I got a new-to-me bike

I got yet another bike. :-)

It’s not as bad as it sounds. This summer, we cleaned the house.1Okay, just the garage. But that’s quite an accomplishment. I got rid of a road bike that I haven’t used in decades. I no longer want to wear spandex and have distracted drivers speed by me too close on two-lane country roads. I also got rid of Sage, a bike I commuted to work twelve months of the year2And lunch rides, and weekend rides, and ? and probably rode more than 6,000 miles. The number of components Sage needed to be serviced and/or replaced to get back to proper running order exceeded her value. So I donated her to a local bike center that repairs and sells donated bikes. I hope she finds a nice, new home. She deserves it.

I had only my mountain bike converted to a commuter bike with fenders, rack, and non-knobby tires. It’s still a great bike, just not as comfortable as I’d like. I’ll be keeping it.3This last weekend, Suzi, Jamison, and I rode a new section of bike path in the Gorge between Wyeth State Park and Starvation Creek Park. As that’s my new normal for biking, I figured I needed a bike to match. And I still need to post pictures from the ride/day. Posted!

Searching Craigslist, I found an Electra Townie in great shape and not too far away. I put one of our new roof bike racks on the CRV then Suzi and I headed out to take a look.

I got a great deal.4Less than a third of its price new for as-new condition. Seems good to me. YMMV. The sellers have a little more space in their garage. And Darth5Still trying the name on for size, but it seems appropriate. I’m open to other suggestions. ;-) has a new home.6And a new bell. Well, it’s new to him. Used to be on Sage. Perfect! Tonight he’ll get Sage’s mirror and I’ll be ordering a rack. Ah… :-) Success!

I’m looking forward to riding Darth this weekend.

Snow Dusting

Biking in the cold is a challenge.

I’ve figured out how to stay warm. I wear my rain suit over my street clothes, a beanie under my helmet, waterproof, full-fingered gloves, and clear protective glasses. I’m plenty warm.

That’s the problem. By the time I get to work, I’m too warm. I’m experimenting with unzipping my jacket and riding slower, but I still have work to do.

One unexpected discovery: it’s easier to maintain cooler temperatures in the rain — the cool rain on my suit and face cools me quite nicely.

If you’re biking this time of year, how do you regulate your temperature throughout the ride?

Biking in the New Year

The New Year is here with beautiful weather: sunny and 50+. To celebrate, I rode my bike to Starbucks with my new Nook in my pocket. Woo hoo! A whole 4.07 miles on the bike on January 1. ;-)

Because I know I’ll want to know what my bike odometer read at the beginning of the year, here it is: 71,758.1Yeah, I don’t know how the reading got that high. I’m absolutely positive I haven’t ridden my bike that far. I blame a cosmic ray, a glitch, or something. That means I rode 560 miles since July 23, 2011. This year, I expect to ride even more miles.

Beauty in the Mundane

This morning, while riding my bike to work, I noticed the beauty in the mundane. So often, I ignore what I’ve already experienced: the patch of pink roses Albertson’s tends next to their store, the clouds in the sky, the smells of flowers, and grass, and the pancakes, syrup, and bacon from IHOP.

I find when I’m riding slowly on my bike, everything seems new.

Maybe I’m just trying to justify taking (and posting) yet more pictures from my regular photo spot.

Day 13 on the bike this year.

Biking in the Mist: Lessons Learned

Even though today’s weather forecast is rain, I pedaled my bike to work. Along the way, hearing raindrops sprinkle on my helmet, I learned a few things:

  • When the weather rock is damp, the humidity is 100%. Don’t expect much evaporative cooling. It’s better to slow down.
  • Drinking an extra-hot white mocha while riding may save time over sitting down to drink it, but it made me hot. It’s better to keep the ride slower or take the time to enjoy it properly. Skipping it isn’t really an option. ;-) c[_]
  • Handlebars are not cup holders, but brake levers make great foam catchers.
  • Covered bike parking makes biking on questionable days worth the risk. Thanks, Intel!
  • Regardless of the weather, biking to work is fun.

And worse weather makes for better bragging rights. Day 12 on the bike this year.