Monday, March 31, 2008

$eattle to Portland 2008 plans

I just signed up Tricia and myself for Seattle to Portland. YIKES! What with add ons and bus rides and parking and 2 hotel nights (not counting motels we'll use on the drive up and back) it came to a whole lot more than I'd thought. And that's before commemorative jerseys and mid-point lodging.

I started signing us up and it just got out of hand, but it was too late to stop once I'd hit the first button. The ride itself is only $85. It's when I started adding up all the other smallish pieces it went through the roof. At least they provide food on the ride. And I'm sure gas will be back to a buck a gallon by this summer, so that won't be an issue.

We had a great time last year, so maybe this year will be as good. Maybe better as we can turn th trip into family extravaganza by visiting Tricia's new child of her child (we've so far avoiding the G-word around here.)

If you're going on this year's STP please leave a comment and say what jersey you'll be in and bike you'll be on. Heck, there are only a zillion people there. Maybe we'll see you.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Carbon Handlebars. Why?

Tricia wanted some of those nifty flat top aero bars, not for aerodynamics, but to have a larger platform for lean on. Being the guy I am I got her some Ritchey Streem Carbon Bars and installed them after she got done pretending they were animal horns. I'd read that carbon bars helped lessen road vibration, so I bought myself some Kestrel EMS Pro Carbon Bars and put them on my Kestrel.
Tricia likes her bars. I even double-wrapped parts to make 'em nicer. But mine? I'm not sure I'm noticing any difference in ride quality. If there is, it's minimal, and not worth the the cost of the bars or even having to retape them. They're fine bars, but I can't tell any difference between these and my old Ritchey WCS aluminum bars. Oh well, live and learn.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Offensive Vacaville Reporter column

The Vacaville Reporter recently ran a lame "humor" column that included
"I hear they are remaking Sly Stalone's '70s picture "Death Race 2000." Here's hoping they film on the back roads of Solano and Yolo counties."

Great. Let's encourage people to run over cyclists. It was so wrong and off putting I wrote the letter to the editor
. They actually ran my letter, and also ran Tricia's letter.

A few days later the editor offered a low-sincerity apology that included:
"We're sorry the column wasn't received in the spirit it was intended."

I wrote them and pointed out that this isn't isn't exactly the same as "I'm sorry, we were wrong." but I guess it'll have to do.

I publicly challenge the editor and reporter to go for a bike ride with a local club as part of a real apology.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Last day of spring break

Tricia and I took my last day of spring break to do the Diablo Loop, plus a bit of wandering around the edges of Walnut Creek. I'd heard there were turkeys on Mt, Diablo (insert your own joke here) but I'd never seen any myself. Then, just a few miles past the Northgate entry there they were, doing their full on turkey thing with the feathers and all, right by the road. It was a weather-perfect day, and the mountain was beautiful. Only one driver tried to kill Tricia, and he missed. So all in all, just another grand day in California.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Recovery and flowers

Tricia and I had Friday off, so we went or a short 25 mile recovery ride. I thought I was feeling pretty good after the Marin climb-a-thon of the day before, but yikes, I could barely move. Just riding at 70% heart rate was a pain. I felt so slow. But it was a beautiful day, so I convinced Tricia to play model in mustard.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Curtis Sawyer/Huckleberry Pete

"Curtis Sawyer/Huckleberry Petes Spring Break Tour" took place Thursday. We should have been working on important stuff, but heck, it was a beautiful day and do we really need any more excuse than that? So we met at the Marin Civic Center, popped out over Lucas Valley and ended up in Petaluma for lunch. We knew we'd done the right thing when we came across this sign. Clearly the ride was blessed by the gods. Along the way we picked up fellow BikeForum cyclist ConstantRider. We ended up with right about 63 miles. A grand time was had by all.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Yehuda Moon

This is pretty "inside baseball" or perhaps "inside cycling," but it cracks me up. It's a near daily cartoon about cycling. I didn't love it at first, but somehow I kept coming back to it. As I'm getting to know the characters I'm finding it funnier and funnier.
Yehuda Moon and the Kickstand Cyclery

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

California poppies on Diablo

It's hard to ride on Mt. Diablo in the spring. It's just too gorgeous. It's hard to know whether to keep riding, or stop every few feet to admire the mountain and maybe make photos. Making snapshots seems almost disrespectful. The mountain deserves a photographers full attention and vision. But Tuesday I was a cyclist, so I stopped and made a snapshot. Please forgive me.

DiabloScott, overlord of all things Diablo, has commanded I provide more info. Click these for larger, readable versions.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Tricia's morning commute

tricia morning commute
Originally uploaded by ccorlew
Tricia's ride to work takes her along the canal trail just a ways. This time of year the mustard is in bloom and it glows in the morning. Not a bad way to start the day in wonderful California.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Los Altos Hills memorial ride

Tricia and I joined about 1000 other cyclists in a memorial ride in memory of cyclists Kristy Gough and Matt Peterson who were killed when a sheriff's car crashed into them on a training ride to Stevens Canyon in the Los Altos hills.

The ride was really a procession. We took over the highway on the ride from Foothill College to the crash site. Though it was a sad event, it was good to get to be with so many other cyclists. Even though we didn't know Matt and Kristy, we know cyclists who know them, and we share the same community. We rode with our Nor Cal Bike Forum friends, which made the ride all the more meaningful for us.

Mercury News moving story on the ride.
Mercury News video

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Tricia and Curtis Los Vaqueros

Tricia and Curtis Los Vaqueros
Originally uploaded by ccorlew
You just gotta love California. Here is in early March, the flowers are in bloom, and weather is a sunny 70. It was a perfect day for a ride. We knocked off forty-something miles that included Los Vaqueros Reservoir and Empire Mine Road, smiling as we went. It wasn't a fast day, it was just plain 'ol fun.

The only bad part was dropping by 2Real Bicycles in Brentwood only to discover they'd gone out of business when we weren't looking. They were a nice bunch of people and I'm sorry to see them go. We always tried to buy something every time we went in, even if it was small. I guess it just wasn't enough.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

I'm not Tricia

The gang from NorCal went on a 52 mile ride all West Contra Costa. It was a bit windy, but still, it was great to get out after all the rain we've had. Tricia was a an educator conference, so Joyce went with me. She wanted to be sure no one would think she was my wife, so she wore an "I'm not Tricia" name tag. (Though Pete still referred to her as "The tall Tricia, AKA Joyce" in a post on bikeforums.)

Though the day started overcast, the sun came out and we ended with another miracle California day. I love this state even more when the mustard blooms.

The Kestrel seems like a better bike every time I ride it. I got to decent through the highly textured road of Franklin Canyon on this ride. In the past the road quality has beaten me up pretty well. Now, through the magic of carbon fiber, I felt just fine at the end. What a blast!