in.  I stopped with him to help, or at least provide moral support.
His bike has a small front tire and he did not carry a spare tube.  We set about patching the tube. The process was a bit slower than I expected but we did get back on the road after about 15-20 minutes  I thought I'd have problems keeping up with a 'bent but he seemed in no real hurry to try to catch up to the others.

As we neared our turn around point we caught the slowest group.  They were only moving 10-12 so I made my way around them and pedaled on.  I thought the recumbent would also come around, but he didn't.  I knew the basic route, but not the exact route.  I had planned on just staying with the group.  Suddenly I found myself between the slow group and the faster group.  Me bad.

When I got to Bicentennial Park I had not yet caught the faster riders so I stopped to let the slower folks catch up. While waiting I took out the smartphone and Googled "Fort Dent Park", since I had heard that was our turn around destination.  I had overshot it by 1.1 miles, at least the rain had stopped.  I rode back to the park and looked around for the others.  It is a large park and I did not see the others.  I texted to let Julie know I hadn't found them and was riding back to Jack Block Park. I did not know that she didn't have her phone with her.

There was a bit of a tail wind and I made good time.  I came back along the Duwamish Waterway and stopped for a photo.


I caught up to the slower group a mile or so from the West Seattle Bridge.  The sweep rider told me the others were about 5 minutes ahead.  I rode with the group for awhile, but finally picked the speed back up and pedaled toward Jack Block Park.  I pulled into the park, but the faster group had already left.  I turned around and pedaled back towards Queen Ann.  I met the slower group as they neared Jack Block Park.  I thanked the leaders for the ride and kept on going.

As I rode up the ramps of the West Seattle Bridge I felt a squishy rear tire.  It was slow leak and I only had a few miles left to ride, so I just added air and rode fast.  I made it to the Ferry Terminal and added air again.  I headed up the hill.  It was way steeped than I can pedal up, so I walked the bike up 4 blocks, then hopped back on.

This was the second flat that I've had on the fixie.  I think I'll add some sealant to both tires.  The last thing I want on STP is a flat tire.

It was a good ride.  After starting off in rain, most of the "official" ride was dry, and all the return ride back to Queen Ann was dry.

Tomorrow is Chilly Hilly.  It promises to live up to its name!



 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........50................0..............0...............0............50 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 465...............0..............0...............0............465 Total..........1175...............0..............0...............0...........1175

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The best day yet!

Well, this week anyway.

I started out the day by upgrading some route markings that I originally placed over a year ago.  That project went well until I ran out of construction adhesive.  I could have got more, but the weather was just too nice to not be riding.  I hopped on the rain bike and pedaled out.

There was a mostly cloudy sky, but that means at least partly sunny. There was a slight wind, but nothing like the last few days. Temperature was near 50 degrees.

I pedaled down Queen Ann and across the Fremont Bridge.  I joined the Burke-Gilman Trail and followed it to the northern end.  I decided not to extend my trip to the Sammamish Trail as I normally would, as I have plans to celebrate a Cascade Bicycle Club staffer's retirement tonight and don't want to be late.

It was a good ride!



 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........35................0..............0...............0............35 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 415...............0..............0...............0............415 Total..........1125...............0..............0...............0...........1125

Monday, February 17, 2014

A mostly dry day!

It was predicted to be a very wet day in Seattle.

No matter, Julie and loaded bikes (I opted for the fixie today) and drove to Tukwilla through a steady rain to join another rider. Maybe yesterday's ride shamed them into it today?
We arrived at Bicentennial Park in Tukwilla and were happy that there was a lull in the rain.  We chuckled when we asked Brita if she had heard the forecast, and she replied "no".  We took off toward Alki via the Green River Trail.  With the recent heavy rains and some melting snow the river was high and discolored.  If the pioneers had seen it first in this condition they likely would have named it the "Chocolate River" rather than the "Green River".


We pedaled along the Green River trail, but the water we followed changed name from the Green River to the Duwamish River.  It is a tangled web of Black, Green, White, Cedar, and Duwamish on how this could happen. If you are interested, you can read about it HERE.

We had a 15 mph tailwind on the way out, but no rain.  We stopped for some snacks at Tully's Coffee and spent about 45 minutes there before venturing back out.  The time there would come back to bite us.

