• 02-19-2015
    blockphi
    A decent ride this AM. This afternoon might be fun - may ride over to watch my daughter ski at the State meet. If I do, it will end up making my afternoon a 21 mile ride. Always fun, if not a little time consuming.
  • 02-19-2015
    CommuterBoy
    Weird one today... I was on my longer route, which includes a short section on a rural highway... 2 lanes, but busier than a typical rural road. I was approaching my left turn off of this highway, which has a big left turn lane, so I need to cross the lane of traffic going my way, get into that turn lane, and turn left when there's a gap in traffic... I can see ahead maybe 1/2 mile at this point, so it's an easy left turn.

    I glanced over my shoulder, and there was a car coming up behind me, but no one behind them...no other cars anywhere...so I sit up and wait for this car to pass before I cross the lane into the turn lane. Turns out this car was going to turn left too, so they are slowing, and they pass me just before easing left into the turn lane. I drift across the lane and into the turn lane behind them, no problem, no drama... well oiled machine so far... they get up to the turn, and....wait for it.... they just stop. This is a highway...not a stop sign in sight (well, there are on the side roads T-ing into the highway). What possesses someone to stop in this situation is baffling. No cars coming the other way, no one behind (except the obvious problem, the crazy cyclist). I literally almost rear-ended this SUV, because who expects that? I stopped inches behind their bumper, unclipped the right foot and put it down, and extended the arms in the universal "...the heck are you doing?" gesture, while looking through the black tinted rear window in the direction of the rear-view mirror...and I held that pose for a good 6 seconds before they inexplicably got on the gas and made the turn. What in the world.
  • 02-19-2015
    newfangled
    Rain yesterday and again today. February has been nicely snowy, but we're really close to having more rain than snow this winter.
  • 02-19-2015
    Texan-n-Fla
    Record lows tomorrow morning. Think I'll trade the wife some coffee and donuts for a ride in. I'm super excited for the baby to show up.
  • 02-19-2015
    woodway
    Probably had to finish typing and hit send on their text CB....
  • 02-19-2015
    Rustedthrough
    First commute in the negative degrees. Fortunately the wind held off, and so did most of the crazy drivers.
  • 02-19-2015
    NDD
    Well how did ya like it?
  • 02-19-2015
    Rustedthrough
    A lot like commuting at 10f, with less warm toes and firmer car snot. Spring can come anyday now.
  • 02-20-2015
    Texan-n-Fla
    1 Attachment(s)
    How was your commute today?
    Attachment 966044
    I'm trading the wife some coffee and donuts (she's preggers, so it works) for a ride into work. I don't have the proper equipment to handle such temps. It'll be back up in the 50's when I get off work, so I'll be happy to ride then.
  • 02-20-2015
    AlexCuse
    Re: How was your commute today?
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TenSpeed View Post
    Thanks, yep got the hands finally figured out. North Face outer gloves, Nike running style gloves as a liner, and the air activated hand warmer packets is the perfect combo for these cold temps.

    Hope you get healed up quickly.

    Awesome! Hate when the body is otherwise willing but a seemingly small thing keeps you off the bike.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    Sorry to hear about your arm, AlexCuse. If you haven't tried it yet, one thing that has helped me is switching the left and right mouse buttons (in your control panel settings) and using it with the opposite hand for a while.

    This is a great idea thanks.

