Sunday, April 18, 2010

Another Club Ride

I did another club ride today, a 44 miler starting in New Haven. We headed over to Woodburn, then up to Grabill, then back down to New Haven. I purposely didn't take the camera again, because my past experiences with club rides have had me desperately gripping the handlebars and pedaling with every bit of energy I could muster. Today was a different story - I had plenty of energy, and was near the front of the pack all the way. I've been reading a little bit about nutrition, and that seems to have helped me. In addition, I'm putting in over 100 miles per week commuting, not including weekend rides. The thing I didn't expect was the people I normally ride with are toward the back of the pack and I enjoy riding with them.

After I got home, Alex and I took the dog to Metea Park and walked on the north side. Cedar Creek, here, divides the north side from the south side.

Spring is early here, and these forest tent caterpillars normally come out when the tree leaves are a little farther on. Back in June, 1990, these little buggers completely defoliated several thousand acres of forest land in northern Wisconsin.

I took photos of a few wildflowers blooming. This is a trillium.

Spring beauty.

The venerable Ohio Buckeye.

And redbud. This is the peak now for redbud trees. When we lived in northern Wisconsin, I really missed these trees.

Up close.

Happy riding!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Concerned About Global Warming?

Whether or not you agree global warming is happening, there are a bunch of us concerned about the level of CO2 in the atmosphere. On NPR tonight, I heard Bill McKibben talk about his new book EAARTH and about There is a simple, but cool You Tube video there. You might like it, but you might not.

By the way, global warming is real, get over arguing about it and do something about it. Ride a bike. Turn off your lights. Live simply. I know you can do it. Good Luck!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I didn't ride to work today, but I rode 19 miles tonight after supper. The weather was perfect - very little wind, warm, and sunny.

I stopped on the Van Zile Bridge over the St. Joe River. Just downstream from here, near where Cedar Creek empties into the river, is a new bald eagle nest with an adult eagle on the nest. I've talked to a few people who have been watching the nest, and we think the adult is sitting on eggs, or maybe young chicks. This is the first eagle nest in this area for many, many years. It is good to have them back. Several miles down river from this eagle nest is another eagle nest with an adult on the nest.

I rode the Trek tonight. That steely goodness felt great!

This weekend I discovered the visor on my helmet snaps off. Here it is with the visor on:

Here it is with the visor off (much more streamlined!):

I did get to do a club ride on Sunday. I rode over to Leo High School and met up with the club - there were probably close to 50 riders! After 10 miles riding all together, the 20 milers turned back, while the fast group and the not-so-fast group continued on for another 10 miles, before heading back. I rode with the not-so-fast group. We rode in a double pace line. Once we turned around, Larry and I rode in the front to help break the wind (no, not BREAK WIND) for the others. The ride leader yelled at Larry and me to slow down! Wow, that went right to my head. We got back to the high school at 41 miles since leaving it, but I did a little extra before I got home, so my ride totaled 53 miles.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Great Spring Day

Tulips opened and the birds are singing. And the wind is blowing.

I rode up to the high school for a club ride today and waited and waited for people to show up. Nobody showed up. Then I realized the club ride is tomorrow. So I went on my own 29 mile ride today. While it was chilly and the wind was strong, the sun was shining and warmer weather is on the way.

Happy riding!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Awesome Sunset

We had a dandy thunderstorm tonight. Just before sundown the storm passed and I snapped these photos out my back door.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Long Day in the Saddle

Alex and I dropped our daughter off at the parents of one of her friends yesterday morning. They (the parents) are escorting a group of kids to Florida for spring break. Alex and I went to breakfast, then I got on the bike at 11:00 am for a long bike ride.

I pass this house on my way to and from work - It's a cool looking home, but I wonder why they built it in the woods. The woods here are generally less than 40 acres, with crop land all around. Now people are dividing up the woods and building homes inside the woods. By the time they get grass established, trees start dying and they have a large hole in the woods.

This little guy hopped on my arm at the 6 mile mark, and stayed on until somewhere around the 30 mile mark when I turned directly into the strong headwind.

From the point I lost the little guy above, I rode another 25 miles straight into the wind. By the time I got here (the little town of Roanoke), I was pretty well beat.

I stopped by the gas station and bought some granola bars, Gatorade, and water, then hit the road again. This old iron bridge is still in place, southeast of town. It crosses the Little River, which flows into the Wabash River.

When I left Roanoke, I rode with a cross wind for the next 23 miles on this road. The wind was blowing hard enough that I had trouble getting blown around in the gusts, but this was much more preferable to riding directly into the wind. Oh, this road is also a part of Adventure Cycling Association's Northern Tier Route. I turned north just before I got to Monroeville.

The road north was sweet - I had no problem cruising at 20 mph, and for a good long while I was riding at 23 mph! I snapped this photo as I passed through Maples - Maples is just a blip on the map where the road crosses a railroad track.

Pretty soon I passed just east of New Haven, and continued north riding at a magical pace.

When I got home, I had covered 97.5 miles, so I rode to the end of our road and back to make this my first century of the year.

I didn't post this yesterday since Alex had supper waiting for me, and after supper, well, I took the evening off.

I almost forgot, the Brooks saddle I got for Christmas is wonderful. After the long ride I had no soreness, and absolutely no numbness.

Happy riding!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Day

It was a great day today (yesterday too), with a high of 81F, albeit briefly. I was in Indianapolis today for a meeting, so no bike commute, but I rode tonight.

Look Ma, no long pants or long sleeve shirt!

The south wind has been blowing hard the last two days, but by sundown it had moderated. I am getting used to riding in the drops again.

I've been getting a lot of good bike commuting in the last three weeks. Pondero's S240 has given me the camping bug. I am going to try one soon at Chain 'O Lakes State Park. Maybe a longer trip this summer.

Happy riding!