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  1. #31
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    Feb 2005
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    Concord, MA
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    Emily, your pictures with the hills look like the San Juan Islands in WA. Lots of ups and downs!
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

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  2. #32
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    Jul 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    Emily, your pictures with the hills look like the San Juan Islands in WA. Lots of ups and downs!
    It was a roller coaster for sure! I was glad I rode my Bike Friday as I needed every gear!

    NWG, your MTB is lovely. I am partial to a blue bike myself.
    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

  3. #33
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    Thank you. I am partial to blue on my bikes. Have two others that are blue.

  4. #34
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    Jul 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Thank you. I am partial to blue on my bikes. Have two others that are blue.
    Two out of my three bikes are blue. :-)

    Today's ride was a windy but fun one. We had a stiff headwind all the way to town, where DH needed to buy a tool. Slow going, but the return trip was so much fun. We barely had to pedal! 22 miles that took us an hour to get there and 48 minutes to return!
    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. #35
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    632
    Bit windy here, too. I always try to have the wind at may back or at least quartering at my back for the ride back home. Nice to have that extra boost when I'm tired.

    The big country music festival is over, but it has been a good week working the gravel and sand roads in the other direction. Did a lot of experimenting with the different bikes as to tire sizes to see how they managed some pretty challenging soft sand conditions. Not surprisingly, the bigger and the wider the tire, the easier it was to negotiate the soft stuff. By the time I got to my 29er plus with its 3" wide tires, I could relax and ignore all the bad spots that caused problems with the narrower/smaller wheeled bikes. Even went out of my way to hit the bad spots. Way fun.

    Still, on the hard packed gravel, my Salsa Warbird with its 700x35 tires just flies. In the soft stuff, kind of spooky to ride, though. Couldn't relax for a second. Would get sudden and unpredictable spin outs and way too much fishtailing to make for anything but a nerve racking ride. Oh, well, different bikes for different terrain.

    Trek Stashe, 29er plus with 3" tires. A hoot to ride.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 07-11-2016 at 09:11 PM.

  6. #36
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    Jul 2003
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    I bet that Trek is a blast on gravel!

    We rode quite a few unpaved forest service roads down south this spring, and even with our MTBs, there were squirrely areas. And with our Bike Fridays (1.35" tires), they were downright scary in spots, as you experienced with your Salsa. They do great on the hard-packed gravel, like the Katy Trail, but when the surface gets loose...no.
    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

  7. #37
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    632
    I do find it interesting to ride on all these various off-pavement surfaces, though. Riding conditions on our gravel and sand roads change almost by the day, depending on how much rain we've had (that affects surface hardness), how much traffic has been on the road (those deep ruts left by vehicles are real bike traps) and, of course, any kind of road maintenance (freshly laid gravel and so on). Add to that the fact that you are riding in some really remote backcountry areas and, well, going back to pavement is kind of tame. Biking these back roads really is a great way to get to know the country. It can be a workout, though. Pedaling though 8 miles of wet sand isn't for wimps.

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
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    I rode to work yesterday, first time to new office. Went a totally stress free route, so no sitting in traffic, ect. A grand total of 2.8 miles. I did not leave until 6:45 PM, so went home the normal way. Of course, right when I got to the train tracks, a train came and I had to stop, but it was quick, as it's on the way to the station.
    A total of 5.3 miles.
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    2011 Guru Praemio
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  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    I do find it interesting to ride on all these various off-pavement surfaces, though. Riding conditions on our gravel and sand roads change almost by the day, depending on how much rain we've had (that affects surface hardness), how much traffic has been on the road (those deep ruts left by vehicles are real bike traps) and, of course, any kind of road maintenance (freshly laid gravel and so on). Add to that the fact that you are riding in some really remote backcountry areas and, well, going back to pavement is kind of tame. Biking these back roads really is a great way to get to know the country. It can be a workout, though. Pedaling though 8 miles of wet sand isn't for wimps.
    That's so true! When we lived in Belize, we rode beach cruisers on packed sandy roads that periodically had huge puddles, or got plowed, or rock put down, etc. So you never really knew what to expect on a day to day basis. It was always an adventure, and I am sure riding the back roads with regularity would be the same! Even on the forest service roads we rode in the national forests down in the southern US states, from one mile to another they could vary incredibly, from nicely packed to deep, scary gravel, to potholes and ruts and washboarding...a little of this, a little of that!
    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

  10. #40
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    Jul 2003
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    Today the wind was down a bit, though it was still breezy. We rode to town to two grocery stores and stocked up on our Bike Fridays. Fortunately, we had more tailwind on the way back again, which helped, since that's when we were loaded down.

    Funny comment from an older gentleman behind me in the checkout line: "Are you riding a motorcycle?" I had run in with my helmet on for only one item the first store didn't have, so I didn't bother taking it off.

    Went over 1400 miles on the year today, by a tenth. 21.1 miles today.
    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

  11. #41
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    632
    Good for you, Emily. I've always enjoyed running errands on a bike. Just seems so much less stressful than using a car. Also helps to keep me from doing too much impulse buying for lack of not having enough room i the panniers.