The return was quite a bit slower as we were now riding into that wind.  We stopped along the Duwamish Waterway for a photo from a little upstream of the one I took yesterday.


Before shoving off the girls got into the picture for posterity.


Shortly after the photo stop we got a light shower.  We'd have them on and off for the rest of the ride. As we rolled back into Bicentennial Park it really started coming down.  If we had just cut that lunch stop short we'd have had a dry ride.

It was a fun ride.

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........34................0..............0...............0............34 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 380...............0..............0...............0............380 Total..........1090...............0..............0...............0...........1090

Sunday, February 16, 2014

(s)He who hesitates

There was some talk about riding from Renton to the Black Diamond Bakery and back today. The weather forecast called for a blustery but mostly dry morning followed by a blustery and very wet afternoon.  The ride was planned for a very late morning start.  By early morning I could hear the drumming, and knew that my riding partners, despite good intentions and verbal assurances, were not going to ride today.

I NEED to ride, so that I CAN ride.  I hopped on the rain bike and pedaled toward Alki.  It was windy but there was a lot of blue sky as I pedaled along the ship canal.


I crossed the "Industrialized" Duwamish River.


I noted that all this "industrial progress" has a price.


I continued on toward Alki Beach fighting against a brisk wind, though I didn't fight too hard.  I wasn't in a race and had no strict time table. The clouds were beginning to build and darken, though there was enough sun peeking through yet to give a nice photo of downtown Seattle across Elliot Bay.


As I neared my planned turn around point, near the Alki Lighthouse, I could see a rain shower approaching.  With the weather forecast, I didn't think of it as merely a "passing shower". I ducked into Tulley's Coffee Shop because I knew they had some goodies calling my name.  I had a piece of nut bread while watching the wind blow raindrops against the windows.  After a bit I noted that the passing cars were only running intermittent wipers, so I put my helmet and gloves back on and headed out.  Riding into the wind all the way out was good as I now had a good tailwind. If you have to ride in rain, a tailwind is far better than a headwind for many reasons.

The rain tapered off, but the wind was consistent.  I made it back to the Fremont Bridge without issue.  As I got there it was not raining.  I decided to ride a few more miles since I was already out there.  I continued on the Burke-Gilman Trail to the Samammish River Trail and took it to Red Hook Brewery.  I used that as a nice location for a turn around, and pedaled back toward Seattle.  I stopped at McDonalds in Kenmore for a small burger and fries. (need to keep fueled you know!)  As I pedaled back toward the Fremont Bridge it was raining lightly again.  I climbed back up Queen Ann via the circuitous "easy way".

It was a nice ride.  I was right, the others had decided it was too nasty to ride.  Glad I got out there for a few miles today.


 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........75................0..............0...............0............75 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 346...............0..............0...............0............346 Total..........1056...............0..............0...............0...........1056

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Another short ride

I had an invitation to join a guy on a ride from Gasworks Park in Seattle beginning at noon and riding to Alki Beach and back.  Julie thought that ride would be too fast, so she was going to do a Cascade Daily Ride from Gasworks Park at 11 AM .  My ride was going to be flat so I took the fixie. It was also supposed to start raining by early afternoon, so I put the clip on fender on it.  Julie is more fashion conscious than I and decided against fenders. We rode to breakfast at Queen Ann Cafe then rode down the hill toward Gasworks.  As we crossed the Fremont Bridge we paused for a photo.


As we stopped for the photo my riding buddy called and sent his regrets, his morning honey-do stretched into an afternoon honey-do.  My plans immediately morphed into joining Julie on the Cascade ride. It was going to have a little more hills, but I figured it would probably be okay.  We arrived at Gasworks Park about 30 minutes before the ride was to take off.   We visited with the others as we waited.  Before we shoved off the rain started lightly.  I didn't put my Garmin on the bike, when I left I figured that I wasn't going to ride anything new so it was no big deal.  As it was, I wish I would have had it along.  We took off from Gasworks Park and ended up near UW, then rode past the Arboretum. I was happy to be following, as I didn't have a clue where we were going. We went across the Montlake Bridge then climbed up a pretty good hill that spread the 35 riders out a bit.  I managed to keep with the leaders, only because I didn't have the luxury of gearing down and spinning the pedals.  I had to keep my momentum up.

