Saturday, February 23, 2019

Minus Ten Review 2009-10

Those are not reproductions of Repack flyers. Those are the real deal there.
Ten years ago this week on the blog I was busy recapping my Frostbike 2009 adventures. This was the first Frostbike that I did strictly as "media" for "Twenty Nine Inches". I had been up to the show for '03-'08 as well, but I was a gatherer of info for the shop those years as much as I was doing things for this blog and maybe my earliest offerings on other websites.

In fact, this was my second year flying solo to Frostbike. Previous to this I was going up for one day only with my boss from the shop where I work. But this was really the beginning of the years of crazy Frostbike hi-jinx, of the sort I mentioned on here yesterday, and in this case, the first visit to Mike's Bikes, a former shop in Northfield, Minnesota.

Mike's was a treasure of old stuff and memorabilia. Mike, the owner, was a contemporary of Gary Fisher, Joe Breeze, and Charlie Kelly. Mike worked in the San Francisco area at a shop, and sometimes did work for these MTB luminaries. Mike also attended many of the early MTB rides and organized events. He had the posters and flyers to prove it, along with some historical Polaroids and film camera shots depicting different scenes of the day. Being a fan of history, and of course, bicycles, I was taken with this immediately.

Now there was more than just nostalgia. There were new friends, beer, pizza, and bike riding. Yes......bike riding indoors. Things got crazy and we were careening down the long, narrow aisles of the shop amongst racks of bikes, accessories, and then through the mechanics bay, a hard left to the back room, then a hard left through a propped open glass door, down a ramp, through a narrow hallway, another door, and then a hard left to the store proper again. Over and over, we made laps, switching out bikes along the way, and having a hoot.

Making my way into the mechanic's bay.
Inserted into the Frostbike ramblings that week was a small post about a new site for Trans Iowa History. Originally this site was going to be the landing page for "Gravel Grinder News", but I ended up liking Blogger better for that and swapped things over to the Wordpress blog for the Trans Iowa stuff. That site was also considered as a new home for this blog when I set up the address, so it is kind of a kludge when it comes to an URL address. Anyway.....

I felt the need to get the history site going since there had been four Trans Iowas by that point in 2009 and I realized that if I didn't start documenting things I was going to lose stuff and forget a lot more. In fact, T.I.v1 documents were nearly lost and it was only through trying to get things correct for the history that I found the stuff in the end. By the way, I have a folder, or notebook with all the documents as they were put away after each running of a Trans Iowa. So, there are scraps of notes, maps, dead ends for routes, and more secret stuff I still haven't decided to release at this point.

I also realized that stuff that had appeared on Jeff's blog, (I wasn't blogging yet in late 2004), may end up getting lost, so I copy and pasted that to a hard drive and I do have that stuff as well. I probably should print it to paper at some point, anyway.....

So, I had been working on all of this back in 2008, with "Gravel Grinder News" getting formatted, and the History site for Trans Iowa being done simultaneously after my kids were put down for bed at night. Between that, my day job, and doing the 29"er site, it ended up taking months to get to the point where T.I.v4 had finally been added and I could release the site to public view.

Upon publishing the site, a few Trans Iowa nut jobs took a look, but this site went largely unnoticed for years, and honestly it still isn't looked at very often. On a good day it gets five views and can go for three days at a crack with no activity. But, it is there if you care to look, and since I like history, I am happy that it is there.

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