Friday, September 09, 2016

Friday News And Views

Update: Trans Iowa v13- I wanted to remind everyone that there is a bit of an announcement concerning registration ideas, (NOTE- Not an announcement of the opening of registration!) and you should check that out here. I am getting some early feedback on my ideas and so far it has all been positive. However; if there are any dissenting opinions, or folks that have an idea to share that they think might help, please feel free to share that in the comments or via e-mail @

I'm giving this about ten days to settle in and gather feedback after which I will render a final decision and announce registration details. All details that you will need to know will be released at that time. I would suggest that anyone e-mailing me concerning when/how/where registration is happening before the news comes out would be making a poor decision, so just don't do that, all right? Good. Thank you.

Adventure Road Biking- It isn't anything new.
You're Going To Get Sick Of This:

The bicycling industry is frantically trying to find that "thing" to get you interested in buying. doesn't matter what, just buy something, damnit!! The "niche-du-jour" this year and next will be "adventure road/all road" cycling. Bicycles will be proffered with the aim of getting you to think that you will be able to go anywhere and do anything on this new fangled bicycle that will become "the next big wave in cycling", or so it is hoped.

Yeah, many of these rigs are things that are close to what I would have been pounding the table to get six years ago, but it isn't so much the hardware I am thinking I am having an issue with, it is more about how the industry is missing the message. The marketers all have, pretty much to a brand, missed the "why" of riding off paved roads. If they even mention that being a thing at all, actually.

Ask anyone that does gravel events, or just enjoys being out in rural areas, why they cycle there, and you'll begin to see a common picture being painted. Less cars, peaceful, beauty, mind clearing, and other terms in those veins will be gathered from those cyclists. Have you heard any bicycling company pick up this narrative? What is more likely is that you will see companies selling out on their corporate head's comments about gravel bikes being stupid or unnecessary. I've already noted one such 180 degree turnabout. Irony- It's what happens when your company sees dollar signs.

I don't see the proper narrative and I don't think you will. Therefore, it is my prediction that the bean counters will find out that units are not moving in the "adventure road category" and the industry will start pumping out some other half-baked theme to sell whatever the next big thing is deemed to be. In the meantime, brace yourselves for an ear and eyeful of misguided messages about country biking.

I could add this to the stable in a heartbeat but for lack of $$$'s.
What Would You Buy?

So, what does strike me as being a bicycle that makes sense for my cycling? The thing is, and I won't lie, I have just about every kind of bicycle I'll ever need. Note: I said "need". Of course, there are a lot of bicycles I want to have. The thing is, I wouldn't hardly ever ride them.

That said, there are a couple of "holes" in my stable, and one of them is a tandem. I have a wife and two kids I could put behind me on a Powderkeg. Well........not all at once, of course! But I think that a tandem would be an asset to my family. The thing is, coming up with that kind of cabbage all at once is......well, if I am being 100% honest here, it isn't a top priority. I could use the thousands fixing up some things on the house, or for buying the kids school clothes, or....well, you get the picture. It is an excuse, and it is incumbent upon me to overcome said excuse. I get that. Anyway.....that's a big hurdle. I struggle with that one, honestly.

Another one I have had on my radar forever is a Big Dummy. There are other cargo bikes, but the Surly Big Dummy is just a bit different and fits my style best. I already have some attachments for one of these rigs. I would use one a lot, if I had one. I just need to get it done. Make it a priority. Doing that instead of "getting by" with my Xtra-cycled Schwinn mtb from the 80's which, truth be told, is woefully inadequate, would be a smart move.

So, there are two things I would get, that are maybe out of the norm, but would make a great addition to what I already have. I don't think I can swing both this Winter, but I think I am going to swing for one of them soon.

Life is too short.

Have a great weekend and get out and ride!! 


Ari said...

Jamie has a 16" big dummy that she does not ride anymore. That was a bike that she used to take our daughter to school with. I am planning on getting an xl and switching the parts on it. I highly suggest that bike. It truly rides like a dream. We have 2.5 hookworms on ours.l also believe tha a tandem is a great idea since it will expand distances one can ride with children. Go for it! Ari

Exhausted_Auk said...

Get a Dummy, GT! The more I ride mine, the more I like it. Now I'm taking a laptop home more often, it has more or less become my daily driver. It's very comfortable, and gives a great commuting workout.

Biggs said...

Look at a used MTB Cannondale tandem, we got ours for a song (relative) and it's new enough to be able to upgrade to disk brakes when the time comes. Lots of clearance for decent size tires. 26" isn't dead (yet)!

Andy said...

Yah! I'm in the same boat. I've always wished that Surly would build a tandem (a dumb tandem? hmmmm)

BB said...

Facebook PM sent your way regarding tandems...

Andy said...

OH NO! Wait I got it! The Surly tandem The TanDUMB!