    I'm hopeful it will resolve quickly. The "spring classic" rides are coming up and they're my favorite.
  • 02-20-2015
    blockphi
    A good ride in this AM. Yesterday's ride to the XC Ski race and then back to the bus was interesting. Because of the thaw and freeze everything is icy icy. Didn't go down at all, but there were some sphincter tightening moments. Also had a bit of a run in with a car. One short section where I was on road and a jacked up Jeep passed me giving only a foot of space or so. Didn't rev his engine or anything. Just didn't get over to pass even though there was no oncoming traffic. I figure he though there was enough room. Don't know. At the time I flipped him the bird, which I feel bad about, but on the other hand, the car that passed me right before he did gave ample berth, so it's not like he shouldn't have had a sense of how close he was.
  • 02-23-2015
    Texan-n-Fla
    Great ride this morning. Temps are perfect, but we had a lot of fog roll in, which drenched my clothes and I guess accumulated on my chain and stripped the lube. About halfway through I started hearing squeaking, and I just applied some last week, less than 100 miles ago. I keep an extra bottle in my locker, so it's no biggie. I'd simply never encountered this problem before. Yeah, sure, when it's a heavy downpour and I'm going through puddles and the like, but not just from some wet air. I forgot to charge my headlight over the weekend, so my red light came on about halfway through. Put the hammer down and made it to the office right about the time it switched itself to power saving flash mode.
  • 02-23-2015
    blockphi
    A crappy one this morning. 35F and rain. In February. In Alaska. This is so not right. Just about went down a couple of times on the ice in town. Over the weekend I was able to get a long-ish ride in on Saturday - 33 miles of road. The idea was to ride trail, but every trail option I found was so covered in ice that it would've been suicide, so... Road miles aren't so bad sometimes - had a lot on my mind, so riding that way helped me to zone out a bit and try to work through them. Ended up riding a 28 mile day on both Thursday and Friday so I could watch my daughter in her state ski races. I can tell I am in winter shape right now. The distances were easy enough, but three days of bigger miles than normal has my legs feeling it today.
  • 02-23-2015
    jeffscott
    got up late to a flat (pinch I know the curb)....changed the tube, then the old M&G bead blew out with a bang....

    Changed the wheel and moved the new 10 speed cassette to the summer slick wheel.

    Then rode in.

    Third M&G to fail at the bead after 20,000 km still have just enough tread to keep the studs in place.
  • 02-23-2015
    newfangled
    ^ how old are your m&g when they're failing? Mine are on the backup bike now so their mileage is way down, but this is winter 6. Just wondering when I need to start being paranoid.

    Above freezing this morning, and should be pretty warm this afternoon.
  • 02-23-2015
    jeffscott
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by newfangled View Post
    ^ how old are your m&g when they're failing? Mine are on the backup bike now so their mileage is way down, but this is winter 6. Just wondering when I need to start being paranoid.

    Above freezing this morning, and should be pretty warm this afternoon.

    We bought four fall of 2006 to train all winter for theTransrockies.....one left.
  • 02-23-2015
    CommuterBoy
    Who's "We" Jeffscott? Did you do Transrockies with a spouse? Because that is cool...

    I guess that's the positive of it not snowing here anymore... another year of bonus life out of the studs :) I think I've put 14 miles on them this winter... and it was a bad call...not very icy that day after all.
  • 02-23-2015
    jeffscott
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    Who's "We" Jeffscott? Did you do Transrockies with a spouse? Because that is cool...

    I guess that's the positive of it not snowing here anymore... another year of bonus life out of the studs :) I think I've put 14 miles on them this winter... and it was a bad call...not very icy that day after all.

    Nope four of us did the challenge, one guy kept his, one guy gave me his so I had 4 tires, from 2007 on. one guy was from ontario didn't do the winter riding.
  • 02-23-2015
    CommuterBoy
    OK that's cool too. :lol: That would be an epic adventure.
  • 02-23-2015
    jeffscott
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by CommuterBoy View Post
    OK that's cool too. :lol: That would be an epic adventure.

    Great fun turned fifty on the finish line.
  • 02-23-2015
    TenSpeed
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blockphi View Post
    A crappy one this morning. 35F and rain. In February. In Alaska. This is so not right. Just about went down a couple of times on the ice in town. Over the weekend I was able to get a long-ish ride in on Saturday - 33 miles of road. The idea was to ride trail, but every trail option I found was so covered in ice that it would've been suicide, so... Road miles aren't so bad sometimes - had a lot on my mind, so riding that way helped me to zone out a bit and try to work through them. Ended up riding a 28 mile day on both Thursday and Friday so I could watch my daughter in her state ski races. I can tell I am in winter shape right now. The distances were easy enough, but three days of bigger miles than normal has my legs feeling it today.

    Looks like we are getting your winter block - Currently 1F right now, was -11F when I woke up. 35 and rain? I would gladly trade you.
  • 02-23-2015
    CommuterBoy
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jeffscott View Post
    Great fun turned fifty on the finish line.

    Mid-30's when you started? I know the feeling. hahaha
  • 02-23-2015
    bedwards1000
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TenSpeed View Post
    Looks like we are getting your winter block - Currently 1F right now, was -11F when I woke up. 35 and rain? I would gladly trade you.

    And when your done with it, we'll get it in the morning. -15F forecast with some breeze.

