Our Bike Commute
Log of thoughts and events
- saves money, gas and auto wear & tear.
- avoids time “wasted” sitting in
- controls weight without dieting.
- is one of our ways to contribute to the bicycle culture and
our planets environment.
- energizes the morning.
- relaxes the evening.
- makes cycling a part of my day.
- can free parts of our weekend.
- is easier on the environment than car commutes.
- improves our self-esteem.
- helps us train for our other events.
- is a lot fun.
- allows you to duck into the locker room to change into your
spare pants, on those days you do not ride, and replace the ones you
have carelessly spilled coffee on, just 10 minutes before your standup
Got to ride in today after a 2 week layoff. I was just getting over my cold when Honey got hers. Good ride though a little slow due to the layoff and the fact she is still coughing and tired.
We agreed on a small route change, that essentially replaces one long steep climb with several short steep climbs. Little easier to manage, and with good speed, you can really shorten the difficult grinding parts.
I already have my bag of stuff that includes a change of clothes in the locker room, but since it has been 2 weeks since I checked on it, I took a new full set of clothes in my pannier.
Getting to work, and not having clothes to wear once I get there is not something I want to have happen to me, hence the backup set.
The one thing I noticed good about doing that is that I am still so warm after riding and having a hot shower, that the cold clothes coming out of my pannier feel really nice.
First commute for this year didn't happen until end of April. We were waiting for more light, better weather, better health and better work schedules. Some of it is getting better at least.
Started out at about 47 degrees. Honey just loves her odometer with the thermometer on it. We remembered all the turns of our newer route, but there is still a section in Lake Oswego we need to agree on.
Its a very hilly section so we need to compare grade and length to agree on which way is best to go.
Will just have to keep riding.
March and now light enough to get to and from work before it gets too
dark. The weather has been unseasonably warm and dry all winter, the
snow level is very low and we just havent gotten much rain. In fact now
people are complaining that it is NOT raining. But it makes for great
biking weather. Our work schedules can be changed enough to allow us
the time to ride. Lisa warns it may mean working at home in the
evenings since she has so much to do, but the trade off is that we can
- We get going a little
late on the first morning. Lots of details to get done and equipment to
prepare for the first run at commuting for the year. But I have
working on the bikes and checking garthering equipment, so it doesnt
take too long. Its a pleasant morning and our spirits are lifted as we
listen to the geese honk while they fly in formation direclty above us
in the wetlands area. Riding the bike path along the river, watching
the rowers out on the river through the fog is almost cleansing.
- On the way home, on
March 8, after dropping down off the west hills to the river people are
pointing and staring at Mt. St. Helens. It has let off a huge blast of
steam, rising 12,000 into the air. I stop on the Sellwood view for a
front row seat and watch for about 10 minutes, it has been a bright a
clear day so the view are pretty good, but its 530 and starting to get
a little hazy, and after 20 minutes the show is really done. I meet up
with Lisa near the bridge and we return to that spot so I can show her,
but by then theres nothing to see and Im a bit dissapointed. We
on home, with the detour costing us a little time so by the time we get
home its getting dark.
First commute of the
year. Seems like nice weather this am, and should be good on the ride
home. Probably can wear the sandals.
I love them. Little colder than I anticipated, socks not the warmest,
and the toes get very cold. The warm shower makes them swell and sore.
Probably should wait a while to use them, or wear more protection.
One morning coming up
the hill in the cemetery, I ride up to a deer. We are both startled to
see each other, and he decides to run off to a safe distance where he
can watch me struggle up the hill. Nice immediate area for a deer but
don't think he/she should really be this close to town.
Several days later, I
come upon that same deer, this time up the top of the crest alongside
Barbur Blvd. Definitely not a good place for a deer, and running out of
wilderness up against I-5. Hope it finds the right way out.
Flying down barbur in
the morning in the area that I usually hit the low thirties,
approaching a stoplight in to Fred Meyer. A woman turns right, directly
in front of me, without signaling. I saw her slowing and anticipated
her turn just enough to hit the brakes and slide to a near stop, just
missing her bumper. Anticipation.......
Swallowed a large bug
this morning while gasping up the hill. That really wasn't pleasant.
On the ride home over
the rolling section of Barbur, another biker approaches. The drive
kicks in , and I decide I must hold him off. I work hard, its warm, I'm
hot, and he is gaining. We ride on, and it is evident that I am not
going to be able to hold him off through the hills, but I cannot give
up, so I do some quick shifting. Too quick in shifting both front and
back rings, and drop the chain. Must coast to a stop, and allow him to
pass. Perhaps not as humiliated defeat as being passed while puffing
and sweating, but a defeat just the same.
- Riding home, it
appears that my bottle isn't sealed since it is spraying me when I use
it. Oh no, its really a crack in the bottle.
Well its been a good bottle, but its time is over, goes in the trash
Rode all the way down
Barbur into downtown to see how that ride would be. Mostly downhill
from there, which was nice, tho tonite just a slight headwind. From
work its 9 miles to the Hawthorne bridge and I think it took about 41
minutes. Bike supporters there giving stuff out, got a nice yellow
reflecting band. The ride home makes an 18 mile, 1:20 ride, so really
only adding about 4 miles. Get to avoid the steep climb up through the
cemetery, and trades the Sellwood bridge and the difficult dirt track
access, with its narrow sidewalk used for both directions, to the
Hawthorne, that has wide sidewalks for each direction, and is very bike
friendly. Most of the additional miles are on the nice bike trail. Now,
will have to see what the trip up Barbur is like in the morning.
Sunday did 100 miles
at the Watermelon ride, Monday rode to work. Got to simulate biking two
days in a row. Hardest part may have been just having to get up at 530.
Well, I don't know, the hill was pretty hard too, the knees were a
little tired. but keeping a manageable pace, I get up and over with a
good heart rate anyway.
Sad day. A deer was
hit on I5 near terwilliger this am. Pretty sure its the deer I have
On my last ride home,
I note new signs at the Hawthorne bridge. Weight limit is 10,000
pounds. hmmm. turns out there's cracks.
Trucks and Tri-Met will not be allowed to cross it. Kind of good for
biking, but not really good for overall traffic management. Estimates
are 8 years to get a new bridge. Could be trouble. But I digress.
Took the Bike Fridays
out for a shakedown cruise, on Sunday for 35 miles.
Monday, July 5th, decide its a
good day to ride in, but take the Trek since I know what to expect with
it, for the commute.
July 5th is a holiday of sorts
since the 4th was on a Sunday.
There is almost no cars out on
the roads this morning. What a great ride, very stress free.