Friday, May 28, 2010

Rocking the All Rounder

John is a P2P volunteer I met at our West Central tune up this year. Nice guy. Turns out he has a 1996 Rivendell All Rounder in a size that works for me. I invited myself over to ride his bike and he graciously accepted.

I've always wanted to ride this bike. It's basically a higher-quality version of the XO-1. I had an XO-1 for a while that was too small, but I enjoyed riding it. I expected the All Rounder to have a 25.4 top tube and be a bit flexier than it was. The tubing is Reynolds 753, which is nice stuff: a mixture of 747 and 858 double butted tubing. The bike rode nicely.

John is in terrific shape. He was on a big honking Trek double-suspension mountain bike. After a quick 3 mile flat start, we did about a 3-4 mile climb up out of his valley on pavement. He was cooking and I had to work to keep him in sight.

We rode around the northwest corner of Couer d'Alene lake. It's a crazy beautiful area with nice climbs, dirt roads, and peeks of the lake through thick forest. I'm going to spend some more time over there this year. I think it would be fun to ride dirt roads and goat paths from the north to the south end of the lake on the west side. Maybe make it an overnighter.

John also knows a way up Mica Peak on the east side. I failed hugely last time I tried to track a route down that sucker, so I look forward to riding up the east side with him. Yet another reason to get my mountain bike story figured out.

Maddie is really enjoying climbing. It's the perfect thing for her right now. She gets into jams up there and where she used to get frustrated and quit, she now focuses, takes her time, and figures it out. I've nearly cried in joy a couple times watching her figure out a hard section by sticking with it, thinking it through, and powering up the wall. Cool stuff.

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