photos of an empty cow palace on the day before ALC10:
photos of an empty cow palace on the day before ALC10:
I put a michelin speedium 2 tire onto my rear wheel last summer. I found out after a few miles that these guys look like they wear out quickly. They feel soft and tacky, though, which is kind of nice. I don’t recall getting a lot of flats on this tire throughout its lifespan. here’s what the tire looked like after about 2500 miles (and after AIDS LifeCycle):
2500 miles doesn’t seem like a lot for a tire, but I didn’t have high expectations – I purchased a pair on sale for $12 each.
I still had the other new tire, so out of curiosity, I weighed the two:
I know there can be manufacturing variations in tire weight, but it’s pretty neat to quantitatively measure about 20 grams in tire wear. I liked the tires. I’ll probably purchase another pair of michelins next.
Here are some photos from the the AIDS LifeCycle NorCal day on the ride:
Gathering in Mike’s Bike’s in San Rafael prior to the start
I took this picture for two reasons. 1) I thought it’d look cool with the guy kneeling and talking on the phone. It didn’t turn out as cool as I’d thought. 2) Old school Trek Y-foil road frame.
Riders getting ready to roll out
1st rest stop: Nicasio Valley Cheese Company
Not a good bike day for me though I felt fine riding. Later in the day my rear wheel got pretty messed up from a pothole-filled descent. Eventually the rim so out of true that it was rubbing against the brake pads. I had to stop and do a little work on the side of the road.
Lunch at the park. Turkey + havarti sandwiches from Boudin.
We did about 65 miles in all. I felt a bit tired towards the end was was climbing well otherwise. It was fun to see a bunch of other riders out (~400 total?) and to see all of the volunteers for the event.
Here’s a little update on the ALC cards:
I bought a bunch of paper from dick blick in berkeley. I forgot what type I got now, but I got the heaviest printmaking paper that seemed reasonably priced. Registration can be a bit tough with the quickutz L letterpress. It didn’t help that the cards aren’t exactly uniform in size – that’s a lesson learned for next time. If the cards were uniform in size, I would have been able to use the edges to register the print.
The Boxcar plates continue to be nice. I traced this outline of the state of California in Illustrator and added a little SF to LA route.
I took Boxcar’s advice and got a soft rubber brayer. I bought a 6″ speedball one from dick blick. I probably needed a slightly larger one for what I’m doing, but the soft rubber makes a huge difference in the uniformity of the ink application. A wider brayer would have helped even more because I wouldn’t have had to ink the plate in multiple passes.
Here’s the front side of a card that’s registered pretty well. Next time I’ll try to make better use of the cross-hatching – I think the hatching is one of the fun things about these types of designs.
An outline of the state of California on the back side of the card
I used one of the elum thank you plates and added my own bicycle icon.
I find it absolutely hilarious (and awesome) that the 1 cent USPS stamps are of a tiffany lamp.
Last weekend, (pardon my 1-week delay) the second part of a back to back ride was up and down Mt. Diablo. My legs were quite tired from the day before which made it pretty hard to spin the legs around with any sort of force. Looking back, it was a good reminder that I have zero 2nd day endurance and will have to build that up in order to survive 7 days back to back.
It was a pretty day though.
We finally reached the saddle point where North Gate and South Gate road meet. We saw a few AIDS LifeCycle riders who were part of the organized ALC ride. It was pretty inspiring to see people tackle that climb for the first time. I felt better after a little bit of rest and some calories, but things got tough again as soon as we started climbing. My annoyance at my body kind of shifted towards anger as I decided that I’d push harder up the second half of the climb to get it over with. It felt like a race. I was yelling and cussing at my legs with every pedal stroke to get them to spin. At one point, I looked to my right (above photo) and thought to myself, “Are you freaking kidding me?”. Pretty steep pitch. This was my third time climbing Mt. Diablo and I didn’t remember it being so hard the last two times. Maybe I was in better shape, or maybe my body just needed a lot more rest.
We finally made it to the top. It was a pretty day and was popular for motorists as well as cyclists. At the summit, there was a line of cars about 6 or 7 deep waiting to find a parking space. As I sat catching my breath, I even saw a bit of an argument when one person took a parking space that someone else had been waiting for. My girlfriend got us a snickers bar for a celebratory snack since they ran out of ice cream.
It was a bit chilly descending from the summit back to the saddle point but I didn’t mind since I enjoy the descents. My fingers were a little tired from braking though. We met these two guys riding a greenspeed recumbent tricycle. Looked like a pretty sweet setup. They said it was hard to climb but the descents were fast as anything. I was feeling much better at this point since, of course, the hard part was over.
We took off and headed all the way down to the base. I waited for a bit to rest, took a picture or two and then WHOOSH, saw the recumbent trike go flying by with one of the guys waving. I’d love to try one sometime.
We rode back to Walnut creek BART and called it a day. 49 miles in all.
I heard news yesterday of a cyclist killed in a hit and run by a Ford F-150 while riding a 600k in Southern California. Really sad story and the guy was a friend of friends. It’s sometimes hard to work out in your head that despite having the strength to be able to ride 375 miles in one go, our bodies and lives can be so fragile – and that one person’s mistake or impairment can destroy all of that in a matter of seconds.