Friday, August 22, 2014

New Ride!

bar bag n GPS

secula tail light

medium GB bar bag


The new ride is a 2012 Salsa Vaya. This is a great bike. Last year after a ride I stopped in at Old Spokes Home and hopped on it. With little adjustment it seemed like a perfect fit. I felt I was ready after being back on the road for 4 years to jump in and know what I really wanted to be riding.

Luckily Glenn still had this bike on holdover from 2012 as it has the SRAM double still. I dropped off my old wonderful Pacer as trade-in and had them match it as much as possible exactly for fit, as the Pacer was my personal version of FitWerx developed over 4 years :)

I worked with Justin to determine the build, largely based on the experience of Justin, Harris and Glenn I got a wonderful build.

We chose the Barlow Pass 38x700 which I proved work as high speed bomber cyclocross tires on class 4 rocky and rutted roads, zooming along and bunny hopping all the while! We added a SON hub to the stock wheels, the Edelux

The bag is a mounted on a Velo Orange rack.

Same old WTB Valcon that is SO comfy for me.

SKS fenders.

Double wrap of Salsa tape.

Friday ride...August 15

store at Rt. 15 and Cabot Rd.

I managed to get out for a Friday ride last week. Theoretically we work 4 long days but as the owner I often work Friday also. This was a wonderful ride, perfectly cool and one of my favorite routes. 52 miles of rolling roads that are not too busy and lots of lakes on the way. I also stopped at the most interesting tiny store on Rt 15 and Cabot Rd. There was a hand written sign that said "open until 11:30 today". It was a room maybe 16x20 with shelves on the walls with soup, cereal, tuna, bread etc. A home type fridge with cold drink and coffee. Really neat place.

Monday, August 4, 2014

First post since winter!

New ride, Vaya 2012 holdover.

Rail bridge.

Path along rail bed where bear was!

Barn along Middle Road.

Long bomber downhill into Barre.

Along rte. 302

Reservoir for Barre.

It's been a looooong time since a post popped up here. I have been super busy with work, being a builder and all. I got out for a ride this weekend and met Clifton at Espresso Bueno in Barre for a delicious breakfast burrito and coffee. I rode over on the dirt along Middle Road, which is particularly rough right now, but fun nonetheless. It is definitely nicer on the 38mm Barlow Pass tires! The new bike has been fantastic, more on that later :) We headed back out up Washington Street to where he had come from at the Park and Ride. He headed off to meet the family while I rode on to Reservoir Road and back to Plainfield along Reservior and Brook Roads. This road is a blast, one endless gradual downhill! This loop is part of 100k populaire I want to run next year to pull in more VT riders for the brevet series. It was one of the nicest rides I've done this year.

It hasn't been much of a rando year for me, 2 DNF's and 1 DNS! I have at least been contributing by helping run the VT series with a group of 4-5 others. A bit of a learning curve this year, but looking forward to it next year!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

This is not the winter you are looking for...

Not much snow! Making the best of it though. "When food appears, eat."

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Planned morning loop...

Trying to muster the ambition to ride this 40 minute loop most mornings before work! 

The thought of the trainer shall serve as motivation :)

This past summer...

Mike, Keenan and Mike's girls
Keenan and me

This past summer we went for a 2 family ride on the bike path. Aaaah, memories of warmth and sun.


Cafe Au Yak
So yes, this is generally a bike blog and occasionally a general outdoors blog. Every now and then though, something so important needs to be addressed that it crosses over the category boundaries of the blogland.

Coffee definitely counts as being in that category. If you are reading this and you disagree, please stop reading. I mean this blog, permanently. Because coffee just is.

I have had lots of coffee. 22 years ago I had my first really good coffee. In Memphis, TN at a restaurant called Cafe Samovar. Amazing Russian and Eastern European inspired comfort food and what they called "Hungarian" coffee. They brought out a small copper pot with coffee in it, grounds and all. After a few minutes it settled and you poured it out. Delicious. Rich and thick. This was before good coffee hit the south.

Another highlight was 15 years ago in Kansas City. A restaurant there served cold brewed coffee. They had a big glass contraption on display that they filled with coffee grounds and cold water every night and collected the coffee to be heated later. Very smooth and medium dark. Perfect for hot humid weather.

13 years ago in Colorado. The middle of nowhere. A used book store/pizza joint. Guy took 5 minutes to emerge from the back of the store. He lived there and headed out his backdoor to skin up the mountains behind him. I think he ran this business as a ruse to allow him to own one of those gold Italian machines that cost thousands of dollars. He made an amazing espresso.

Kona coffee 2 weeks ago at Mike's house. Chemex brewed, burr grinder, 60/1000 ratio. Delicious and low acid, dark and amazing.

However, at my own house I have tried dozens of methods. I keep returning to that first good cup of coffee though. My method now is a stainless saucepan. Boil water. Remove from heat. Add rough ground beans. Sit 4 minutes. (see the froth!) Strain through fine mesh stainless strainer. It gets high praise from folks, including the Seattle in-laws who of course are geographically entitled to be officials on coffee.