Monthly Archives: May 2007

Milwaukies 3rd bicycle workshop Sat. June 2nd.

Here’s a notice from Brett Kelver, TSP Bicycle Liaison:

There has been a lot of interest expressed by participants in the pedestrian-bicycle workshop about integrating the concept of bike boulevards into the Transportation System Plan (TSP) update. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time at the May 5th meeting to fully discuss the idea, so we are holding a third bicycle workshop to focus on this issue. Please plan to join us for this special public meeting scheduled for Saturday, June 2, 2007, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at Milwaukie City Hall (10722 SE Main Street).

If you are a staff/liaison, your hard copy packet is being mailed/distributed to you today. The electronic packet is available on our web site.

Here is what we hope to achieve at this meeting:

  • Develop a shared understanding of the bike boulevard concept.
  • Evaluate proposed bike boulevard routes and determine which should be on the TSP Bicycle Master Plan.
  • Discuss the priority of bike boulevard routes in the context of the proposed Bicycle Capital Projects list.

Through the TSP update process, the City has been able to hire a consultant specialist to assist with this special Bike Boulevard workshop. Rory Renfro of Alta Planning in Portland will be leading the discussion on June 2nd. Rory and Alta Planning bring considerable expertise in bicycle transportation to the table, and we are excited to have them involved to strengthen this portion of the TSP update.
In addition, there are several useful websites that have information and examples of bike boulevards. If you have not seen some of these already, take a look as part of your preparation for the conversation:

As always, please contact Brett Kelver if you have any questions. We will be aiming to have this discussion within a 2-hour timeframe, so please plan to arrive in time to start at 10:00 a.m. on the dot. See you on Saturday, June 2nd at Milwaukie City Hall!

Brett can be contacted at:

Why people really don’t switch to Linux

The question is why do people use pay for Microsoft products, when Linux, in most cases does the same better, for free.  The Ubuntu Linux operating system has proven to be easy to load, update and use, for both business and personal use. provides a great comparison of MicroSoft/Linux, with Gas/Hybrid vehicles.

So, it seems that the issues to this point have been

  •  Microsoft is the operating system that has been available on machines we buy
  •  Microsoft is presumed to be easier to load/use
  •  Microsoft has more applications

Times are changing.
Why people really don’t switch to Linux

Tallest Sitka Spruce….for now.

On memorial day, we re-visited the worlds largest/oldest Sitka Spruce, in Klootchy Creek Park on Highway 26, just east of aspruce.jpgSeaside/Cannon Beach junction. Fifty years ago, lightning struck the tree, causing a large wound that spirals around the tree about half way up. Then during a large windstorm in December of 2006, a large outer section was ripped off revealing severe rot that has weakened the tree. On Christmas Eve, we went to visit the tree shortly after that storm and the wood deck that encircled the tree had been closed off. Since that time there have been many options considered for saving the tree, from filling the interior with epoxy, to trimming, but since it is impossible to determine the full extent of the damage caused by the rot and fungus, it appears the final decision is to let nature take its course. With the inevitable conclusion, this tree will fall down. Now, the fencing around the perimeter is farther back. Although it doesn’t seem to me that the fencing is as far back as the tree is tall, so perhaps the thinking is that the entire tree wont fall, and that it will actually break in half. Either way, that tree is going to make some noise in the forest when it falls, no matter if someone is there to hear it, or not. Anywaaunder.jpgy, you can only spend so much time looking at one big tree, so we did some more looking around theahobbit.jpg Kloochy Creek Park. Nearby there is this interesting tree, that you can walk under, as you follow a path that winds out beside the large Sitka Spruce. Opposite the Spruce is this cool spot where an old log has rotted out, creating a Hobbitt Hole as Honey calls it, or perhaps providing a shelter for smaller creatures, as well as a natural home for typical oregon forest vegetation. Then in the front of the park there are these signs. The first one, a marble marker designating this area as Cloutrie Creek. The marker goes on to to describe how in 1899 Antoine Cloutrie, Seasides first postmaster, was leading a group of timber cruisers, and was found dead in this vicinity, possibly due toacloutrie.jpg ptomain poisining from a can of beans. Then the sign explains that the Cloutrie name has been misspelled and mispronounced to the extant that the creek named in his honor has become known by a misnomer. Finally, “Cloutrie Creek will become known by those reading this plaque and perhaps in years to come, the misspelling and the mispronunciation will disappear.” Ok, that is great. But then, why the bigger sign directly behind and above it that still pronounces the name of this area as Kloochy Creek?

I don’t get it.

Haystack Rock is a busy place

The Oregonian ran an article about the abuses suffered by the 16.5 million year old icon at Cannon Beach.

