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  1. #61
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    632

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    Good for you, Emily. Why drive when you can ride?

  2. #62
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,102
    We are in Portland, Maine and I must say there are as many craft breweries, coffee shops, and restaurants as in the better known Portland. I haven't been here in 12 years. Yesterday, we got here at noon and basically ate, walked and shopped, had coffee, wine, and beer. Today we went on a guided bike tour of the islands in Casco Bay. It was just us and the owner of the company, as most people wanting day tours don't want to 25 miles. We met the guy at the ferry, which was a 4 minute ride from our hotel. We were on the ferry for about an hour and 15 minutes, very pleasant and historical. There are tons of islands. We arrived at our first destination and rode about 10 miles. Just beautiful, with almost no cars. But some of the roads he took is on were dirt; the first was fine, but the next 2 were progressively rutted, sandy, and rocky, and I said no more. Fine for a hybrid, but not for my 25s. Then we rode to the one inn where we had lunch, overlooking the bay. On to a short 20 minute ferry ride, to an island connected to the mainland by a causeway. This was really cool. Then we rode back to Portland, on a combo of rural, urban, and bike path roads. The rural was fine, as was the urban, but the path sucked. Tight turns, clueless walkers, and all the things I hate about paths. From there, we rode back to our hotel, a different way, avoiding some cobbles and then promptly rewarded ourselves with gelato.
    Last edited by Crankin; 06-25-2016 at 01:33 PM.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  3. #63
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
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    6,636
    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Good for you, Emily. Why drive when you can ride?
    PERZACTLY.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  4. #64
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
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    Not sure where my post disappeared to, but I will try again (thankfully it was a short one):

    Crankin, that sounds like my kind of fun! My mother and step-dad talked for years about retiring to Portland (ME), but he had aging parents in NC in poor health, and after they both died, inertia had just set in, I think. Plus they had friends and lots to do in their community. So, the move to Maine never happened. I kinda wish they had done it as I would have loved to have visited them there!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  5. #65
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    Sounds lovely, Crankin. I do love my rural life and it really is me, but I do miss some of my urban cycling, now and then.

  6. #66
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    Interesting ride, today. Decided to do some exploring on roads I've never biked, so grabbed the map and made a route. When exploring new areas, I automatically opt for my Salsa Fargo. It's actually a drop bar mountain bike with MTB like gearing, but best of all, it runs on big 29er 2.2" tires. Believe it or not, it's only slightly slower than my standard road bikes in terms of average speed on pavement, but it's when we go off pavement that this bike just shines. Turns out, I needed it, today.


    The maps I have don't distinguish between paved and unpaved roads, so I never know for sure what I will encounter. Got half way through my 30 mile loop and, sure enough, when I made it to the intersection, the road I needed to complete the loop was gravel, but how far? What kind of shape? Off I went.

    Turns out it was 8 miles, sometimes gravel, but sometimes more sand and rather treacherous in spots. Even with the Fargo's big tires, I hit a lot of sand traps, causing me to fishtail like crazy. In some spots it was so bad, I walked the bike. The road was marked with ATB route signs and they meant it. Whew! To make things even more exciting, not a single home along the road for 8 miles. Just me and deep north woods on both sides. A fat bike would have been a better choice, but not too crazy about riding a fat bike 15 miles on pavement to get there.

    Would I do it, again? Yup. Would feel safer having some company, though.

  7. #67
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Would I do it, again? Yup. Would feel safer having some company, though.
    Yes, being alone in a desolate area like that would be intimidating to me. Glad you had fun (basically!) and were safe. I do know what you mean about the fishtailing and gravel...been having some issues with that ourselves lately. Just published a blog about a rail-trail we rode (or attempted to ride) a couple of weeks ago that ended up being a mess with deep gravel in spots and practically non-existent in spots. The website makes it look like this is such a premiere trail, but I beg to differ:

    http://travelingtwosome.weebly.com/t...-in-bolivar-mo

    Today's ride was a hilly monster. We started out by riding about 10 miles on a nice valley road, flat, to warm up. Then we headed north and east into the hills, and it was just one roller after another. I have never shifted in the front so much on a ride, from the big chain, to the granny, to the middle, back to the big, and on and on. I spent more time in the granny ring than I think I've ever done, and I bottomed out my 30x25 gear (riding my Trek Pilot) many, many times. "Sit and spin" is what they say, but this was more like "sit and grind". I stood as often as I could, but I tired frequently so had to do most of the longer climbs seated.

    I would have taken my Bike Friday with lower gears except that DH was doing maintenance on it, and the chain was not on it. I surely could have used those mountain gears because these hills sure felt like mountains to me!

    Ended up with 34 miles and just felt beat up. DH said it was as hard as the Crater Lake circle ride, which he had trained extensively for. Neither of us were prepared for this many hills, but at least he is an excellent climber. Not me -- I had to stop and rest several times partway up climbs just so I could get my breath and continue on. Temp was in the 80s, sunny, and fairly humid, which didn't help matters any.