    Jeffscott, I looked up the Transrockies after you mentioned it in another thread. Looks like quite a challenging race!

    Other than the cold it looks like I might get a consistent week of commuting on the fatbike at least. No big storms on the horizon. Tons of deer around this morning.
    The Candid Cyclist: The Year Of The Deer
  • 02-23-2015
    CommuterBoy
    1 Attachment(s)
    So, on one of my routes now I have a 5-way stop. That gets interesting. :skep:
    I come from the right side of this pic, and I need to turn left...not a hairpin left, but the other left. Signals mean nothing to anybody at this intersection :lol: Add to that the shock and awe of the presence of a bicycle and you get some good drama.

    Attachment 966899
  • 02-23-2015
    s0ckeyeus
    Rough commute this morning. I skipped out all last week because of snow and ice. We received about 10 inches of snow last week and had rain and freezing rain over the weekend. After riding my mtb around yesterday, I thought today would be OK, but the MUP was unrideable in parts. What had been slushy snow yesterday was like a frozen sponge today. I just couldn't keep enough momentum going to ride the snow and my pedals kept hitting the top layer of ice. I had to walk a number of sections. I got to work about 15 minutes late. I'll probably have to take the road tomorrow.
  • 02-23-2015
    formula4speed
    I guess I'm not the only one who had it rough. We also got snow, didn't think too much of it. Turns out they plowed all the snow off the road onto the MUP I take, so instead of about 6 inches I had 2-3 feet of rutted snow.

    Needless to say my 35s were useless and I had to walk over a quarter of my commute. Pretty annoyed considering we are generally a bike friendly area. Might send a note to the DOT about it, until recently it was headed up by a cyclist. I don't really expect help, but it would be nice if they didn't make it harder to get around by bike.
  • 02-23-2015
    mtbxplorer
    Bedwards, impressed you caught one deer still in bed!

    Back in the saddle today, but I can't say the conditions were welcoming. Killer headwind this morning and -3F made me regret choosing the glasses not the goggles, but I warmed up and it was mostly slow, hard work. Temps dropped during the day but I figured I was due for a tailwind, so I added a poloshirt layer I had at work and rode home.

    Suddenly there was a steaming puddle in the roadway +/- 100' long, perhaps a water main break. Too late to veer left,, so I pedaled straight on through and made it OK, then had a half mile of ice from cars dragging the warm water down the road, but stayed upright. Tailwinds were not as strong as I'd hoped, but it beats headwinds. Struggled a bit with the bike rack on the car at the park-n-pedal, those rubber straps don't work very well in the cold. On the plus side, my uncharged headlight stayed on... this morning I couldn't find the charger and hoped it was at work, but it wasn't.
  • 02-23-2015
    newfangled
    Commute was too short. Had to head straight home to take the dog for a walk, but could have goofed-off for a whole lot longer enjoying the sun and warm temps.
  • 02-24-2015
    rodar y rodar
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    Suddenly there was a steaming puddle in the roadway +/- 100' long, perhaps a water main break. Too late to veer left,, so I pedaled straight on through and made it OK, then had a half mile of ice from cars dragging the warm water down the road, but stayed upright.

    Yikes! I take it you didn`t soak your feet in subzero weather? Now THAT would have been interesting.
  • 02-24-2015
    mtbxplorer
    ^^No, thankfully my feet stayed dry, I rode through slowly and also had on winter Keens boots. The frost line is down at 4-5' where the water mains are, so a lot of towns are having trouble with frozen/burst lines. I have a well, and so far so good. The furnace is still finicky after repairs though, woke up to 48F inside today (-15F outside). A cozy 56 now with a restart and the gas stove helping. Morrisville VT is currently -33F! Jay Peak has gotten 261 inches of snow http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/01/tr...s-rejoice.html It has been quite a winter - so far!
  • 02-24-2015
    s0ckeyeus
    I took a different way today. It kind of sucks because there's quite a bit of traffic, and I have to cut over from the shoulder to the left turn lane. It's actually rideable though. The highlight of my commute was launching off a chunk of snow in the bike lane. I caught some pretty good air.

