You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘biking’ tag.

If I don’t ride today, that makes 3 days in a row that I haven’t biked. Throw that goal out the window. But I was talking to my friend about it and she asked me why I wanted to do it anyway. I ride more than anyone she knows. I realized that it was just another popular thing to do. I do want to encourage others to ride more–I don’t have to ride more to do that.

On Sunday, I ran 3 miles, then went with my brother to Marble Mountain Sno-Park to hike Mount Saint Helens on Sunday. We got up at 3am, started up the mountain at 4:15, but turned around by 7am just past the permit point (4800 ft) when it was obvious that the rain was not going to let up. We returned to the parking lot at 9 am with every piece of clothing we were wearing totally soaked. I stayed warm in my ski clothes, but my brother was really cold by then–he’d only worn rain gear and a puffy jacket.

It wasn’t that disappointing not to make it all the way up. It was cloudy enough that there wouldn’t be any views and we made it last year, so I have that summit under my belt.

I didn’t take any pictures up there, but I did take a few of the new day use lodge. It really improves the place.

Advertisements

I’m not as good about posting daily on social media, so I’m just going to have a periodic check in here for #30daysofbiking

I always have a few days that I miss, so this might be* my first successful year.

  • April 1: Rode home from Kitsap Memorial State Park, then again up to Capitol Hill
  • April 2: Cap Hill to City Hall for bike advocacy, then a failed shopping attempt at Macy’s and Westlake Center (fire alarm on the second stop)
  • April 3: Bartell Drugs for an immunization and Stone Hardware for plant seeds and tools

*I have a couple of overnight trips that don’t include biking, so if I can’t muster up the energy to bike around the block after climbing Mount Saint Helens, I could fail this year as well.

I’m going to go out and plant some of those seeds now. I hope I don’t blow away!

I watched the weather and waited, and finally it was close enough to my vacation to call it. We were going bike camping!

It’s barely spring in the Pacific Northwest, so the weather could have been torrential rain–and it’s supposed to be starting tomorrow–but we got our window of partly sunny, highs in the upper 60s.

I’d some some research where I wanted to go. I eliminated two places I’d gone before; Fay Bainbridge and Manchester State Park. The first was too close and would be more crowded. The second I’ve been to 3 times now and I’m ready for something different and a little further away.

Looking at Marley Blonsky’s post, A Non-definative Guide to Bike Overnighters Within an Hour-ish of Seattle, I settled on Kitsap Memorial State Park. A coworker seconded my choice–it was nice to talk to someone I know who’s been there. It’s a 20 mile ride with lots of other options for exploring. A grocery 5 miles away and a convenience store nearby. The hiker biker sites have tables and a fire ring, which isn’t always the case at other places.

We ended up leaving at around noon on Saturday to get there.

The timing was good because the ferry was easy and check in time was 2:30–no problems checking in early, but there was no camp host, so no on site firewood. We got some the second night from the convenience store.

It was hard to find the entrance to the hiker biker sites, but they were nicely secluded from the car sites. They were hidden down an unmarked trail directly to the left at the entrance to the parking lot.

We spent some time at the beach and exploring the park. It’s really small, but the view was nice. We got some camp neighbors that night who were biking around the peninsula, and this was the last night out. We went to bed early, but they stayed up late, chatting by their fire.

The second day we explored by bike, taking a round about way back to Poulsbo for groceries. I do love the Central Market.

We got back, bought wood, enjoyed the beach some more, took a shower (tokens purchased from a vending machine with $1 bills) and made a fire.

The next day we had a leisurely breakfast by the fire and rolled out around noon again.

We rode back through Port Gamble and Kingston. After the ferry, we stopped at Walnut Street Coffee for a caffeine and cookie pick me up, but still the hills in Edmonds almost kicked our ass. We persevered and made it to The Yard for celebratory tacos, and then it was only a few miles home.

A really great weekend. Here are a few more photos.

Things go around. I have been micro-blogging on Google+ for the last two years. I really enjoyed the interaction there and made a few really good friends, several of whom I’ve met in real life.

Google+ is going away in a week. I’ve had a lot of time to mourn it’s passing, so it will be anticlimactic when the date finally comes. I’m not porting my posts.

I’m not sure if I’ll start blogging here again. I feel like a blog is just yelling into the void these days. Does anyone read these anymore? I don’t want to return to Facebook, and while Twitter and Instagram are fun, they really aren’t a place to post personal stories.

I’m still biking and hiking and now I’m skiing and dating. Everything is going really well and my anxiety is mostly under control. Exercise has always helped, but things I’d like to do, like meditation, I have a hard time concentrating on…because anxiety. So I started taking CBD oil, and it could be a placebo affect, but I’m sleeping better, I’m not letting things bother me as much, everything is so much easier. I still get anxious, but a manageable and maybe even a normal amount.

Photo from bike camping last summer. I finally found my way! ;)

profile

I had the weirdest dream last night. I don’t remember all of it, but I was on a supported ride, and I was riding alone. There was someone I was competing with, who was fairly evenly matched with me. We were racing along, taking turns at the front. At some point I lost him. Then I lost the ride itself. I ended up in sand. It was bright and sunny and I could see everyone up above, on a pathway that was paved and I was riding in sand along the bottom of a cliff.

