General items


Friday, September 26, 2014

This is the time of year when the fall colors in the Utah high country can be spectacular, particularly around Navajo Lake. I always try to get some late season rides in while the weather is still good because when the curtain of winter drops for the season it is usually final! This weekend was the last weekend expected to have decent weather so I was on it!

Starting off on the Navajo Lake loop.

Starting off on the Navajo Lake loop from the Dike trailhead

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20140526_111216Recently, I have had the opportunity to spend some time in southern California with my bicycle. When I head out on the bike a good destination for me is Oceanside, which has a great beach and kind of a funky old town. It is not a high end community but has the full flavor of SoCal, with interesting people, many restaurants and shops. It is like the Portland of SoCal, weird but in a good way! Not only is it great to ride to the ocean on a beautiful day, but there is lots to see and do there. One of my new favorite stops in Oceanside is Pacific Coast Cycles , which is anything but your “normal” bike shop.  Pacific Coast Cycles is an anomaly in that it is truly a bicycle shop for people who love bikes. They are not about selling the latest model of superbike accessory or team kit but more about getting you what you need, even if that is only information.

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This fall my wife Sara and took a trip to Italy; Tuscany in particular where we toured the area by motorcycle. We had over 10 days to see the region and covered over 1200 km during the trip. We saw the countryside from Cinque Terre to Siena and many of the backroads in between. All the while I kept an eye on the cycling opportunities in the region. After a thorough investigation I can report that the area is a cycling paradise, particularly the area north of Lucca as well as the Chianti region of Tuscany. The trip also helped me get a feel for the area of Chianti where the vintage L’Eroica event is held each October. For more on L’Eroica click here. If you want to read more on our adventure, here is a full detailed account of the trip, or if you just want the quick slideshow click here. We are back home now and I am making plans to hopefully return in 2012 to ride the bike. To keep track of my preparation for next year you can follow the L’Eroica posts.

I have been a little unhappy with the load carrying position of my bar mounted Berthoud bag. The bag itself is great and I like the supplied mounting hardware, but mounting it on the bars puts the bag pretty high up and a little far forward. I wanted it to be a little lower down and I also wanted to get back a little room on the handlebars for computers and other accessories. Here is what I came up with.

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I thought I would share my idea for a rear bag mount on a brevet bike. I have never been fully satisfied with many of the options that I have seen and used over the years, both functionally and aesthetically. I have used racks with trunks, seat post mounted tailrider bags and dangling seat mounted bags. I eventually came up with this idea which I have not seen before. I think it is a simple, elegant and functional solution to adding carrying capacity to almost any bike. It is both economical and versatile as well as ridiculously simple!

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First, let me offer the definition for a club;  “a group of persons organized for the mutual support and benefit of it’s members and their common interest”.  In the case of a local bicycling club, riding with friends or promoting cycling issues in a local community are generally the focus, and the main reasons why many people join.  This can be expanded to include supporting local cycling events which are often helpful as fundraisers for the club. (more…)

Posted in absentia; durante el viaje en España

This was to be the last prime day riding in the high country above Cedar City. My loop would start at Navajo Lake which sits at 9000 feet elevation, just above Zion National Park. The last of the Fall colors were still visible around the lake and the trail had dried out nicely from recent snowfalls. The campgrounds were empty and there were few fishermen out. I cruised the backside of the lake loop around to the Virgin River Rim Trail and started to climb. In the shade of the trees the trail was a bit muddier, getting more-so the higher I went. Once I hit the ridge top though (over 10,000 feet) the soil was a little rockier and there was less mud so the good riding continued.  The views opened up and temps were about 50 degrees with no wind and clear skies, it was a beautiful day for late October.

A stunning day at Navajo Lake.

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