    Coming into the parking lot at work, I hit a patch of ice and my bike slid out. I caught myself with a foot, but a dude in a passing van opened his door, leaned out, and yelled, "I seen ya!" I got a chuckle out of that.
  • 02-24-2015
    Texan-n-Fla
    No ride for me today. Meeting a friend in Tampa after work, so I took the van.
  • 02-24-2015
    bedwards1000
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    ^^No, thankfully my feet stayed dry, I rode through slowly and also had on winter Keens boots. The frost line is down at 4-5' where the water mains are, so a lot of towns are having trouble with frozen/burst lines. I have a well, and so far so good. The furnace is still finicky after repairs though, woke up to 48F inside today (-15F outside). A cozy 56 now with a restart and the gas stove helping. Morrisville VT is currently -33F! Jay Peak has gotten 261 inches of snow http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/01/tr...s-rejoice.html It has been quite a winter - so far!

    I've had times lately crossing the lake where I break through to a slush layer. As soon as my boot comes out it freezes solid, repeat as necessary. I got to work and had 2 blocks of ice for feet. Not easy to walk across smooth flooring! I had to leave my boots in a shower stall to thaw and drain.

    I checked the Mount Washington Observatory: Min temp -34F, AVERAGE wind 71.3MPH.:eek:.

    Caught a ride this AM, fatbiking the trails home.
  • 02-24-2015
    Kleebs
    New personal record for coldest commute today. 0F with a windchill of -23F. Overall, I actually overdressed, but my boots just aren't warm enough to handle temps that low. Toes were freezing, but everything else was warm and a bit steamy.

    There was a lot of traffic this morning for some reason, which means people think they can use the parking lane and bike lane as their personal get-ahead-of-the-line lane. Which is dumb because the lanes merge half a mile down the road and then everyone gets more backed up. Sidewalks weren't rideable on my 35c tires so I got to experience the joy of bike frogger, weaving between half merged SUVs that were sitting still as if stuck in a quagmire. There were many insults hurled, but none of which could pierce their cozy cage bubble.
  • 02-24-2015
    TenSpeed
    ^ congrats on the personal record. What kind of socks are you wearing with your current footwear?
  • 02-24-2015
    blockphi
    1 Attachment(s)
    A decent ride in this AM. Things have started to freeze back down after the latest rain/thaw event, but the trails are a mess. Lots of ruts and gouges that are freezing now and lots of water still under the little bit of snow that still exists. Good grip, overall.

    Out in the valley the roads and MUP are clear, clean, and fast. I'm hoping we get some good snow in the next week or so. Otherwise a ride I'm planning will likely not go down.

    Attachment 967116
  • 02-24-2015
    Kleebs
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TenSpeed View Post
    ^ congrats on the personal record. What kind of socks are you wearing with your current footwear?

    Today was a pair of Wigwam wool hiking socks.
  • 02-24-2015
    blockphi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Kleebs View Post
    Today was a pair of Wigwam wool hiking socks.

    On really cold days I've found that a really light merino sock as a base, a plastic bread bag, then a decent wool sock on top really helps to keep my feet warm. Another option that has worked for me is the light liner sock with a SealSkinz sock overtop and then, depending on how cold, maybe another light wool sock on top of that. The whole vapor barrier idea.
  • 02-24-2015
    Kleebs
    Thanks for the advice. For next winter I'll have to invest in some liners and potentially heavier socks. This is my first winter riding so I'm kind of feeling it out as I go.
  • 02-24-2015
    CommuterBoy
    I'm pretty sure if I was biking across a frozen lake and broke through to a slush layer, I would die of a heart attack and the wetness of my boots wouldn't be a factor.

    In other news, I sold some stuff... the fatbike budget now has more than a zero balance... eyeballing the new Framed Alaskan Alloy. I'm a few craigslist sales short of placing an order... Could be a month, could be next winter...but the budget exists.
  • 02-24-2015
    bedwards1000
    ^^What do you need a fatbike for? If you buy one it will never snow there again. I've been eying the Framed bikes too. Look at the gearing. The gearing is pretty high if you ride hills. Although, as I look again it seems to be getting better. Bikes I was looking at had 32F/32R(max). I've got something like 22F/36R on the Pugs and am often wishing for something lower. Other than that they seem pretty good.
  • 02-24-2015
    mtbxplorer
    I forgot to mention that I also met the Grim Reaper last night. She (?) was walking toward me on the road, long capelike hooded coat wide open to the wind and cold, and spooky goth makeup and bright red lipstick. I moved over a little more in case she got the urge to sacrifice me under the wheels of a passing car. I hope she had somewhere warm to go.
  • 02-24-2015
    blockphi
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mtbxplorer View Post
    I forgot to mention that I also met the Grim Reaper last night. She (?) was walking toward me on the road, long capelike hooded coat wide open to the wind and cold, and spooky goth makeup and bright red lipstick. I moved over a little more in case she got the urge to sacrifice me under the wheels of a passing car. I hope she had somewhere warm to go.

