Monday, April 30, 2012


I wanted Patty along on #30, and she was.

Part ride, part victory lap.  I thought it appropriate that it should end where it started.

In summary, I did an underwhelming 177 miles over the 30 days. If mileage had been the goal of this challenge, I would be too embarrassed to even tell you that. But it wasn't. May is for mileage.  April was about riding a little bit every day, and testing my back out without overdoing it, and getting joints and tendons and ligaments and muscles moving in a bike-ish fashion.  Getting tires aired up and brakes and derailleurs adjusted. Working out some load-carrying details. And getting my head into the habit of taking the bike. And tons of camera practice. And being responsible to you bastards to post something about it all. Every. Single. Damn. Day.

Mission accomplished.  Thanks for following along.

Here's to thirtydaysofbiking then.

Sunday, April 29, 2012


My cross-state tour is looming super large and the preparation is pretty much what my my free time has to be about now if it has any chance of happening.  Thirtydaysofbiking was an important part of the master plan and has served its purpose well, but I'm extremely ready to be done with all the excessive blabbing and photog stuff (which was all an important part of the master plan, don't get me wrong) so that I can move on to the next phase of more intensive planning (including recon) and throwing down substantially more miles. In honor of this transition, ride #29 was some recon of the John Wayne Pioneer Trail, at or about Rosalia.

It was almost a no-go based on the fact that the little window of time I had available kept getting squeezed, but I finally said screw-it-all, and hit the road. Rosalia or bust. My already-short ride time got even shorter just out of the gate when this little bastard flatted me. How rude.

Other than that, the ride was smooth and I learned a lot about what to expect in terms of trail surface and lots of other stuff.

It's late and I'm pretty well gassed, so here are a few pic that I hope will tell their own story.  See you tomorrow for the wrap-up.

Saturday, April 28, 2012


Ride #28 was a bike date, of sorts - Patty and I had signed up to help out for a coupla hours at the Pedals2People tune-up event at the West Central Community Center. Neither of us had been involved in one of these before and so it was quite the new experience.

I'm aware that P2P has done loads of community tune-ups and as a first-timer, what really struck me was how they have adapted what they do, and what they are prepared to do, to meet the general need. Which can vary wildly, btw. Not to say that they haven't defined their role and their purpose - they have. But within that framework, the flexibility and creativity and efficiency is pretty amazing. I loved the experience and am busy processing everything I saw and can't wait til I have a chance to help out with another one of these.

On a lighter and more personal note, I'm totally out of touch with kids' bikes, I acknowledge, so this whole setup is probably old news to you. But it was new and rad to me - it's the brake cable mechanism that allows you to spin your handlebars endlessly without consequence of coiling the cable tightly around your head tube, thereby yanking the rotation of you handlebars to a sudden and deleterious (to your cables) stop. This dept store version is no doubt cheezy and problematic, but as just a basic mechanical concept it's something to behold.

Or maybe it's just me. At any rate, then.

Patty was a "greeter" and decided that after handing out quite a number of P2P spoke cards, one would look pretty good on her ride.

A big part of any legitimate date is a meal, and on the way home we stopped for lunch. At Pacific Pizza. Lady's choice, I kid you not. I was only too happy to favor my gal's fancy.

Patty hasn't come right and and said it. Just yet. But this constant picture taking. Something will eventually come to a head. In the meantime, from where we were sitting, I spied this shot that I thought was interesting. Even as I was snapping it, I was fully engaged in the conversation, I assure you.

Here's another picture that I took earlier this week that is not in any way related to today or riding. Holy hell, I'm now using this so-called bike blog for picture dumps. How lucky are you.

T-minus two days and counting.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012


When I got home from work it was cold and nearly dark. And my spirit was sogged out from all the rain today. I really didn't feel like going for a ride.  But I grabbed my camera and headed out anyway, in the hopes I would see something interesting amidst all the dull, gray, fading light.

I'll be damned if the sunset didn't come alive at the last minute and set the buildings downtown on fire.

Sweet. Just another gentle reminder that when I put myself outside, good things happen.

Yo Jon and Jordy - thanks for the shout out. Four days to go.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


My fatbike needs a bath and I need a ride every day and it was raining tonight, so how supernatural is all that convergence? Except that it stopped raining as soon as I started riding, so it didn't really work out. It would have been so awesome to come home with a totally clean bike.

I cruised to the Elephant Bikes world headquarters. There were all kinds of interesting things to take pictures of there, but I'll be damned if I wasn't too busy yapping to even think about it. On the way out I finally realized I was headed home with no proof of anything and that you bastards would pounce on this and label me a fraud. Here then. I don't know where all the green light came from, but I'm going with it. Some people spend hours in Photoshop to get this same effect and I got it on the first click of the shutter.

As you can tell, I am really grasping for anything even remotely interesting to show or tell you, and majorly failing. Sometimes it's better to just wrap it up before you bury yourself any deeper and this is one of those times.  Catch you tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012


I had plans for a more ambitious ride tonight, but the man put a pretty good beat-down on me today and by the time I got home, the amount of energy I had left in me was exactly equal to what it takes to make a trip to the park with Brandy.  Which is okay - it counts as a ride as far as I'm concerned at this moment, and it's just fine with Brandy.  Patty came along, and since she was up for chucking (not to be confused with up-chucking), it turned into a Brandy-in-action photo shoot.

