29 September 2013

Four Footed Frolic

#291 / #96

Red Leader took a ride last Sunday after my 44 mile ride.
Then on Wednesday (yes, several days ago), we went out together on our usual ride on the American River Trail.

Now, it was several days ago, and my memories have faded a bit, but I do remember some things: it was good to ride with my sweetheart, it was nice and cool, and we were entertained by a half-grown coyote who was hanging around the trail. He stared at us and we stared at him. Saw him on the way back also.

I also got to yell at a German Shepherd Dog who was off leash and totally and utterly fascinated by Red Leader on his trike. Before we rode by, the dog was contentedly trotting along his owner's side. By the time RL had ridden past the dog, the dog was in the trail, looking somewhat baffled yet interested. I yelled, "Ha, Hup, Git!" (all I could think of at the time) and the dog's owner called his dog back. Everybody in earshot of me looked around, startled. I am loud.

Anyway, that's about all I remember. I missed our Saturday ride (Red Leader went by himself) due to other obligations.

CU and remember, rubber side down!

22 September 2013

Fall is here!


Red Leader declined to get up early today and ride down to the workshop at Alphabet. So I rode down by myself.

We've been starting our ride down there at William Pond park. Today I decided to get some more miles and start at Sunrise boat launch.

44 miles with a 2 hour break in the middle. I'm tired but not hurting. Just perfect!

The weather was also perfect: cool and breezy and overcast in the morning (I used a windbreaker for a little while) and cool and sunny in the afternoon.

I saw no other recumbents on my ride down there (made up for by the awesome numbers of recumbents in the shop) and 5 on my way back, two trikes, and three bikes, one of them a tandem.

The nuts are still all over the trails, but many of them got washed off the trail by yesterday's heavy rain. That rain, however, made some impressive mud.

I was a little early for the workshop, so I detoured to Discovery Park, where all the brick bathrooms were locked, leaving me to push my poor trike through mud to the second worse portapotty it has ever been my 'fortune' to use. I touched nothing except the door.

Leaving Discovery the mud left the tires in a most entertaining fashion, flying off the tire straight up, straight back, and straight into my face. I kept my mouth shut until most of it was gone.

At the shop, I talked to Hugh and we decided it was time to put a new cassette on my bike. I have a brand new and shiny pile of gears on the back. Same as before (ICE's semi custom Shimano Capreo) but it works so well! I had not realized how awful my shifting had gotten. Hugh also adjusted my brakes, and got my indexed shifting set up (I tend to leave it on friction). My chain is not significantly worn, so we left well enough alone.

My shifter cables are a bit sticky, so I have two brand new cables that I'll try my hand at installing. Time to hit the books (Zinn's mountain bike book).

21 September 2013

Forgetful, I am

#289 / #94

Wednesday, September 18th

Here it is Saturday, and I'm trying to remember what we did on Wednesday (when I forgot to write a blog post).

Oh yeah. We went for a ride, on the American River Trail, from Sunrise to Wm Pond and back. I'll bet you could have figured that out without me.

The weather was wonderful, cool and breezy. We left a little earlier than usual, so the traffic getting off the highway was non-existent.

No mechanical or other problems.

I still have not put my cyclecomputer back on the trike, so I had no idea how fast we were going. Faster than I though since Strava reported some new personal records for me. Wooo!

Riding tomorrow, I hope (that's Sunday, if you care).

15 September 2013

Land o' Nuts

#288 / #93

P-p-p-pop. Bang!






It is fall in Northern California, which means things fall. The temperature, the leaves. But most of all the nuts. Tree nuts, all over the trails. We on trikes have three times the chance for TINGs! with our three tracks.

Red Leader and I had intended to start in Folsom's parking garage, but it was being used as "for pay" parking for some giant sidewalk sale (flea market?). So we headed over to the Glenn St. Lightrail station, and got on the trail that way.

