Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Texas....of all places!

Texas of all places is the absolute last place that I would ever expect to see this sign!

You know what they say, everything is bigger in Texas! And bikes are becoming an everyday part of life in this city. Its true, San Antonio,TX is getting a make over and a young progressive city government. These signs are actually everywhere, this one happens to be in the downtown area. They have modeled their bike revitalization infrastructure after cities like Portland, who as we know has a very progressive bike infrastructure. Its pretty cool to see people riding bikes in this big truck drivin, cowboy hat wearin, shitkicker of a city.

The city is also building a centennial type trail that starts in the downtown area and follows the San Antonio river south. The trail when complete will encompass both sides of the river and encourage both foot and bike traffic. It is part of the Mission Parkway which includes 5 historical missions. 4 of which are owned by the National Park Service and the 5th mission being the most famous, The Alamo is owned by the State of Texas. The bike ride I did down the trail was an easy 7ish miles with some awesome historical scenery, and I was able to see 4 of the 5 missions. The most popular and most familiar part of this trail is the downtown Riverwalk area, so it was neat to get on a bike and see some more of this city, take in some history, and be somewhere less populated.

I continued my quest for bikey things in San Antonio and came up with Blue Star Bikes. Really, how can you beat a shop right next to a microbrew pub?! This shop was maybe 700sqf, way off the beaten path and they had alot of different bikes for such a small shop.

I continued north to Austin, TX. As I pulled into Austin, first 2 bikes I saw, Surly Cross Check and a Pugsley. Austin is the anomaly of this giant state, its like Portland, Seattle, San Francisco and Spokane all rolled into one. Its mostly hard to believe you're actually in Texas. Its most popular for Austin City Limits, and of course UT Austin, "hook em horns". Austin, TX also holds the key to perhaps the most bikey of bike shops, Lance Armstrongs "Mellow Johnny's". Whether you like or dislike Armstrong I highly recommend checking out his shop. I was there a good 2 hours and these are some of things I saw.

Texas! Full of bike surprises, it was nothing like I expected.


Pondero said...

I hope you enjoyed the trip down here. Texas might not be perfect, but living here has its high points. Although, I travel to San Antonio and Austin frequently for business, I've been home in north Texas lately.

Anonymous said...

One of my favorites as a Tax Rep. for Texaco in the early 80's. La Mansion Del Rio. Oysters were a nickel each.

Matt, Houston said...

It's always good to hear about those experiencing personal growth by visiting new places and learning about different cultures.