Before long I recognized the road as one we ride the opposite direction on the annual Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic. The rain had picked up a bit. We got back to Lake Union and followed the west side back northward. As we approached the Fremont Bridge most of the slower riders decided that the "first loop" was enough. Just over half of us decided that we were already out there, we might as will ride.

We continued out toward Magnolia but before reaching that scenic peninsula we turned onto the Elliot Bay trail and rode toward downtown Seattle. We exited the trail and made our way through downtown.  The rain continued to increased.  We eventually turned north and rode up Dexter St back toward the Fremont Bridge.  As we rode along the base of the Queen Ann hill Julie and I took our leave and pedaled up the hill. I was ahead of her and took a different route.  I took a pedestrian walkway/stairway and crossed over the divided Aurora Ave.  To my surprise, the stairs continued on up the hill all the way to nearly Taylor.  I came out on a cul-de-sac on Galer, just a short block away from Taylor.  I pedaled just a few blocks to finish up the ride.

Julie followed me in about 15 minutes later.  She had pedaled up Dexter and rode a bit longer than I did, with no walking stairs. She was a bit cold, the rooster tail off the rear wheel had soaked her tail and she was happy to be done.


 In the first loop I came around a corner and was surprised by a 1 block long 25%ish hill.  I might have made it if I knew it were coming and got a run at it.  As it was, I stalled out quickly and ended up walking. I wasn't alone as some of the geared bike riders walked their bikes too.

It ended up being about 20 miles shorter than the ride I had planned on, but it was still fun.

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........22................0..............0...............0............22 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 271...............0..............0...............0............271 Total...........981...............0..............0...............0............981

Friday, February 14, 2014

Short but sweet

The weather is quite nice by Oregon February standards.  I couldn't get out for a ride yesterday since I had afternoon meetings to attend, and duties to attend to in the morning.  I will be burning dead dinosaurs this afternoon, but just couldn't resist getting a short ride in before loading up the bike.

I hopped on the fixed gear bike and pedaled around the neighborhood.........  hard!



 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today...........9................0..............0...............0.............9 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 249...............0..............0...............0............249 Total...........959...............0..............0...............0............959

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A fixie as transportation

I had a whole slew of home chores to catch up on.  The usual, clothes dryer that didn't heat, a tractor that needed protection against the elements, a bike that got a new handlebar.  Oh, that last thing, yup, last weekend in Seattle I attended Bike Swap and picked up a new stem and bullhorn handlebars for the fixed gear bike.  On longer rides I noted that the original one had the wrong curve for me and caused elbow pain.

Last night I swapped the handlebars in, but it is slightly larger diameter, and I needed longer bolts to attach the brake levers.  Today I rode the fixie to the hardware store to get slightly longer stainless steel bolts.  Last night while removing the speedometer, I damaged the wires. (low light and paying more attention to the Olympics than to the job at hand)  I also rode to Fred Meyer and got another cheapo speedo.  I mounted it, and did another loop into town for lunch, and to check the calibration of the new speedometer against the Garmin GPS.

It was cloudy, but not raining.  The temperature was in the low 50's.  Pretty darn balmy!  There was still a lot of snow in the landscape and road edge, but the lanes were clear.

I was out in Forest Grove tonight for a meeting, there is a LOT more roadside snow there!

 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today...........7................0..............0...............0............,7 Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 240...............0..............0...............0............240
Total...........950...............0..............0...............0............950

Saturday, February 8, 2014

A wonderful stroke of luck

Today was my Birthday Ride, Seattle Edition.  Last Saturday for the Oregon Edition we had nearly perfect weather. The weather since then has taken a turn for the snowy.  I got on the road for Seattle just minutes ahead of the snow in Portland.  I saw cars sliding off the road and spinning around as I made my way up I-5.  I thought perhaps that might be the weather we'd have for the ride today.  But that was not to happen.  Most of  the folks who were going to join me backed out due to perceived cold.  It was still 10 degrees warmer than Portland this morning, the ride was on.

Arsen and I were the only attendees, but no matter, we were going to have fun. The temperature as we pedaled off from Marymoor was 29 degrees and the roads were dry.  The sun was more out than hidden, the Olympic Mountains were in their glory.