  • Haystack became part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge in 1968 and was granted status as a wilderness area in 1978.
  • In 1991, the state designated the rock and an area extending 300 yards around it as a marine garden.
  • Last year, interpretive guides stopped 509 visitors from violating the rules: 138 of those were trying to take some of the marine animals home, 232 were would-be rock climbers and 139 were harassing wildlife in and around the rock.
  • In 2005, guides talked to a total of 1,366 people who were doing something they weren’t supposed to, including 599 who were climbing in the refuge and 449 who were about to pocket an animal.

Here is an another example of our natural beauty and resources suffereing damage by our current societies lack of respect for our environment. Most Oregonians understand that and can act accordingly. But certainly not all of us.

We took a quick trip to Cannon Beach this weekend, and of course, our walk on the beach took us past the rock. There wereHaystackCrowd2_1.jpg about 60 people at swarming over the barnacle covered rocks at the base, during the low tide. The Haystack Rock Awareness Program was there with a truck and information kiosk. And volunteers wereHaystackCrowd3.jpg there to provide information, and I heard at least two volunteers politely ask people to not walk on the wildlife covered rocks. These people had walk directly past, by my count 6 signs directing them to “walk on sand or small rocks”. One guy had even brought his dog out to walk out in the tide-pools. These volunteers are doing fun but difficult job, for a very good cause. They just seem a little over-matched.

Extra Points Trivia Question: According to Lewis L MacArthur’s wonderful book “Oregon Geographic Names” how many Haystack Rocks are there in Oregon? (Three)

  1. At Cannon Beach in in Clatsop county
  2. Pacific City, a mile southwest of Cape Kiwanda, in Tillamook county
  3. In Wallowa county. At T 4N, R45E. Hey, its a remote area, and not really close to anything else.

Human Powered Challenge on Memorial weekend

If you don’t have plans out of town this weekend, and have some time, ride on over to Portland International Raceway to watch (or even participate in) the HPC………… Human Powered Challenge.
Yes, it’s time for the recumbent races again. Check out the Human Power Challenge website for more info and schedules. Races are alternated with the Electrathon America people. No bikes turned away. All welcome. Free to spectators.
Whatever your plans, hope you all have a great weekend.

Pioneer Century

The name has been changed back to the original Pioneer Century to reflect the history of the Champoeg, Canby and Molalla areas.
With two loops of 55 miles and 45 miles.

The 55 mile loop is in the Molalla, Canby and Scotts Mills area an will be the more challenging of the loops.

The 45 mile loop is in the more rural area of Champoeg and doesn’t appear to have a lot of challenging climbs.

The entire ride promises to be a bit more difficult than the old Spring Century.
Here are the elevations gains.

  • 45 mile route: 1327 feet
  • 55 mile route: 3087 feet

I have done this route 6 times

Spring, I mean, Pioneer Century is next.

The PWTC has changed the name of the Spring Century back to the original Pioneer Century to reflect the history of the Champoeg, Canby and Molalla areas.
They have changed the route to include two loops of 55 miles and 45 miles.
The 55 mile loop is in the Molalla, Canby and Scotts Mills area an will be the more challenging of the loops.
The 45 mile loop is in the more rural area of Champoeg and doesn’t appear to have a lot of challenging climbs.
The entire ride promises to be a bit more difficult than the old Spring Century.
Here are the elevations gains.

  • 45 mile route: 1327 feet
  • 55 mile route: 3087 feet

The ride is on our ride calendar.
I am guessing that even though there appears to be more climbing, that the course no longer climbs Bird Hill. It is a climb you really don’t know is coming until you have turned the corner. It includes a section of fairly steep pitch, and features a false summit. The spring was my first century, and with my old Schwinn super sport, I was able to summit with only one stop during the climb to insure that my heart would not explode. Many more miles later, and with a newer bike, I have been able to nail this climb in the years since. It is encouraging to look back and measure the improvements in your health and performance as your bike mile increase.

To me, one the the hardest things about this century is the two loop format. After you do 45-50 miles, then end up back at the car for one of the rest stops, the temptation to bag your earlier century plans and climb into the car is alluring. Especially if its cold or raining. This is the same formula used by the Watermelon ride. The afternoon headwinds in the valley flat-lands of that ride can make that mid ride bailout a nice option to have. On the other-hand its nice to be able to drop off your warmer clothes or otherwise regroup before heading out for the rest of the ride.

In any case, this has always been one of the best local rides. The route, support, markings, and rest stops are first class. Once again, we will be there!

And, this from Ann Morrow of PWTC

Continue reading

Big Words

Honey is a highly educated, and intelligent writer.
She is very gifted in languages, and just seems to know the meanings of words. Obscure English words tend to get used in sentences, in ways that seem so common and effortless. If I were to say them, you might think wow, how long have you been working on getting that into a sentence.

She likes big words, and I like lists and spreadsheets so I thought it might be fun to combine them. So as she says them, I will list them.

    Todays word:

  • ”Byzantine” – talking about a work procedure, something like “The whole process was so byzantine.”
  • “Honey, is anal-retentive hyphenated, or two words?” “Well, of course when used as a compound modifier…(yada..yada..yada..) “Um, thanks.”

