Sunday, January 31, 2010

Still Streaking at 17

Not much light hearted banter at the beginning of this morning's ride. Just that little voice in my head wishing my dang fingers would hurry up and go numb so I could relax and enjoy the ride.

Which they eventually did...about 15 minutes in. Maybe next time I will wear thinner gloves so that my fingers will go numb quicker.

But in the end, we kept the streak alive. You know, that streak of consecutive rides in inhospitable conditions where you start off pretty dubious but by the end of the ride you are totally glad that you did it. We are 100% on this multi-year streak, and we have ridden in some pretty gnarly stuff. Like today when we started at 17° ambient. When you factor in a cold metal handlebar, 15mph of wind chill, and a perfectly good pair of slippers sitting at home, I think that puts the "real feel" pretty close to 0° Kelvin. But yet, by mid-ride we were perfectly comfortable, yucking it up, and -- yes -- glad we did it.

And boy this couch feels about 400x better now than it did this morning!


"Just remember, when you’re over the hill, you begin to pick up speed." — Charles Schultz

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pick Up a Twig

It happens.

You're riding along and a leaf or twig gets swept up into one of your wheels, lodges somewhere in the frame, and that "ping-ping-ping" sound shatters the great karma you had flowing a few short seconds ago. If you're lucky it ejects by itself, or you are able to clear it out by hand without stopping...and without crashing.

But on tonight's ride the twig was about three inches in diameter, and instead of a playful "ping-ping-ping" sound, Jim's front wheel froze instantly and he endo'd, almost. Great stuff.

But best of all was that after wrenching that sucker out (it took some work), that $50 Loco wheel was as true as the day it was machine-built somewhere in Taiwan. Pretty impressive. Not sure a $1,000 American Classic would have fared as well. Maybe yes, but maybe no.

We rode the west side including the new Root Trail bypass -- dubbed the "Re-Root Trail" (thanks Mike). Surface frozen with soft ground underneath. Someone said sort of like riding on moss...or like riding with two flat tires. Strange sensation, great workout.