Monday, April 21, 2014

River opening '14 and a few bikey things

Rolling the trike on the river road. That trike belonged to my Grandfather. He used to ride it on the MUP in Long Beach. When he died, that trike is pretty much all my dad wanted to get. And he drove down there and got it.

Gotta roast the inaugural marshmallows of the year.

She incinerates them just like I used to. Mine is on the right. It took about 30 years to figure out  the patience part of that deal. And once I did, I sort of lost my taste for marshmallows. 

Sunset. Air guitar. Truck. Fat bike. Make a mental note of that basket.

Me. My dad in the background... under that slab.

First time driving. She only killed it once. But she only stayed in first gear.

More river road.

The Spider bike is going away... giving it to a friend. It was a good fit for the river, but pretty limited in its 2-speed range. So I'm going to bring up an old mountain bike. Actually, this summer, I'll be rocking the SH-80 up there. 

But the basket wasn't included. It now lives on the Kogswell. I dig it.

I dropped the Roast House mug off at Pat's. And he had three cases of Buffalo Chicken MRE's (aka "chicken shits" -- Andre's nomenclature) -- the best dehydrated food ever that has been -- on his porch. He's cooking up, figuring, and planning something for sure.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Monster tail winds

The last two days the commute has been great. I've felt STRONG and FAST.

Turns out there's just a huge friggin' tailwind.


Righteous Lyons. After a thorough rain washing on the front of the bus. Rode it home. Then washed it again on the bus. Then rode it home today: that is one loud-ass, squeaky, chain situation.

Kent P shadow photo.

Jon. He called me up outta the blue and wanted to have lunch today. He jumped on the bus and came out to Cheney. We rode home with a MONSTER tail wind on the FLT.

That captures the purple pretty well. Jon wanted a darker more "midnight" purple, but I dig this one. And really... isn't that all that *really* matters?

More Lyons. Fred calls that tape design, "Unicorn Puke," which I think of everytime I ride this bike. And that makes me happy.

Yep. That car is rad. but see the tiny point of the top of Jon's helmet? That's the point of this pic.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Dust. Big trucks. The best food-like product ever. And the bike swap. In reverse order.

Glen (nose and arm pictured, far right), Matt (not pictured), Justin, Pat, and I (not pictured) hung out at the Spokane Bike Swap last weekend. It's always rad hanging with these guys, but I'm thinking we need to figure out a different plan for the swap next year: one that only involves one day. 

This is it. My desert island food. Good god. Mother of pearl. Just f'ing buy some and eat it. Mrs. Renfro's Ghost Pepper Nacho Cheese Sauce. The review: it's hot fat. And it's sublime in its fatty sweety cheesy heat. 

Two halves of an Elephant. Glen is bullish on the Ritchey coupler system. He likes smart shit that performs well and is a good value. Hard to argue with that. I think I still prefer S&S for its compactness, though from anecdotal accounts, it sounds like airlines don't measure luggage anymore, they just charge you if you have it. In that case, the benefit of the 26 x 26 x 10 case of the S&S may not matter anymore.

This dude was rad. He's in a monster semi-truck and to keep the dust at bay, he made a point of slowing way, way down about 1/4 of a mile back from me. I'd say he passed me at about 10-15 mph. This was on my commute home from EWU yesterday. I've noticed that in these parts, most folks don't make this kind of effort to reduce the dust when they pass you. In Ferry County -- I've noticed that pretty much everyone makes an effort. That makes sense to me. In Ferry County I don't think bicyclists represent the urban/suburban/exurban encroachment on the rural lifestyle that we seem to represent around here. That's a theory I developed when I was an exurbanite in Duvall over a decade ago, where the drivers were homicidal in the way they shaved your arm hairs as they squeezed past you in their SUVs on two-lane roads at 65 MPH.


Lake. Well... probably a pond, technically speaking.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Antoine Peak

Pat, Glen, and I rode around Antoine Peak today.

Of the 2 hours we were out, I'd say that about 4 minutes of it were spent descending. 

All the rest was climb. But I may be exaggerating.

But not much. Check out Glen's Strava track of the route.

I think I'm gonna put some SPD's on the Pugsley. My hips were killing me by the end of the ride. 

Yes. It's come to this. This will be "sleep" mode. More to come.

We saw a young moose at the top. He didn't care much that we were there.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Early dismissal

It's conference week at Maddie's school, so she gets out at 1:00 every day. 

We went up to Palisades to tool around on the trails today. Our plan was Riverside State Park, which I think we'll stick to next time. 

She also explored stuff. Watching her flit along the edge of the cliff here made my heart jump a couple times, but I played it cool. I kept reminding myself that she's always had the stability of a mountain goat.

The trails at Palisades are not technical at all, but there a few muddy boggy spots, some rocks and roots, and the occasional deep narrow section. She's much more comfortable rolling through this kind of stuff this year. 

The horses were not interested in Maddie whatsoever. No love.

I should've taken a picture of some of the muddy sections. The Pugsley rocks that stuff. I took it slow in a low gear, sank into the mud, and just grinded it out. 

This kid. I dig her. She told me all sorts of good stuff as we tooled around the park. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Orcas mnt biking

This was the 2nd Annual Orcas Island Spring Break Mountain Bike Hang. Here's last year's roll up. We lost Rory this year to illness. But we gained Pat and Betsy.

These trips are never what you picture them to be. Planning and fussing for weeks ahead of time, you get this idea in your head of how it will be. In my experience, if you're with cool people,  it's always a great time -- even if it's not what you think it was gonna be. The rain got us. And Betsy had a bad fall that resulted in a trip to the minor emergency center. Neither of these events took us out, but they changed the experience in a fortunate way: we bailed from our camping site (with dignity) a day early to spend the final night at the Rosario Resort, where the beer did flow and the oystered did be shucked... or whatever. It was good.

We found an insanely wonderful way down Mt. Constitution. The trail is switch back nirvana with deep green forest. All down with lots of interesting little technical features: rocks, roots, slick, roll outs, etc... So much fun. This was also the trail where Betsy shanked her ankle -- she ended up spraining it really bad. I should've taken a shot: pretty gruesome. She was able to ride down on it, but as soon as she sat down and rested, her foot exploded into a puffed up painful thing. But the trail was rad. And for sure something to plan the next trip around... by shuttling to the top, a gang of four could get in three rides each in a half a day.

This picture doesn't capture the greatness of this section of trail. This was along the SW corner of Cascade Lake. The trail was super fun and tricky -- it reminded me of the Mega Church section of the River Trail, but way longer. Great stuff.
Pat. Ripping it down the switch backs.
Note the tarp solution. This is all Alex. This was the second, improved deployment of the tarp: optimized for precision location draining and  guyed out to avoid tripping and clotheslining the campers. Sailing has added to Alex's already vast practical skills by piling on a bunch of knots and various styles and lengths of rope.

A dam. My bike.
Pat? Alex?
Alex planned on stealing oil from his Rohloff to lube the quick release cam on Betsy's borrowed bike, but it turned out the hub was dry. He ended up finding a wad of grease on his seat post.
Homebound. It's a long haul from Spokane to Orcas Island, around 10 hours. Ideally: we'd spend three solid days riding for this kind of transport stage, but you take what you can get and when the company is good, it's for sure worth it.