We went from Folsom to Sunrise and back again, eschewing the north side of the river. On the way back, we decided to take the Folsom Parkway Rail Trail from the outlet mall back to Glenn. Aside from the horrible placement of the pushbutton crossing signals, it was nice. Shady, with - you guessed it - more p-p-p-p-p-pop! Despite the tree nuts, a nice 16 mile ride.

Not a single other recumbent was seen, but we did see another troop of bicycle merit badge Scouts riding along. The kids sure liked our rides!

No flats or other mishaps.



11 September 2013

The fit flat flit

#287 / #92

Red Leader and I pulled our trikes out of the car at Sunrise, prior to heading down to Wm Pond for what has become our regular Wednesday evening Bike Date.

My rear tire was flat. Boo hoo, poor me!

So, since I had not yet put the seat on my trike, I stuck it under the frame as a prop (worked great) and removed the rear wheel, putting a new tube in. Decided to tempt Fate and put the wheel back on before inflating (very tight clearance between the frame and the tire and the fender).

In wrestling the wheel back in place, I knocked a right side fender stay loose. Red Leader learned then (he's very helpful) what I knew from bitter experience - the HP Velotechnick fender stay thingies are a PAIN. So my expensive bike has a wad of Gorilla tape holding the fender from bouncing around until I can take the fender stay clamp thing apart and find a new, non-chewed up, nut. Not the first time for trail-side Gorilla tape repairs on the fender.

We ride away, a bit later than usual, but plenty of light left.
Many small fast pacelines, and a packs and packs of runners. Wow. Lots of turkeys also.

We turn around at Wm Pond, flipping on our front and rear lights. I realize after a few hundred yards that my headlight is aimed for cars, so it is probably obnoxious to passing cyclists. It is not dark yet, but other cyclists' light are BRIGHT. So I stop at the top of the bridge to adjust it, and I can't get the clamp to tighten down. I give up and hope that my bright yellow high-viz shirt is enough to other twilight riders to see me. My tail light works fine.

I ride like mad, setting 3 new personal records on Strava segments, catching up to Red Leader, letting his headlight serve as my warning to oncoming cyclists.

I'd like to get RL in some high viz clothing, as the combo of black shorts, red and black trike, black helmet, and medium blue shirt is not very visible at all. He demurs, grumbling something about clowns. I'll settle for lights. For now.

04 September 2013


#286 / #91

It was great to get out today with Red Leader, on the lovely and busy American River Trail. I saw 5 pacelines, or maybe 1 paceline once and 2 pacelines twice. They were moving fast. Also saw two recumbent trikes, no recumbent bikes.

A Northern California rider reported (on bikeforums.net) that he and his buddies were followed by a ranger on a motorcycle during their last ride on the trail. We saw one motorized ranger today, but he was cruising the parking lot at the boat launch. I don't know if he headed out on the trail later or if he had a LIDAR gun.

The smoke from the fires in Northern California is mostly gone, so the only smoke we smelled was from the several burnt areas along the trail. Red Leader's heart rate was pretty high, so he didn't keep up his usual blistering pace. Which was OK after two weeks off the trikes (except for my little ride on Monday).

It seems to me that I keep my conditioning from bicycling longer than RL does. Maybe that's just because I have more miles then he does.

I had one mechanical today, a missed shift in front - the chain hung up half on the middle and half on the big ring. Easy to pick it off with my fingers and put it in the right place. I didn't even have to leave my seat! I might need to look at my front derailler adjustment.

It will be hot again this weekend, so I don't know if we'll do any long rides.

02 September 2013

Bohemian Rapsody


Today, I abandoned my house guests left over from Sunday and went down to Folsom for a quick bike ride. I'd intended to do at least 18 miles, but it was not only raining (no biggie) but Thundering and Lightening! (very very frightening) so I bailed out and made a 5 mile loop instead.

I didn't see very many riders out, but there were a few hanging out in the parking lot where I started, probably waiting for a little break in the weather. I saw one jogger, and several walkers toting coffee cups from the coffee place.

That's all, folks.