  12. #42
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
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    Returned to a real deal, gnarly MTB singletrack that has defeated me twice, earlier this spring. Lots of hairpin turns, roots, rocks, but mostly killer and abrupt changes in elevation that, previously, had me stalling out. Maybe it's because of all my riding over this summer, but today I completed the easier 2.2 mile loop on my Trek 29er + Stashe. Yippee! A girl can do. Not much for miles, but what a workout. (Whoa! This is getting addicting.)

  13. #43
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
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    Good work, north woods. That is the stuff that made me sell my very nice mountain bike. But, I can use the excuse it was too big for me!
    Went out at 6 AM with DH, as it's going to be about 92 and humid today. Said no to the group ride. We rode about 28 miles, into Harvard and Bolton, doing one of my favorite local climbs, and through our old neighborhood (not the one we just moved from, but the one where we lived before and where I started riding). So much quieter with cars just 5 miles west of here. Beautiful morning, too. On the way back, we stopped for coffee in west Acton and sat outside at the café for about 40 minutes. Then, it was just about 5 miles home. I really needed the coffee; went out after eating a small bowl of quinoa flakes, almond milk, and half a banana, but was afraid to drink coffee so close to a ride. Mistake. I felt really sluggish. It's OK to do it when I am riding 10-12 miles, but not for more.
    It's already 88 degrees. Yuck.
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    2011 Guru Praemio
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  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Returned to a real deal, gnarly MTB singletrack that has defeated me twice, earlier this spring. Lots of hairpin turns, roots, rocks, but mostly killer and abrupt changes in elevation that, previously, had me stalling out. Maybe it's because of all my riding over this summer, but today I completed the easier 2.2 mile loop on my Trek 29er + Stashe. Yippee! A girl can do. Not much for miles, but what a workout. (Whoa! This is getting addicting.)
    I bow down in admiration to you! I am not brave enough to do the gnarly stuff. When I first started MTBing around 10 years ago, I was very gung ho, but after taking a few painful falls, I backed off. It's just not fun being injured. I think if I had taken a skills clinic (or three) and really put the time into improving, I probably could have learned to do it, but I was too much a roadie at heart, and then with our various lifestyle changes (living in Belize and Mexico, and road-tripping across the US), I haven't gotten to ride the MTB much at all in the past few years. So I am content with beginner stuff and have no desire to do anything difficult.

    As for errands, yes indeed. Of course, that's mostly our only choice right now, as we live in a 32' motorhome, so unless we can stop somewhere on the way between campgrounds, we are limited to bicycles for daily errands. We don't have a towed vehicle, by choice, at the moment. We are trying to see if we can get away without the added expense, insurance, and making our rig that much longer. Bikes have served us well so far. And you're right, panniers do limit the impulse buys. We have to carefully eyeball everything we're buying to ensure we can get it all back with us. So far, so good!
    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. #45
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    632
    You know, I have always been eager to find any excuse to go bike instead of a car. Oh, I use cars, but to be honest, not a car person at all. I think in past lives, I was a horse person and now the bicycle is my modern day version of a horse or something.

    Went back and worked the MTB single track routes. Used my fat bike, today. Wow! Just rolls over the rough stuff with ease. Getting very comfortable, now, with what the signs call the easier routes (easier, but definitely not easy) and even took a shot at the harder routes. I soon discovered that the harder routes are labeled harder because of the some of the abrupt, very severe changes in elevation. Just no way I could handle those sudden uphill grades, mostly because you have no chance to build up speed to prepare for them. Twist around a corner and there they are. Stalled out on the bad ones - nowhere near enough strength. On the other hand, actually did well on the more level, but challenging twisty, turny, rocky and rutty stuff. Even managed a couple short bunny hops. Crazy me.

    Unfortunately, these trails are a 4 plus mile ride on pavement to get there. Now, 4 miles on pavement is a breeze with just about any bike, even standard mountain bikes, but not a fat bike. The noise those monster 4.8" tires make on pavement will drive you nuts (even road on the shoulder to get a little peace and quiet) and trust me, pushing those monster tires ain't no picnic. They are heavy. Did about 10 miles of trails and about another 10 miles of pavement, total to get there.

    Tonight, I feel like I rode at least 50 miles on a road bike. My whole body feels like it's been worked, hard. Mountain biking really is more of an entire body kind of riding compared to road biking. Your whole body tends to get beat up with rough single track, what with all the bumps and the need to wrestle the bike around sharp turns and/or all the sudden shifts in balance. Very different kind of riding compared to road bikes. No wonder the guys at our local shop love it so much. Very macho kind of riding. Still, absolutely love it, myself, now, and having the solitude of the deep woods makes it very special. My monthly mile total will take a hit with all this maintain biking, but I'll be in at least as good a shape, maybe even better, because of it.

    Did I mention that they actually groom some of these trails in the winter for fat bike riding in the snow? I am truly blessed with both road bike riding and MTB riding, right out my front door. Life is good in my north woods.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 07-13-2016 at 05:42 PM.

 

 

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