"When do we start?"

"No, really. When do we start?"

High performance cornering

High performance acceleration


All balled up

"That was pretty fun, boss."

I suspect she (Brandy, not Patty) digs my getting beaten down and wishes it would happen more often.

Monday, April 23, 2012


I picked up a fancy new lens on Saturday, but was too busy over the weekend to try it out. So I was excited to head down to Riverfront Park with Patty this evening to catch some of the great light. As always, click any pic for big.

Pedaling through the warm evening as the light faded was just wonderful. The weatherman says we're getting wet over the next few days, but there are more like today coming soon and I can't wait.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


I knew at the outset that committing to 30daysofbiking would entail some sacrifices, but I guess I didn't think it would entail major sacrifices.

That's right, Bennidito's. You do what you have to do.

The blow was softened by good company (family) and surprisingly decent service, for a change. And we got served whatever food we wanted on the other side of the wall.  I shit you not.

The Green Monstah is my BIL Judd, btw. Righteous dude.

Me and Patty's bikes are canoodling again. Thanks to whoever supplied that description a few posts back, it's pretty accurate. They really, really like each other.

Saturday, April 21, 2012


Damn good to be home. And riding in daylight.


I got home from the Milwaukee Trip with just enough time to work a ride in. Turns out though, getting a ride in before the stroke of midnight wasn't my main challenge: What I ended up wanting, needing, upon my return from this lengthy journey was some down-home comfort food . . . in the form of a Digiorno Spicy Chicken Supreme Pizza. The store closes at 11:00 and I rolled up at 10:56.

The adrenalin made the pizza taste that much better. And I am also duly comforted.


The Milwaukee Trip. I knew it was coming up and I had identified it early on as the main potential impediment to a successful thirtydaysofbiking campaign. It was to be a quick three-day trip and I had a workable plan for day one - get up at the butt-crack-of-dawn and ride before I had to leave to catch my early flight. And I had a plan for day three - a late ride after my plane touched back down in Spo. But that middle day in Milwaukee - oy. If I'd had any free time at all, it would have been simple - head to one of the many great bike shops there and explain my predicament and hope that they would empathize with my situation and let me take one of the shop bikes out on a short ride. Or do a rental. Whatever. It wouldn't have been a problem. But it was a problem, because I would be slammed all day and into the evening with the business I was there to do. I racked my brain over possible solutions - borrow a folder from someone here that I could take with me, or hope to borrow a bike from some unknown commuter at the company I was visiting - but no practical and/or reliable solution emerged from that exercise. I was starting to resign myself to the fact that a contiguous 30 days of riding just wasn't happenin'.

But then at the last moment, the miracle solution appeared, right in the basement of the hotel . . .

Don't laugh.

Ride nineteen happened at another incredibly ridiculous early morning hour, so I think I should get some credit for that. And it definitely meets the criteria: "Bike somewhere every day for 30 days". Hell, if riding up Mount freaking Kilimanjaro on a a recumbent doesn't count, I don't know what does. I'm actually starting to think I'm sort of badass. But that could be the beer talking. At any rate, I'm considering the streak intact. And I'm glad to be home, where the riding is just a little more convenient.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Insanely stupid time of day to even be awake, let alone riding. But it had to happen now, if was gonna happen at all today.  Who came up with this bullshit, anyway.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


A lunch ride and a few laps on the pump track, and this one is in the books.

Monday, April 16, 2012


A dash. For cash. To replenish my stash. That was ravaged by my birthday bash. I was back in a flash. All while avoiding a crash. And the resulting rash.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of my 30th birthday, as they say.  What I wanted most was to get away from it all and hang out with my awesome, awesome wife. And do a little riding, eat some good food and just majorly chill. I totally got my wish.

The destination was Walla Walla -  it's a great town for a weekend getaway, 'cause it's big enough that there's plenty to do over the course of two days and small enough that when you leave after the course of two days, you feel like you've done a fair job of getting acquainted.  And it's a great town for a bike-ish getaway because it's a college town, which means there are bikes all the hell over.  They have great amenities, including a coupla very nice multi-use paths, and plenty of excellent outlying road-riding, if you want to punish yourself just a bit more.

We'd planned to stay at a run-of-the-mill motor-Inn, or so I thought, but Patty surprised me with a room at the Marcus Whitman, which is Walla Walla's Davenport. The whole place is fabulous, including the restaurant, which is where we had dinner last night.  We lived like royalty for the short time we were there.

Patty was exposed (pardon the pun) for the first time to my new obsession with taking pictures of every damn thing I see.  It took us one hell of a long time to get there and maybe even longer to get back.  But we had so much fun, taking the back roads, checking out the spectacular scenery, enjoying each others' company. As we headed through the awesome wind farm on the way down that lies between Colfax and Dayton, I got so revved up over the sights and sounds of the windmills that I was doing about 75 as we came out the other side. In a 60.  I got busted.  The state trooper that pulled me over was the strong and silent type and so I'll never know for sure, but I like to think the reason I got off with a warning (I ALWAYS get ticketed) was that he noticed on my license that it was my birthday.

As Sunday winds to a close, I am just superbly fulfilled and ready to take on the next half century.  Here are a few pics from the weekend then, in chronological order.