Was it this forum that was going bananas for ultra-narrow drop bars on road bikes a few years ago? I remember the very very long posts about it, but not where I saw them.
Agreed. It seems like $2K gets you a lot of bike ($1600 for the one I rode), and a lighter wheelset can be had with little effort.
Did about 60 miles around the country highways and farm roads out east and south of Richmond, VA today. Flat to gently rolling, narrow roads, not too many cars for the most part. I live in the east end of the city, so you’re through the commercial shipping / warehousing belt pretty qiuckly and out into farms and forests within a 15-20 minutes. Coming from the Bay Area, I’m still startled by how quickly the city just falls away.
Most of the riding is through road cut through forests or stands of trees, but occasionally you’ll get a big dramatic vista if there’s a field planted on high ground. Getting pretty far out along 650, I ran across this introduction to a horror movie:
That’s a hand-carved sign at the start of a dirt road ten miles from the nearest town, advertising a graveyard. That’s some Blair Witch level nope, as attractive as the road looks.
Some background. Oh, good, it’s where they buried some people during the Civil War. Cool, cool, definitely not scared about being haunted by revenant spirits or anything.
These markers are all over the place in Richmond (as are a lot of really fucking unpleasant statues to the soldiers and generals of the Confederacy, but that’s another story). As a CA native, I’m sort of befuddled by the reality of historical shit having happened, like, here, but, a long time ago. In my hometown commemorative plaques are more “Mel Brooks ate a sandwich here in 1973!!” not “the brave men of the Union Army gave their lives upon this hill”
There’s also a lot of randomly beautiful spots way the hell out in the woods, like this lil Monet-type jam here:
Lily pads, some felled trees, nice clouds. Just off a narrow country road, thirty miles or so from Richmond.
No new pictures of the bike, it’s the same one I rode in the long-winded post I wrote up earlier on this page. I’m trying to do a longer ride once a week in preparation for a fall of 200k rides. I’ve been messing with my saddle tilt, which is sort of helpful, aiming the nose up a tiny bit helps to plant my sit bones more firmly on the saddle, which helps relax the muscles in the small of my back.
[quote=Wintage Townie]I’m a little biased about Kona, but it’s hard to think of a better production “all-road” bike than the Rove.
Also, I hate wide road bars. I’m running 40cm on my Elephant, and that’s only because 38cm bars have limited options and don’t fit my Swift box in the middle.[/quote]
I have a friend who has a Rove and he’s pretty much in love with it. That is the bike he rides when there is any chance of gravel.
What a whirlwind of a bike trip. I’ll tell you about it when I get my actual pics uploaded.
I did a paid giant group ride yesterday. Whatever. It was a mini-STP in St. Paul and it was pretty fun.
The real story, though, is that my 3 year old daughter did a 47 mile ride with me and didn’t even complain. Fuck yeah.
The other story is that hauling 70+ pounds of human and trailer will make even a very easy 47 mile ride feel difficult and epic.
That sounds amazing! Im really excited to get my kid into longer rides, the back of our Xtracycle currently has two outdoor patio cushions on it, plus a little bag for carrying interesting rocks and flowers she wants to bring home. You’ve got your kid on a trail-along thing now, yes?
Follow up question: why are you crouching like Spiderman in that picture
Yeah, mostly on the weehoo, though I still prefer the xtracycle for around town putzing. The weehoo is a bit much if you’re getting her in and out frequently. It’s also a PITA to handle when not in motion. But for actual riding, it’s without compare.
I’m crouching because I wanted to hug Ada!
I need to get into WeeHoo life, as soon as I dial in my current sport touring setup and also get my road bike overhauled and also get a dynamo setup for the Xtracycle and holy god when does it stop
I’m 6’6", most of the pictures of me with my kid feature me crouching or leaning at some weird angle, looking all like some bit player in a Salvador Dali painting.
