Saturday, May 26, 2007

Memorial Day

"Here rests in honored glory, an American Soldier, known but to God."

Hi All,

I thought I would take a moment this weekend and take note of Memorial Day. Here in our country, some of our holidays get wrapped up in quick vacations and endless sales, rather than acknowledging the essence of the holiday itself. In contrast, in Canberra, Australia, over 30,000 citizens attended the annual ANZAC Remembrance Day sunrise service.
So, take a moment and put down your coupon ads, your BBQ fixins and remember the actual purpose of Memorial Day, which is to honor all of those who gave their lives in service to our country. Without further editorial, I invite you to enjoy some of my photographs from last month’s visit to Arlington National Cemetery where 290,000 of our honored dead lay in peace. Kathy and I also observed the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This guard is in place 24/365, and rotates every 30 minutes around the clock. This was my first visit to Arlington, and it truly was a sobering experience. One could not help but walk in peace and contemplation at the acres and acres of crosses, each with their own history and family left behind.

Lastly, please enjoy a few photographs from this week’s training rides. The first ride, ended with me cold and wet after coming off a big hill in a hail/sleet shower. The second ride the next day was a glorious cold and sunny day on Antelope Island. I have been mixing hills and distance in preparation for June 9th’s brevet around Bryce Canyon.
The oncoming storm, guess I am getting wet!

The reward of a lovely day after the storm.

The view to the east, towards Davis County
See you down the road,

Monday, May 21, 2007

Trucks, Bikes, and Planes

Honest, This is straight off the camera!

Hi all,
Well, I have been away from blogging for almost three weeks. Mostly, I have been shuttling back and forth to Tucson attending to family issues. Last week’s trip to Tucson brought the joy of driving a 16-foot truck 900+ miles helping Amy and Jon move to their new home in Tucson. We had an enjoyable time riding down the open road; our caravan of the truck and two cars. Want to get away from it all? Try Highway 95 south out of Las Vegas. It took 215 songs in my Ipod to get to Tucson!

Cruisin Down '95

Of course, on the last day on the way to the airport, I made an obligatory stop at Ajo Bikes. They have a fine selection of ‘Bents, and I almost never fail to make a stop and try out something new.
This trip’s test ride was a Rans V26. What a different feel from the Little Red Barcroft! Big and long, it was a very nice riding bike, but the body position was so different from my current ride. I can see why the bike is built for the long haul. The bike I rode also had “chopper” bars set way up high. Not functional in that position, but a lot of fun in any case.

A Big Bike! Check out those Choppers!
I also rode a little Breezer folder. Well used, and on the cheap, it was a new experience, too. I mentioned to the employee that it was kinda twitchy; he responds: “Oh yes, I forgot to tell you, the cranks are bent.” Oh. That explains it!

While I was browsing, I “picked out” a few used models to bring home with me. (Of course, I didn’t spend any money, but it was fun anyways) I picked out a Cycle Genius Sparrow for Kathy; a Rans CF Cruz for me; and a nice CatTrike Trike for Jon. Now, if they will all fit in my carryon luggage, I am all set!

A cute Cycle Genius for Kathy
A nice view from the ramp at TUS
And finally, this morning, I mailed my registration for the Bryce Canyon 200 Km Brevet on June 9th. June will be a heavy month of long rides, with the MS-150 miler on June 23/24. If you would like to sponsor me on the MS-150 and help with the fight against MS, please drop me a note here and I will get in touch with you.

See you down the road,

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Adding Parts

Hi All,
Before we get talking about bike stuff, please enjoy the lead photograph. The image is of the painting in the dome of the U.S. Capital. A lovely painting of George Washington surrounded by 13 maidens, representing the 13 original colonies and two other maidens depicting peace and justice or somesuch. I can’t remember, and with my hearing issues, couldn’t hear everything the guide said anyways! But, the guide was kind enough to let me stand at the center point and take the picture. It truly was an amazing piece of art.

Now, on to cycling issues; this past week, I made some minor changes to the Little Red Bike. I installed the new riser that I brought home from my visit to Barcroft Bicycles. The previous riser was a poor design that used two hex bolts that were screwed into a mutual sleeve. The bolts worked loose after about 200 miles of riding. Then, the riser would have some sideways flop and gave the bike a slightly looser feel at speeds above 30 mph. The new riser uses a quick release lever to tighten the riser to the handlebar stem. There is no flop, it is tight all the time and the bike just feels more stable when I am going fast. Plus, I don’t have to retighten it every 200 miles.

The new riser.

Stronger derailleur clamp
I also installed some new blinkies; one of which I liked because its mount has a dual pivot, and I can adjust the angle of the light to face towards passing cars. I replaced the Minoura light mount with a Terra Cycle mount, which is much more streamlined and lower and to the front of the bike.

The new Terra Cycle light mount.
And finally, I would like to send out a compliment to a small company. Princeton Tech. I purchased a Princeton Tech EOS Bike helmet light for my commuting and brevet riding. I was happily unwrapping the light and accidentally dropped the small helmet bracket. When I moved my rolling chair to reach it, I rolled the wheel over it and broke it! Bad words and stomping then followed. After I calmed down I called the company’s service desk and explained my stupidity. They were very nice, and offered to send me a replacement bracket free of charge. In fact he mailed it that morning. Wow! A real company that is nice to their customers. They gained a customer for life in me. Thanks guys! By the way, the light is great! I saw a review over at Alan’s Blog last year, and had wanted to add the light to my equipment list. I might even buy another!

See you all down the road.