Entries Tagged as Routes & Rides
I did a shakedown tour on my Salsa Vaya to prepare it for a longer multiday tour in the fall. Anyway, what better way to see the region where I live than by bike?
My usual Saturday morning visit to a community garden is cut short, due to some lingering dark clouds on the horizon, and the anticipation of riding far enough out of London that day that I’d find somewhere comfortable to camp the night. My target was the Grand Union Canal, starting from where it meets the Thames River at Brentford.
Last March I was the event host for a trip from San Francisco to Point Reyes with the NorCal Bicycle Touring and Camping Meetup. We ended up getting six people together for the trip, all from San Francisco and Berkeley, except for one coming in from Sacramento. I had picked up a camping permit for Sky Camp at Recreation.gov about two months earlier. March is still the rainy season in San Francisco , so we felt lucky to have a weekend of sunny weather predicted.
Antsy to get out and tour one last time before the snow flew, we were looking for someplace within reasonable driving distance of home in Denver with dry weather and plenty of amenities. When Pete first suggested Utah, I was skeptical, thinking it was all about mountain biking. Sure looks that way when you Google "bicycling and Utah." But after some map-studying and conversations with bike/ped coordinators, we settled on the Salt Lake Valley, from Ogden to Provo.
Eight hours into our trip we were there, huddled under the picnic table's awning, watching flames gobble up the raindrops as they fell to Earth. Our fire cast its glow upon our two campsites which, by this time, had turned from a nice place to rest for the weekend into a quagmire whose mud pit was ready to suck the shoes off any unsuspecting camper. Fortunately for us, we were all barefoot.
I felt proud to let my nine-year-old daughter Jessica bike ahead of us as she pedaled onto Rue McGill towards the Westin Hotel in downtown Montreal. My pride is also a complement to the City of Montreal, which was a great bicycle destination for our family vacation. Sandi planned our family trip to Quebec. It had to be suitable for Jessica to bike and for Kate, who is seven, to ride on a trailer bike. For five days we were in Montreal. After that, we biked along Le Petit Trail du Nord rail trail in the Laurentian Mountains.
"What was I thinking? I must be insane! Why did I think I could do this? You don't do these kind of things! Other people do this, you freaking idiot!" These were just a few of the choice thoughts running through my head on June 29, 2013, as I left familiar cycling territory while embarking on my first attempted overnight bike trip. The plan was to ride from my home in Overland Park, Kansas, to Clinton State Park, which is just west of Lawrence, Kansas. I had estimated that the trip, which would take me through the communities of DeSoto and Eudora, would require approximately 50 miles, each way, of output from my untried (over this distance, anyway) human power plant. How, at the age of 46, had I arrived at this point in my life?