My “Reach the Beach” century recap.

Saturday was the 2007 edition of “Reach the Beach“.
Sunday was my day of recovery, and shopping with Honey.
Monday is time to think back on the ride and make notes.

  • I chose the century route which started at Scholls Heights in Beaverton, and finished at Pacific City. The change to this new starting spot was ostensibly to reduce the route from 104 to 100, and to cut out a big climb at the start of the ride.
  • Parking at the school was non-existent. I needed to park in the residential neighborhood 7 blocks away. The area residents must have loved having their streets clogged by cars with bike racks all day long.
  • The changed route at the start substituted some busy highway with quiet forested roads, which was good. It also added much more climbing than in years past and more most everyone expected and seemed to slow peoples times.
  • The course didn’t feel as full of riders as in years past. Perhaps the threat of rains held out the late comers?
  • There are always a few bad riders on these rides. We came upon three slower riders riding abreast, taking the entire lane of a busy two lane road, which forced another line of riders lead by a tandem to veer into the oncoming lane to pass, just as a SUV approached and overtook them from behind, actually driving onto the opposite shoulder to pass what was now 4 riders abreast. That is wrong on so many levels.
  • The food was really pretty good, and better than years past. Except for their over reliance on apples as the fruit of choice and the fact that all the lunch lines were out of chili when it was our time to go through, the fuel support was ok.
  • At various times there were little Cliff Bars, bananas which are always popular, boiled eggs, which Honey hates but I think are useful, I saw one tub of licorice, which is like instant carbs, and always cookies. Any ride is a good ride if they have cookies.
  • Panera Bread” did a great job in volunteering to provide the breads and carbs for the riders. They had bread available at nearly all stops, and the sandwiches at Grand Ronde were perfect. Many thanks to “Panera Bread” and hope they can return again.
  • Why do they state that the course closes at 5:00 on rides of a 100 miles or more? There were still riders coming in when we left town at 7:00.
  • Moving up the spot of the last rest stop was good. That stop is most useful for those riders who are struggling and need one more rest, but the previous location, which is off the road during a downhill section, is too often passed by unseen by riders. This one was much more visible. Think riders enjoyed the guy with the bullhorn dispensing information and encouragement, although because of the cooler temps, he wasn’t getting any takers for his super soaker water gun.
  • There was a spot on the ride that required riders to stop and cross over a very fast and busy Highway 99 between Dayton and Amity, and it shocked me that the organizers provided no support or warnings at this point at all. Many thanks to the driver who stopped on the highway which allowed a large group of bikers to cross. We all gave the driver encouraging waves of thanks in the spirit of mutual livability.
  • The route is fairly well marked, and with a large number of riders usually not hard to follow, but in spots the signage was not always obvious, and easy to miss if you were not careful.
  • The finishing stage is nice and all, but charging a rider who has just ridden 100 miles $4.00 for a cup of bear just seems criminal.
  • Finished with 103 miles, a few sore spots and…..a plastic lei.

Another reason to commute by bike.

In a previous post, I started a list of reasons a person would want to commute by bike.
Today, I add another.  I have said before that one of my commuting strategies is to bring in a bag containing a clean set of clothes.  I like to plan to have an extra set here just to cover any unexpected issues and thus reducing the possibility I spend the day at the office in bike clothes.

Today, I did not ride.  But I did manage to spill coffee on my pants in a potentially embarrassing manner that I did not want to have to explain. Since I would be standing in a room of 14 people during a status meeting in about 10 minutes, I wanted a way out.  My extra set of jeans in the locker room was a perfect solution!

There are just so many good things about biking……

Mt. St. Helens – 27 years ago

Here is a photo of Mt. St. Helens prior to the big eruption that occured on May 18th, 1980, 27 years ago today. I remember when it looked like this.

A co-worker just stopped by to ask if I remember what I was doing on the day.
I sure do. Tucked away in my little apartment in SE Portland, on that dreary Sunday, my mom was the first to call to check up on me. Yea, I’m fine, No really can’t see it too well, it is a pretty gray day.
I do remember:

  • Waking up to find my white Plymouth Duster covered in ash.
  • People walking around town with dust masks.
  • Scooping up a 2 lb coffee can of ash from a large pile of ash that was swept up in a corner of the lot at the Lloyd Center.

My Quiz Results

I am 73% Addicted to Coffee<

I would have thought my coffee addiction results would have been really high given my answers. But it is certainly an expected and acceptable level since I am Danish, and that gives that certain immunity you need to be able to drink coffee at 9:00 at night and then be able to sleep peacefully afterwards.

51% Geek

I am not surprised that I only rank as a mediocre geek. I have kind of a geeky work day, but try to balance that out a little bit on my free time.   Though its possible I have an overly strong affection towards lists and spreadsheets.