Arsen is a good rider, and quite a few years younger than I, but I knew the route so he had to stay close. ;-)
We pedaled along without making many stops We did stop at a view point for this photo.


There was a bit more climbing than the Oregon route, and steeper maximum gradient, but it was still fun.  The weather was good, and the views were nice.

Silver Lake
 We had one segment in an industrial area where we rode a few hundred feet on packed gravel next to a lake. As we approached the lake a muskrat scampered  across our path toward the safety of the water. We stopped there for awhile and watched with amusement as ducks would glide in for a water landing, only to go skating across the frozen surface.

The Muskrat was still making tracks away from us.

The ducks congregated in the only open water
 We came across a road closed by the fire department as they rescued a driver who had left the road and gone through a fence. Sorry that it happened, but glad it happened before we got there, rather than as we passed through there.  We made our way around the apparatus and continued on our way.


We had one more significant climb as we neared Woodinville. After getting to the top of that climb it was all relatively down hill.  We cruised along at a good pace. In the last mile or so we were routed to bike paths to avoid a busy freeway interchange.  In no time at all we were back in Marymoor, the temperature was 40 degrees.


Following the ride Arsen and I met up with Julie and her family for a little birthday dinner.


 It was a nice day and a nice stroke of luck with the weather.  What is the chance of two Saturdays in February in a row being sunny and dry?  We did have increasing clouds as the day wore on, but no real threat of precipitation.

That would change as I am typing this up, it is now snowing in Seattle, the first snow this month, and only a skiff on the ground as of 7:15.  My Oregon friends are sure to be smiling over this turn of events, as they sit in 8"-15" of the white stuff.


 ............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........59................0..............0...............0............59
Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 233...............0..............0...............0............233
Total...........943...............0..............0...............0............943



Friday, February 7, 2014

They don't know how well they have it.

I am in Seattle in preparation for tomorrow's Seattle Birthday Ride. At home it is in the very low 20's with 6-8 inches of snow on the ground and gusty east winds.  In Seattle it is 33 degrees with partial sun, no snow, and only the lightest of breeze.

I couldn't resist, I went for a bike ride.

At first I thought I had to ride to Cascade Bicycle Club's headquarters to take care of some ride registration details, but the details sorted themselves out.
So instead I rode down Queen Ann, across the Fremont Bridge, and out the Burke-Gilman Trail to Logboom Park and back.

It was a bit chilly, but I know it could have been a LOT worse.

............road bike..........rollers........mtb.........lifecycle....total
Today..........32................0..............0...............0............32
Jan.............710................0..............0...............0...........710
Feb........... 174...............0..............0...............0............174
Total...........884...............0..............0...............0............884

Monday, February 3, 2014

When they say "snow", believe them

Kent, Ken, and I (I guess you could say The Three K's!) planned to go on a bike ride today.  This morning I checked the weather and noted that there was a 70% chance of a 1" accumulation of snow in Sandy, Oregon.  We'd be riding right through there.  Well, accurately predicting snow in NW Oregon is anything but an exact science.  After touching base with each other this morning we decided we would still ride.  I brought the rain bike.

We met at Linneman Station. It was raining lightly with temperature in the low to mid 30's. There was some discussion on proper attire. I added rain pants as we pedaled off at 10AM.  We hopped on the Gresham-Fairview Trail and pedaled northward to Halsey Street and followed that east through Wood Village and Troutdale where we crossed the Sandy River and accessed the Historic Columbia River Gorge Highway. It continued raining lightly as we did so.

We chuckled a bit at some of my friends in a Chino, CA bike group.  They cancelled a ride today because the roads were wet.  We didn't laugh too hard though.  We realize that they don't get much rain there, and when it does rain the roads will have a lot of built up oil that makes things slick, just like it does here on the first rains each fall.  They don't get enough rain to ever develop the skills, or even to know what to be wary of.  We compared it to riding in snow.  The commuters here in Portland develop skills to ride on snow because they have to, we recreational riders just usually stay home when there is ice and snow on the roadways.

We were pedaling along at 17-18 mph and having a good time.   After passing the Stark Street Bridge the road began to tip upward and our pace slowed a bit.  Just past Springdale we took a right on Hurlburt road and pedaled toward Bull Run. (click HERE to watch a 30 minute OPB special on Bull Run)  At mile 14 we turned right on Gordon Creek Road and continued our climb. At mile 16 we saw our first snowflakes mixed with rain, though we had dropped down to the Sandy River and were less than 300 ft elevation. By mile 18 we were at almost 900 ft elevation and there was significant snow falling.  We took a brief stop to take shelter and chow down on some snacks.