    pictures or it didn't happen?
  • 02-24-2015
    CommuterBoy
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    ^^What do you need a fatbike for? If you buy one it will never snow there again. I've been eying the Framed bikes too. Look at the gearing. The gearing is pretty high if you ride hills. Although, as I look again it seems to be getting better. Bikes I was looking at had 32F/32R(max). I've got something like 22F/36R on the Pugs and am often wishing for something lower. Other than that they seem pretty good.

    N+1 man. :lol: Snow is one thing...I do hope it actually snows here at 4500 feet in the Sierra Nevada MOUNTAINS some day again, so I can ride the local snowmobile trails... but I also love the idea of just riding off into the pine needles and exploring... we also have some desert nearby that would be fun.. and I have a brother that lives on the coast, and every time I'm there I want to just get on the beach and go...
    And gearing...I'm with ya...but I have a spare wolftooth 42 already, and I'm 1x10 with a 34 front on my MTB. 1x10 with a wolftooth and a 32 up front sounds manageable, although admittedly I've never ridden a fatbike... totally sold on 1x10 though.
  • 02-24-2015
    bedwards1000
    ^^There you go. You do need lower gears pushing fat-flat tires through snow uphill with the rear wheel spinning faster than the front. With the wolftooth and the possibility to drop the front from 32 to 28 that should do it. I did test ride a Framed Minnesota last weekend around a small pump track they had set up. It was a little too small for me and with that and the track it felt like a BMX bike next to the Pig. Desert on a fatbike sounds fun.
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blockphi View Post
    pictures or it didn't happen?

    That's what I was thinking.
  • 02-24-2015
    mtbxplorer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blockphi View Post
    pictures or it didn't happen?

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    That's what I was thinking.

    Don't you guys know anything??!!! The Grim Reaper's image does not show up in photographic images! The first thing I saw was a reflective glint - a belt buckle? a scythe? It was a teensy bit scarey.
  • 02-24-2015
    bedwards1000
    Of course the images show up on film. I've seen it on Monty Python. "It was the salmon mousse". But I understand being ascared.
  • 02-24-2015
    NDD
    I've been having to use the busy roads lately. Not digging it but I get out too early for most of the crazies.

    Tried the mup today. Couldn't get traction. It was all melted and twice frozen snow and boot ruts. Walked about a quarter of a mile and got back on the road.

    Is there like a technique or something to this that I'm missing? Maybe studs would help but there's gotta be something else. Two weeks a year does not justify studded tires.
  • 02-24-2015
    s0ckeyeus
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by NDD View Post
    I've been having to use the busy roads lately. Not digging it but I get out too early for most of the crazies.

    Tried the mup today. Couldn't get traction. It was all melted and twice frozen snow and boot ruts. Walked about a quarter of a mile and got back on the road.

    Is there like a technique or something to this that I'm missing? Maybe studs would help but there's gotta be something else. Two weeks a year does not justify studded tires.

    Sounds like we're in a similar boat. Lower tire pressure helps a little and getting your weight back a bit helps too, but some snow is just plain difficult or impossible to ride through.
  • 02-24-2015
    jeffscott
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by NDD View Post
    I've been having to use the busy roads lately. Not digging it but I get out too early for most of the crazies.

    Tried the mup today. Couldn't get traction. It was all melted and twice frozen snow and boot ruts. Walked about a quarter of a mile and got back on the road.

    Is there like a technique or something to this that I'm missing? Maybe studs would help but there's gotta be something else. Two weeks a year does not justify studded tires.

    Twice frozen sounds like it is well consolidated ie you are not sinking in to the snow pack????

    The frozen ruts and boot prints are very rough to ride....I get the weight a little bit back steer with the hips...let the front wheel go where it wants (to a limit) and spin.

    Not sure why you don't have traction were you going uphill??? on the flats it shouldn't be much of a problem.

    Full suspension also helps....studs help with traction and steering, but you still need the technique.