Nipped out at lunch time with a work mate, took in a couple of hills over the road from work. 480 metres climbing in 51 mins. Was initially intending to do a gravel loop but my buddy forgot his gravel tires so we rode the seal. Sucked to be me. It’s so good to see the sun out tho.
On Sunday, I rode a fairly popular way out of town west to the Washington County Panhandle Trail. I took the trail about 20km out to some really nice country roads, with a good mix of dirt and pavement. I’ve found taking the trail is nice because you don’t have to do an hour and a half of prologue to get to the good stuff. The PNW has miles upon miles of beautiful logging roads, whereas SWPA has fracking access routes.
Ended up being a ~100km day, but relatively flat for the area with about 1200 meters of elevation.
Sorry, I CBA to make these pics look nice, the lighting is just too harsh.
We did a bikepacking trip with one of the guys from Surly last weekend, our shop puts it on every year.
In previous years, they’ve driven a van of demo bikes up for us to ride around, but this year they only shipped out whichever bikes were requested, so I took an ECR. I still have it, gotta bring it back one of these days. I wonder if they’ll ask for it back someday?
The group before departure, before we realized what a deathmarch this was going to be. We did this route: http://www.bikepacking.com/routes/family-bikepacking-salida/ and we were under the impression that if these people did it with kid trailers, it’d be pretty easy.
Well, not so much.
The first mile was pretty good, but it quickly turned into a 90 degree (temperature), very steep ascent.
Ladybiek had been sick all week, and tried to do the ride anyway, but she ended up getting severe heat exhaustion, migranes, and nausea at about the 6 mile point. Begrudgingly, she ended up coasting back down the hill to go get the truck. We were originally under the impression that parts of our route were going to be inaccessible by car, so we ditched the idea of a SAGwagon. Turns out we were wrong, so she ended up providing support for the route, which proved to be an essential lifesaving decision.
Top of the first climb. By this point, another rider had dropped out from the heat, and many of the other riders started ditching their extra water in the truck. See, there was no filterable water on this route, so every rider was instructed to carry 6-10 liters of water for the trip. FUCK THAT NOISE. We had about 8 camelbaks and countless platypus bags of water in the jeep by this point.
18 miles and 3800’ of gain later, everybody was happy to be at camp.
The jeep proved to be essential again, because I woke up hungover and dehydrated, unable to ride. Another rider sliced a tire and decided to ride in the truck as well. I’m not proud about taking the easy way out, but it sure was comfortable. Also, everyone was glad to have the several gallons of water and cold beer that she drove up that night. It was also really nice to be able to take the trash in the jeep instead of making people carry it.
trigger warning: blood
One of our riders washed out on some loose sand and ended up ripping enough skin off to get down to the tendon. Score #8 for the jeep, we had an extensive first aid kit (larger than what you’d normally carry on a bike) so we got him all patched up.
After we patched him up, we did some slow driving exploring, to give the riders some peace and quiet.
LB and I are going to attempt this route again in the springtime, when the temps don’t go above 90 degrees and there is water to filter.
Nice pix, is that the ECR top right? Looks damn fun anyway.
Jumped over the road again for some more hills today in my lunch hour. The Hutt Valley is a bit like a skate bowl with MTB trails on the Eastern Hills and seal on the Western hills. If my buddy had changed his tires like he was supposed to we could have taken in some very cool gravel. Instead we did 550 metres elevation on the seal in 57 mins. Its was blowing like a mofo. At least its dry.
Nah, that’s an instigator 2.0, which is 26 inch/2.75". Probably a lot of fun, never ridden one. My only ECR pic is in PYBT from last week.
edit: there’s a pic of it in pic #3, bottom row, third from the right. It has red ortlieb panniers. (Would normally use a buttrocket, but we were told to carry so much water that I wanted the pan-yays.)
Oh yeah. I thought there was something different about the proportions.
I went for a ride yesterday so here’s a vidya.
Lunch-time CX ride. The uphill single track was good but then we had to go back a different way when we realised the paddocks were closed for lambing. Stink. No gravel descent.