    BUT, we did it. What doesn't kill us makes us stronger, right?!?!?

    Tomorrow we move on to Iowa, where I am happily anticipating some flatter terrain, though I expect the issue there will be the wind!
    Last edited by emily_in_nc; 06-26-2016 at 05:37 PM.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  8. #68
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    Sounds like a workout, but also a good day's work. Fortunately, I have several choices as to loops on local roads. One is mostly flat, but the others are rolling hills with a few flat stretches. I ride compact double chainrings on all my bikes, but I usually don't have to drop to the small ring except on the steepest hills, but those hills do bottom me out.

    Iowa is a lovely state with nice folks. The northeast is actually quite hilly as is the country adjacent to some of he rivers. Having lived in neighboring Nebraska much of my life, oh yeah, wind is a big factor. I'm sure you'll love it, though.

  9. #69
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    california
    Posts
    1,201
    Spent sat. night in los olivos and rode yesterday and today. figueroa mountain road yesterday and today just wandering (the joy of randomness) for 6 hours on the side roads in the santa ynez valley. It was HOT with both rides ending in the high 90’s but mornings were in the low 70’s. I planned this trip a while ago so hot yoga the last couple of weeks helped prepare me for the heat predicted.
    For quiet roads the s.y. valley is an excellent place to ride in…one of my favorites, especially figueroa mt.
    I saw just a few cars and probably 15+ bicyclists….. and the windblown oak trees are a beautiful feature in the valley floor landscape. Lots of places for water, my favorite being a small isolated chapel on foxen canyon rd. for shade to stretch, relax and eat in and a bottle filling refrigerated cooling water fountain for bicyclists. A good weekend of riding……












    Last edited by rebeccaC; 06-27-2016 at 08:47 PM.
    ‘The negative feelings we all have can be addictive…just as the positive…it’s up to
    us to decide which ones we want to choose and feed”… Pema Chodron

  10. #70
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Taylor, MI
    Posts
    220
    Read your blog on this trail. My mom lives in Springfield, Mo at the southern end of the Frisco Highline. I've always wanted to try it when we are visiting. Based on your info, I think I'll take a pass.

    P2
    2011 Trek Madone 5.2 WSD - Ruby 155
    2009 Trek 2.1 WSD - Ruby 155
    2013 Giant TCX W - Jett 155
    2010 Specialized Amira Comp - Romin 155

  11. #71
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    What wonderful country! I do miss those wide open vistas. Only get those, up here, when I bicycle past a potato farm.

  12. #72
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,102
    Did a very tiny 30 minute ride this morning, not early enough, as the humidity is finally arriving and it's hot, too. Glad I went, but glad I didn't plan a day long ride. I am off from work since my office moved over the weekend. Spent a couple of hours setting up/unpacking my stuff over there, and now going to head to the farm, get my produce, and generally recover from a 3 day vacation where there was plenty of eating and drinking, along with a day on the bike and tons of walking.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  13. #73
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    Only 63 at midday, here, with light rain and, worst of all, a 25 mph + north wind, so grabbed the bike jacket, put on the leggings and headed out. Called it quits after 5 miles and headed back home. The cool temps and even the showers I could take, but after fighting that kind of wind, yesterday, just wasn't in me to fight it, again, today. Put in 20 more miles on the bike trainer, indoors, where it was nice and warm, NO wind and called it good. Wimpy old me.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 06-27-2016 at 11:32 AM.

  14. #74
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
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    6,636
    Quote Originally Posted by pinsonp2 View Post
    Read your blog on this trail. My mom lives in Springfield, Mo at the southern end of the Frisco Highline. I've always wanted to try it when we are visiting. Based on your info, I think I'll take a pass.

    P2
    From other reviews I've read, the southern end near Springfield is in much better shape. I believe it's paved, at least for awhile. So I wouldn't rule out riding it, since you have family there. I just wouldn't make a special trip!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  15. #75
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Iowa is a lovely state with nice folks. The northeast is actually quite hilly as is the country adjacent to some of he rivers. Having lived in neighboring Nebraska much of my life, oh yeah, wind is a big factor. I'm sure you'll love it, though.
    We are here, and it is HILLY. I was shocked! I guess I do recall reading reports of RAGBRAI that Iowa isn't flat, but I had temporary amnesia. We are going for our first ride today, so we'll see how it goes. The state park we're staying in, Prairie Rose, is quite hilly, as were the roads to get here. So, it's probably a good thing that I did that tough ride in Missouri a couple days ago.

    It sounds like you are a lot stronger than me on hills -- but then again, I suppose most cyclists are. I've been riding since 2003 and have never been good on climbs, though the more I ride 'em, the better I get, of course.

    I think I'll ride my Bike Friday today today for the gears!
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

 

 

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