Kent is smart enough to get out of the precipitation
Ken says he's already wet, no shelter necessary
It didn't take long for snow to accumulate.We continued on, what else could we do? We reduced speed to 10-12mph and stayed mostly in tire tracks somewhat cleared by passing cars.  It was still slippery, even in the "cleared" tracks. 


We eventually got nearly an inch of snow on the road.  The descent to the Bull Run River was taken slowly and carefully.  We climbed the ridge between the Bull Run River and the Sandy River then dropped into the Sandy River Canyon. On the way back up toward the town of Sandy the accumulated snow on the roadways mostly dissipated.

As we rode into the town of Sandy, we were assaulted by a deluge of ice pellets. As we pedaled past the Jonsrud View Point all we could see was frozen precipitation  falling in front of fogged glasses.

I was leading Kent as we rolled down a grade with a small climb ahead of us.  I got on the aerobars to gain momentum and attack the hill.  As I rolled up the hill and speed dropped I got off the aerobars and stood on the pedals.........only to now see my Garmin and note that I was off course.  I turned around and pedaled the quarter mile back to where I had missed the left turn onto Dunn Road.  

The boys had a good laugh when I caught back up to them.  Ken wanted to be back in east Portland by 2pm so that he could pick his daughter up from school.  We pedaled along with purpose. We made our way southward to the little burg of Boring, Oregon, where we accessed the eastern end of the Springwater Corridor trail and road it back toward Linneman Station.

Along the way Kent picked up a piece of glass.  We were all glad that it didn't happen in the snow and rain, as the weather was pretty decent at this point.


Even with the flat, we made good time.  Ken made it back in plenty of time to pick up his daughter.  He sent the conversation to me. It perfectly summed up our day.

"I got back in time to pick my daughter up at school. As she was telling me about her day, she said "and daddy, just
For a little bit during recess it snowed! Did you see any snow today?"

I replied "I was riding my bike in the snow!"


As it ended up, my clothing choice was perfect.  I was a bit warm on the climbs, and just a bit chilly on the descents.  Can't get much better than that.


HERE is a link to a more informative map of our route.

  ..............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle........total
Today..............45...........0................0............0.............45 Jan.................710..............0...............0.........0.............710
Feb................142..............0...............0...........0.............142
Total.............852.............0...............0..........0..............852



Sunday, February 2, 2014

A not so recovery ride

Despite my less than stellar performance yesterday I was tired last night following the ride.  I thought a nice easy pedal out Springwater Corridor today would be a good recovery ride. I put out a feeler on Facebook for other non-footballaholics to join me on a repeat of the ride from two days ago.   Hard Core Ken nibbled.

I started out from Sellwood Riverfront Park on my fixie and headed east.  Ken lives out near I-205 and pedaled from his home toward me.  We met near the bridge that crosses Hwy 99E.  He turned around and we continued to Boring.  Ken rode a relaxed pace for him, 16-17 mph, and on my fixie it was all I could do to hang on.  Being an abandonned railroad right of way, the grades are minimal, but when we were going "up" I couldn't hold on, on the "downs" I could.  He was tolerant of my slowness.  We arrived at the Boring terminus, and took this photo before turning back around.


Unlike the rides I do in Seattle, there was no "coffee stop" at our midway point.  We just rode back.

The elevation profile shows that there is more "down" than "up" on the return trip.  I appreciated that, as I was better able to hold a decent pace.

It was an even more beautiful day than yesterday.  Less morning clouds for sure, though maybe a bit cooler. There is some really cold weather predicted for the end of the week.  Maybe it was that prospect, or that folks wanted to get out and enjoy the sun before a football game rumored to be televised in the afternoon , but the trail was crowded with bikes and walkers.  They all were attentive to our "on your left" notices, and we moved through reasonably well.

It was a good day, but not the laid back recovery ride I had thought about. 

Tomorrow I go out and get my tail kicked again.  What fun!

