Thursday, December 30, 2010

A nice central Vermont 70 miler...

It starts with a long and VERY gradual ascent up the Brook Road which is a nice rolling dirt road that follows, you guessed it, a brook. Then onto pavement along the reservoir. Then a turn onto Rt. 302 which is essentially and endless and fairly steep climb. Then a bomer down to Rt. 232. This is the first store on the ride. Then a left onto Rt. 232 for moderate rollers and some climbs then bomb down onto Rt. 2. Follow Rt. 2 until the right onto Creamery St. (second store Marshfield country store) for a beautiful scenic ride up to Cabot. Cabot also has a store. Next store I believe is in West Danville, the Joe's pond country store. The ride around Joe's pond is also lovely. The rest of the ride is typical Vermont up and down along the 2 lane with variable shoulder action until you get back to Plainfield.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Handlebar bags

The new Arkel small bar bag.


A hand made bar basket for my kid's bike, rando in training:) His granny made it. She is a basket maker.

Nice reinforced spaces for nylon webbing buckle system.

It even works well on adult bike with brifters.

Another view.

The basket was made by granny for my son's biking adventures.
I mounted up the basket on my road bike so that if anyone wants to special order a basket from Granny Ann you can see how it looks. She can also make any size and shape of basket you want! A link to her soon to be website coming soon.

The Arkel bag was purchased for my rides after much internal deliberation. I am very happy with it. It seems to be the perfect size. The mounting system is flawless. Looking forward to having the cue sheets up high and easily viewable.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Xmas eve ride

Hardwood Mountain.

Dog on railbed.

Nasmith Brook.

Bike at Laird Pond with view of Kettle Mtn.

Dog digging at pond.

Beaver lodge at Laird Pond.

View of Kettle Mtn.

My cold head.

Bike & Dog.

Went out for a nice ride this morning after making a hearty breakfast for the family. After the ride we did some sledding action with 2 jumps on the hill. Fun Fun for all.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


The mittens were more lovely than usual. The thumbs are often numb by the end of the ride if there is a lot of braking. These warmers did the trick.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Snow time!

Lets go!

Happily trotting along.

Cows seemed surprised today.

That's my foot eh?

Cockpit view.

It was a good day for back roads riding.

Recovery time.

Got out today on the mtn. bike. Dropped the pressure down to 25 in front and 30 in rear. Worked out great on the back roads and okay on the old rail bed. The canine was thrilled with the experience. Not too sure about he cows, they seemed a bit out of sorts upon noticing us. They were in a different field from summertime and I am sure I looked different in winter mode.

These Burton mittens are amazing!! Warm and nimble. Highly recommended. They are the best hand warming devices I have ever owned.
3 years and still going strong.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

What I'm riding now...

After the Lake Champlain 200k I decided that it was time for a bike that was 12-15 lbs. lighter and a much better fit than my roadified Trek 950. (which was a great bike) This summer I picked up a Surly Pacer from Old Spokes. They set me up for fit and I was on my way.

This is a fantastic bike. It is super comfortable and handles great. For me it has the perfectly tight steering that is soooo nice. In addition the fit is nice and relaxed. I went for a 58cm. I am 6' tall but with short legs so the seat is lowish but that is fine with me, just takes more pressure off my hands.

It is now fitted with planet bike hybrid fenders and a rear rack. Coming after the holidays is an Arkel handlebar bag.

For now it is on the trainer in the basement. Wheee, fun.

From this summer...

This is an image from the 100k cafe cruise this summer. A beautiful day and many wonderful pastries later. I think there were 5 coffee shops/bakeries on this ride!

The Lake Champlain 200k was a hot hot ride. There is a big climb right before you must decide whether to go for the 200k or take the first ferry back to Vermont. I am pretty sure my brain partially melted, thus resulting in my decision to finish. It was quite a ride around the lake though. It's always nice to ride near Burlington where one can somewhat avoid the constant climbing of central Vermont.

On the ferry back to Vermont from the New York side on the 200k.

This summer I started doing some longer rides. I completed my first 200k. Here are some pictures from the summer biking adventures.

All of the posts under this one are 1-3 years old.

I copied them from another blog to start a bike specific blog.

Saturday in Burlington biking. We met up with Mike and Eva for a fun little ride out on the causeway in Burlington. Later Michelle and Jen and the rest of us met up for some food at Stone Soup in Burlington. Now Michelle and I are all set for our big city experience for a while. Since we are accustomed to the sensory experience of a dirt road and the woods it seemed like a lot of sensory input even to be in a small city on a Saturday evening. Funny, huh? It was lots of fun, Keenan was totally wired and stimulated.
Here is the current winter ride. Trek 950 mtn bike with road bars. Had it powder coated this spring so it wouldn't fall apart from rust. Nokian studs and fenders. Tons of winter fun with the dog runnnning behind!

Went on a little s240 (sub 24 hour) overnight bike camping trip with Mike. We stayed at a lean-to in Little River State Park in Waterbury. The general idea is to get out wherever for a bit. Was nippy, 21 degrees overnight. Nice fires and down jacket inside the sleeping bag to stay warm. I was actually quite comfortable except for numb toes at 5 AM. Might need to add down booties to winter camping list. We encountered a doodling porcupine on our way in!
The plan is that this will be THE bike. The one that does it all. It pretty much is already. Yummy lugged steel. An old mtn. bike frame converted to roadness. My current focus is on fit and comfort. I have solved my elbow pain issues which caused me to stop riding years ago. So simple. Stop putting 70% of your body weight on your hands! And yes, that stem is safely installed according to the max. height line. Now I am working on my butt which seems to give out somewhere around 60 miles. My plan is to 1) lose 10 lbs. 2) get a new seat(s) 3) pedal harder and 4) ride more. I decided that last year I was practicing excessive moderation in my riding efforts and have since modified that to moderate moderation. The harder I pedal the less my weight is on my butt. Amazing. I am looking at these tires as all time tires except maybe using my WTB slickasaurus for century rides and such. Where I live it is pretty much all gravel to dirt to bad pavement to gravel to dirt. The road shoulders are not so good either. So I plan to stick to back roads and roads less travelled. I think that will make all the difference.
The last few years the cross country ski experience in Vermont has been very skimpy. It seems like there are only a few days each year that have been any good. SO, in come the winter bike tires. I must get out and be active. I have gotten old enough that the winter pudge does not come off easily any more, therefore I aim to prevent it. I understand that this change is part of the 30 year warranty on the human body.
These excellent custom tires took 2 hours to make. Ingredients: one old pair knobbies, 180 3/8" sheet metal screws, cloth tape and viola! They work awesome!! Just like riding on non-ice. Fun.
Double row in front, triple row in back. Vroom!

Rolling along Rt.2 between Montpelier and Middlesex in the foggy morning.