26 March 2012

no rain


Monday, March 26th

I decided to go West on the American River Trail from Sunrise today. Just to get out and ride.
I had gone about 5 miles, then it started getting more overcast and the cold wind started blowing. My little lizard brain screamed "rain! rain! rain!" so I turned around and started back.

no rain.

silly lizard brain!

But I had a good ride anyway. Saw one other recumbent (two wheels) and an interesting electric assist bicycle in cheerful yellow operated by Brian. We had a nice geek-fest over unusual bikes and took each others' pictures.

A few clumps of riders intent on beating the weather and a lot of big slow bold turkeys.

I checked out Rossmoor Bar, down by the river,

Somewhere out there is the river

and noticed that the access road crossed what looks to me like the old route for the bike path. I know that the path had been rerouted in the past in places farther down stream, but I didn't know it had been moved in other places.

Where I think the old path goes

Or maybe I'm all wet.
Despite the lack of rain.
I think maybe I'll go hiking down there someday and see what I can find.

I never did get around to checking the tire or removing the fenders, but I did tighten up the straps on my seat. Less creaking and more solid feeling.

Rain tomorrow, but maybe a ride or two later in the week.

24 March 2012



Friday, March 23rd

I had just finished up the last blog post and my sweetheart called from work and offered to play hookey and take an afternoon bike ride.
How could I say 'no' to that?

So I didn't.

We went around Lake Natoma: a much different ride without shepherding a crowd.

Half the crowd

Stopped at the usual places (Nimbus Flats and Negro Bar) and added a stop at an overlook to remove a jacket and stretch our calves.


There are more serious riders (and better behaved) out on a weekday evening than on a weekend day.

Between yoga this morning and two bike rides, my hamstrings are well exercised.

Himself pushed the pace a little bit and had the beginnings of cramps in his calves (which is preferable to nearly passing out IMHO) after we had stopped to stretch, so I dropped a Nuun electrolyte tablet in his second bottle of water. That helped. I decided to drink one also. It tasted not horribly awful, which must have meant I needed it.
I like the Nuun tablets. The citrus flavors are OK and they are a lot easier to use than trying to tear the top off a packet of electrolyte and then aim sufficiently well to get most of it in the bottle.

Rain rain rain tomorrow. I shall stay home and remove my fenders (since I seem to be avoiding the rain) and see if I can determine if my front wheel bump is a badly-seated tire or an out-of-true wheel. AND I'll finally investigate the creaking seat. Probably just needs the straps tightened up a bit.

23 March 2012



Friday, March 23rd

Finally got my butt back on the bike and went for a ride. The sun is shining and spring is here for sure. The daffodils and redbuds are out (almost over) and the lovely poppies are shining back at the sun.

I started at my usual parking lot on the east side of Folsom, worked my way west, then south, finally cutting back through neighborhoods to my starting place. About 15 miles.

I stopped to get some stuff for the dog at the vet, then I stopped at my favorite bike store (but they were out of tubes for my tires), then at REI to get replacement bike shoes (I do not recommend Velcro closures unless you LIKE constantly re-sticking the flaps down).
I had to order a pair.
Of shoes. What did you think I meant! That's what I get for wanting the newest model (Pearl Izumi X-Alp Drift II, or something like that). The shoes will be in next week. I amused/alarmed the sales associate when he realized that I wore size 45 shoes, the same size he did. Flipper Flipper, blah blah.

I rode on bike trails, with some other signs of spring around

and on city streets. I was very pleased that many of the traffic lights are "bike aware" but displeased because the green light cycle is too short for a slow rider to make it through not on the gellow.

Folsom generally does a good job with bike infrastructure, like this bike trail/street intersection at Russi. I had a ped pushbutton available to stop traffic on Riley so I could get on Russi Rd. Pretty neat.

I generally try to stick to traffic lanes/bike lanes rather than using the sidewalk to get across the street. I will, however, use the sidewalk over riding the wrong way on the street, or other daft things I see folks do. I did a little bit of sidewalk riding right at the beginning of my ride, to get back to the trail from the vet's.

I tried to get the shot (I was going a blazing 16mph) but the shutter caught the wrong moment in the sign's blinking.

The water is high now (something about a week or more of rain).

Humbug Creek from wooden bike bridge

The wildlife is enjoying it.

I've been riding over these concrete swales on the bike paths for years now and it never occurred to me to wonder why there were there.

Well. Duh. For when the pond overflows! The water is about 1 foot down and 2 feet away from the path.

And for the first time in several years, I saw new house construction! How strange.

10 March 2012

'round and 'round and 'round we go


Saturday, March 10th

12 miles around Lake Natoma with the newly renamed casual bicycling group. We are now The Hammerin' Wheels Casual Bikers Club (or Casual Wheelers) (instead of Sacramento Area Casual Bikers (SAC Bikers)).

Disappointingly, today I had more no-shows than actual bodies. Oh well. Except for one person, all were Repeat Offenders, so for once I actually knew everyone's name! The world may now end.

The trail was pretty crowded but everybody cooperated so no worries. I did sort of freak out one horse (he gave me a rolling eye and a head toss). I was already stopped so I'm glad that's all he did. I suppose I could have dived off my trike into the lake if Mr. Ed got too antsy.

My sweetheart did great today (the first time on this loop with NO walking up hills). He got lots of encouragement from the other riders so I think this bike riding thing is turning out to be a Good Thing.

Other Recumbent Dude showed up again. His trike is settling in and some things need a little adjustment, but overall he still likes his ride.

He had an awful time today with his pedal straps (he's gone the 'strap your feet to the pedal' route instead of getting special bike shoes and cleats and all that). He did notice that he could not go as fast w/out the straps (his heels kept hitting the cranks). I'm wondering now if the ANGLE of the straps was putting his feet at an angle to interfere with the cranks.

My sweetheart uses old-school toe clips and straps (think 1970s). We were talking about pedaling efficiency and I mentioned the "scrap mud off your shoe backwards" that is often touted as a good way to visualize providing power to the whole circuit of the crank.
Well. That's not going to work with toe clips, so I don't know what to tell him (short of getting shoes and cleats and pedals and all that).

Rain in the forecast for a few days (maybe I can finally test my super rain gear).


08 March 2012

"You're pretty fast on that thing"


Thursday, March 8th

12 miles of fine fine hills

I had said that I'd do my hill route again. Well. Three months later, I finally did.

I used my phone (Tracks program) to make a gpx track. I'm not sure it does a great job, but I'll leave it alone (ridewithgps offered to amend my gps information. I declined). All I care about is that my time was nearly the same. So at least I have not gotten any slower.

I was passed many times by other bicyclists, one of whom gave me my title quote. Should I confess I had seen him in my rearview and stopped slacking quite so much? Naw. I won't admit to anything!

Spring is here.

At the end of my ride, I finally saw a Bakefiets in person!

 There was some mysterious trail-side construction on Oak Parkway

and I had to attempt a trick shot of my new tires.

Dig that checkerboard!

Group ride on Saturday, then we'll see what happens (I do want to get out on the Delta to ride before it gets too hot. Picking a day w/out wind is the real trick).