 ..............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle........total
Today..............38...........0................0............0.............38 Jan.................710..............0...............0.........0.............710
Feb.................97..............0...............0...........0..............97
Total.............807.............0...............0..........0..............807


Saturday, February 1, 2014

The Birthday Ride (Oregon edition)

It all started on my 50th birthday, I began celebrating the birthday by riding 1 mile for every year. That year was the start of my bike riding craziness.

Last year I celebrated with two rides.  One in Washington, and one in Oregon.  I will do the same this year.  Today 4 of us rode the Oregon version.

 
We had perfect weather, especially considering it is February!  There were a few low clouds around to the west as we took off, but before too long it was mostly blue, with only the lightest of a south breeze, highs into the low 50's.  There were supposed to be a few more of us, but various issues precluded the others from attending.

Especially early in the ride the road was a bit damp in places.  I was glad I had put my clip on fender on the back. But the roads dried off as the day progressed.


As we rode through Forest Grove we stopped in to say "hi" to Mike Olson, at Olson's Bicycle Shop.  He's a great supporter of bike events, and though we didn't have room to haul purchases, we did stop for about 30 minutes worth of visiting. If you are ever in the neighborhood be sure to stop in!

The route had been fairly flat up to this point, but at mile 22.5 we started up a grade that ran about 9% and reached 11.5%, luckily it was only a half mile long.  I had dropped a chain just as I started up, so was immediately off the back.  They were waiting for me at the top.

Dave, Paul, and John Henry
The descent off the back side was nice. We pulled into the Forest Hills Golf Course to top off water, but the outside fountain was drained for the winter.  None of us needed water bad enough to walk inside to get it.
In a few more miles we started up the biggest climb of the day. It was only a mile and a half long, only running about 6-8% most of the time, but again maxed out at 11.5%.  Our group spread out along the grade. Dave was off the front, and I was the lanterne rouge.  A couple of fit young bucks came up from behind and passed all of us handily, while chatting up a storm. I finally made it up to the top, and again the gang was waiting for me.


I was the last one up to the top, but the first one down the back side, reaching 53 mph.  Old age and treachery will overcome youth and fitness!  It was a nice straight run with good sightlines.  I've mentioned it before but will say it again, I love downhills and tailwinds!  We continued a few miles then at about mile 30 of our route we arrived at the Laurel Store. I picked up a package of fig bars, and between the 4 of us we polished it off.


About mile 39 we had some routing issues.  I was....... leading from the rear, and those off the front missed a turn.  Dave and Paul had not downloaded the route.   John Henry was with them and had the route on his Garmin, but was not displaying the map screen.  When they figured out I was not behind them John Henry turned around and rode back to where we were last together.  He switched to the map and realized they had missed a turn. He followed the correct route and tried to chase me down.   My stupid smart phone doesn't have enough battery to last a day and I heard it chirp a low battery alarm just as Dave called.  We got enough chat time for me to communicate that I was near the Tualatin River and was going to be riding on Tile Flat Road before the phone died.  As I was putting the phone back in my pack John Henry pedaled up.  We decided to soft pedal to Tile Flat Road and wait.  We got to the far end of Tile Flat Road and waited for nearly a half hour.  John Henry didn't have the other's phone numbers, I had them, but they were not accessible on the dead phone.  We finally decided that even with a possible flat tire they should have been caught up.  We figured that they knew the way, but not the route, and were probably making their way back to our vehicles at Fred Meyer via some alternate route.  We decided to pedal the last 11 miles to my pickup, where I could charge my phone and call them, if they weren't there already.   We picked up the pace a bit and pedaled toward the barn.

As we finished up we saw both of them, smiling like Cheshire Cats resting by the vehicles.  The did know the way, and managed to shave a few miles off the planned route.  This is what John Henry and I rode, and it was our planned route today.



We locked up the bikes and headed across the road to Cornelius Pass Roadhouse  where my sister and nephew met us for some birthday cake and happy hour goodness.


Thanks to my sister Bev for again bringing a birthday cake!


It was a good day, great weather, and a good workout for me.......trying to keep up with all those young whipper snappers.


..............road bike.......rollers.........mtb.....lifecycle........total
Today..............59...........0................0............0.............59 Jan.................710..............0...............0.........0.............710
Feb.................59..............0...............0...........0..............59
Total.............769.............0...............0..........0..............769