Thursday, August 04, 2011

Of Two Rides

Yesterday was about the difference between two rides that I took. One off road, and one on. The off road ride happened in the morning out at Camp Ingawanis. They just had a race out there Sunday, and I had heard that the trails were in great shape. So, I took out the Sawyer with the Gates Carbon Drive Center Track on it to give it another trail test.

Got a Carbon Fiber Kickstand!
The trails were really great, well........except where some big ol' tree crashed down through the canopy and blocked the trail! Right at the furthest west point as you go in, at the turn to the right, where you go down hill for a bit, there it was. It looked very odd. As far as I can tell, the tree, which was very tall and had no real lower branches to speak of, looked to have just rotted in half, with the top portion crashing down through the shorter trees, and breaking some of these off.

The blockage is immense. Not sure how that'll get dealt with, because it would be a massive job with a chainsaw as it stands now. At any rate, you have to bushwhack your way around it now. No two ways about it.

Besides this check, it was smooth sailing. Spiders are making their presence known by stringing webs across the trail again. It is that time of the year when you will get that. It wasn't very bad yesterday, but I bet it will be in the coming weeks. First guy through will get the honors each day!

It was coolish, lower humidity, and bright and clear for this ride. I got done what I needed to get done, and left for home. Legs felt great for the first time since the Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitational. Powered up the climbs really well on the single speed. Oh! Yeah, and about that Center Track: Good stuff, performance-wise. Very nice. I'll have more to say on this soon.....

This Side Up?
The next ride was a fun, cargo bike ride. I had to box up the Airborne Goblin and send it to the bike shop so it could be picked up for shipping.

I love doing this sort of thing by bicycle. It is so much more relaxing and fun than driving my truck. There is only the issue of the "donor bike" I used to affix the Xtracycle Free Radical to.

It is an old 80's era Schwinn, and really isn't a bad bike to hitch this long tail to, but with the size of the loads I can get to carry on it, I am experiencing a lot of flexy, flapping around. Steel tubes that were never designed for this sort of loading, ya know?  I am pretty serious about committing to doing more of this sort of riding and hauling in the future, so my mind was running across the options today.

I could easily get a Surly Big Dummy or a Trek Transport. The frame for the Big Dummy would easily take the Xtracycle stuff I already have. The Trek comes with some cool features like fenders, swapable dropouts for a possible internal geared hub switch, and the side racks fold up. Plus it has a nice front rack too. Decisions...

Another idea was to look at a Surly trailer, keep the Schwinn as is for errands, groceries, and what not, and do the "heavy lifting" with the trailer, which would fit about any 29"er I have around here.

Well, at any rate, the ol' Goblin boxed up was heavy! I was swaying and wagging up hill most of the way, and then back home empty it was just peachy. Then I mowed the lawn, and that zapped the last bit of energy I had in me. By this time it was hot, and of course, that played into the feelings of wanting to sleep at 4pm quite a bit!

Ahh! All in a good day's work.....

1 comment:

MG said...

Man, once you ride a big dummy, it makes the conversion bikes feel crazy noodly... Even when you use a stiffer bike than you used! The connection points are where a lot of the flex comes from, so in eliminating those, you get rid of a lot of the flex. It's good. I want to get one for myself too now but my recent unemployment has put those plans on hold for a bit. We'll get it done at some point soon...