Monday, December 26, 2011

Cycling in Spokane - 2011

Gonna go for the ultra-short version this year. Really. No links. on a miserable computer set up... pardon the formatting funk.
Those that came
-- Shogun came back again. From Patrick. Now Jon (of Eberlizer'ing fame) is borrowing that for the winter. It's a great River Bike and will go back to that role in the spring.
-- Salsa Ala Carte – mountain bike. Your basic 26” steel hardtail with Fox forks. Suites my riding perfectly. Yes! I’ve tried 29’ers! 
--That half-fat bike thing.
-- Legolas. Love it.

Those that stayed
-- MB2 -- The oldest bike in the fleet. There's something about how low my bar of expectation for this bike is and how it therefore over-delivers.
-- 747 and Cycle truck:  consistent putter-outters.
-- Elephant v1 – love it. Soon to be swapped out  for Elephant v2 frameset (slightly larger with different tubeset).

Those that left
-- Rawland. Not officially gone and may not officially go. But it's disassembled and in frame state only.
-- Tandem – we finally unloaded it. That was a hard one to let go of, but I did so knowing that there is a communal tandem solution in the pipeline.
-- RB-T coupled bike. The horror! Gone, but we’re all better for it. Really.

Liza/Maddie bikes
-          Liza’s XO-1 city bike conversion was a total and utter success, thanks in part to rack making with Pat and to the fact that the green is rad.
-          Maddie’s Elephant was her main go-to bike this year.
-          Pump track bikes exposed Maddie to some new rides – most notably, thes Intense BMX race bike, a highly-coveted bike among her friends in the neighborhood. She also has spent a fair bit of time on a clunky Redline BMX that kind of rules.
-          Next bike in the queue for Maddie is a righteous mountain bike. The used bike has been purchased, the bits gathered and mostly assembled… expect more here on that soon.

Advocacy and Stuff
2011 was the year of unwinding myself from Advocacy stuff. I grabbed Liza too. In March I finished with the Bicycle Advisory Board, which was a huge weight off my shoulders. My personal goal there when I joined 5 or so years ago was to work with Bob and co to get a damn Master Bike Plan. Nothing significant could happen with out it. Ever since that passed, I felt like attempting to scale the next peak there would just take more than I could give. It was great to be done with that.
There's a much bigger and a well-organized set of up and coming advocacy folk joining the fray to fight through this stuff now. With the passage of the Complete Street Ordinance, the game has been ratcheted up another huge notch. Well done to Kitty and Jon  on that -- for pushing and driving that huge coordinated effort to pass the ordinance.

We also handed off Pedals2People. We started that with friends 5 or so years ago and it was a great thing to do, but at some point we felt we needed to let go and see if we actually built something that could survive without us. Until we became involved in building up P2P we never could have appreciated the amount of effort it takes to create and sustain such an organization. Likely, had we known, we never would have attempted it. Such is the benefit of ignorance. Liza especially has spent a shitpile of time in the background holding up the P2P organization. Seeing her set her self free of this has been great. P2P is in great hands -- a new prez, a smart board, amazing volunteers, bad-ass shop employee, a great new spot, and a few thousand in the bank -- the foundation is there. It will be fun to sit back and see how it goes.

Unrelated to advocacy, but related to the overall effort of cutting back -- I wrote my last "Every Day Cyclist" column for OTM in December. Hank (Shallow Cogitations) will be picking that up for the new year. 

Experience and Riding.
  • Overall this year was marked by a frustrating level of weird health issues. The lung thing took me out for what seems like 1/2 a year in the early part of the year. Once I finally recovered from that, I got clogged. Shit. It's still with me as I mind my thin blood. By Feb or March or so I should be fully whole.
  • Pump track -- best bike thing that happened this year by a way long shot. It's a huge commitment for buddy Pat and his reluctance to continue hosting it is easy to understand. But we have a good alternative in the pipeline and a small and enthusiastic willing work crew to hopefully turn the alternative into a solid reality.
  • River hang pretty much defined my riding this summer. There's just everything up there -- road, trails, deep Nat'l Forest fun. I plan on rocking it crazy this summer.
  • Midnight Century was fun. It landed right in a window of wellness for me and I had a great time. 
  • I didn't do nearly the overnighters I wanted to do... mainly due to health issues. blech.
  • More overnighters
  • Faster Midnight Century time by 1/2 hour or so
  • Rock the Cat 4 CX races next year! Just one stinking top 5 finish please! (yes, that's rocking it)
  • Get Maddie mountain biking.
  • Most of August at the river with as much bike-riding friends and family as possible
  • Not be sick and lame all year!

Good year all!


Anonymous said...

May you have better health in the New Year. You certainly work out enough to have earned some. Even good bourbon is a poor substitute.

I always enjoyed your OTM column, but it will be interesting to see what Shoeless Hank writes about.

Michael said...

Here's to good health in the new year. It's not just you, btw. It seems like there were a whole lot of sick people her in the upper left corner of the country this year. I had the same lung thing you had at about the same time you had it and right now I'm fighting V.2 of it.

But, yeah, hope there's lot's of good health and good rides in 2012.

Hank Greer said...


From the size of the shoes I have to fill, I might as well be shoeless. :-)


Picked up my cross Elephant from Glen last night. The words nimble, smooth, and swift come to mind. See you at the races. And the Midnight Century.