I felt something go wonky with my bike, so I looked down. Suddenly parts of my bike were gone. The front wheel, my handlebars. I was left holding the stem. I didn’t crash, but I lost momentum and set her down gently. Suddenly I was in an urban area, climbing around an industrial building. I found a Mad Max style bike shop, thinking I could bring the parts of my bike there to get it fixed. I had to hurry though, I was loosing my nemesis.

no_handlebars_by_theacidreign

Then I woke up.

…bikes? Vacations? Gummy bears?

I know most of my bikey friends are all about the n+1, but after a round of “fix all the things!” and bike shopping and frustration, I decided to upgrade my Surly Pacer and sell Lucille, the Bike Friday Tikit.

Lucille went home with a very nice man from Tacoma, whom I hope will find her quite trustworthy, especially with all her new components. I know that my mechanic will be happy to know she’s moved far away. He always did a wonderful job repairing her, but she was a pain in the ass.

My Surly Pacer–I’m thinking about naming her Dark Star after the Fremont Brewing’s Imperial Oatmeal Stout, which is my favorite winter beer. “Dark Star crashes, pouring its light into ashes, so follow as the Lady of Velvet recedes in the nights of goodbye. This one is too smooth …”–is all fixed up with new wheels, cassette and chain, bar end shifters, brake levers, front deraileur, fairly new chainrings and got herself a nice tune up. The gearing is the major improvement with an 11/30 instead of a 12/25. I was able to ride the way it was, but now I’m not sure why I did for so long. It’s like having a whole new bike.

I also cleaned the frame up and used some rustoleum spray paint to protect it. She is so pretty.

We took a 2 week sail in early July. It was a lot of fun with stops in Victoria Canada, Sidney Island, Jones Island, Friday Harbor, Lopez Island, Sucia, and Port Townsend. Lopez was really great and flat, allowing us to bike all over with the kids, visiting the farmers market, the grocery, and the bird sanctuary with them. Click on the picture to see more sailing photos.

And this last weekend, Chris and I went bike camping. We rode out separately, since I was off on Thursday and he came out on Friday night. We rode back together on Sunday. The rest of my family, whom we met there, drove and I still kick myself for not taking a picture of my bike among all of those cars. Again, click on the photo for more pictures of that adventure.

Right now I’m procrastinating on the final packing for our cruise to Alaska. This is on an actual cruise ship, not on Raven. I’m going to miss our hobbit hole. It might be time for a nap.

Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of VietnamCatfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam by Andrew X. Pham

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A gritty bike journey through the US West coast, Japan and finally, Vietnam. An (Andrew) bikes through all these places in search of himself, even though he is often more lost on his introspective journey than when he began. Interspersed with the tale of his travels are flashes to the past when he was a child in Vietnam before, during, and after the war, and as an immigrant in the US, ending up in Los Angeles.

An has a lot of self hate, and he seems to be searching for a way to like himself: if he can only find a reason to like the Vietnamese, he might learn to like himself. I’m not certain that ever happens, but he has a grand adventure trying.

All in all, very entertaining. I always wanted to know what would happen next and I found his ability to keep going despite his setbacks inspiring. I would have liked a bit more of an ending, but this is a memoir, so I’ll have to live with reality.

View all my reviews

We had a lovely time in Florida and somehow I managed to put out of my mind that going to Florida would make it near impossible to do 30 Days of Biking in April. Oops.  Oh well, I’m back on the bike and now using MapMyRide to keep track of miles for the National Bike Challenge. I’ll also use it for the Cascade/Adobe Commute Challenge, but I don’t think it will do the auto upload thing for that–which it shouldn’t, only commute miles count for that.

So, Florida.  The Mister chartered us a sailboat and we sailed in the Keys for a few days. It was in the 80’s with good winds and plenty of room on the boat for the 5 of us. We had a wonderful time exploring the reef and Key West and then we went to Honeymoon Island outside of Tampa/Dunedin. Click on the picture below for the entire album.

People in Key West ride bikes, but I did not see one helmet.

 

Now that I’m back I’m in full swing planning bikey stuff. I have 3 major things going on. Sound Cycling biking info fairs at the library this weekend, the Commute Challenge–I’m a team captain for the Paperback Riders, and for Books on Bikes we’re hosting a Bike to Work day booth at the Green Lake library.  Our Seattle Public Library Teams will be challenging the King County Library System’s teams this year.  They have 5 teams and 25 riders. We have 2 teams and about 20 riders, so we’ll probably base the competition on percentages of commutes ridden. They also have a lot more ground to cover in a county than we do in a city, although that might not be a big deal.

As for reviews, I have two I plan to write today, although I’ll probably try to set them to publish a day or so down the road.  They are pre-releases anyhow, so you can’t get your hot little hands on them for another few weeks.  Still, good to place holds early and often!

Oh, as an FYI who know The Boy, he is moving to Spokane next week to try his hand at job seeking there. It seems that the Darrington/Marysville area is pretty barren and that Seattle is just too big for a small town kid.  Wish him luck!

It seems that I will be torturing you with bike posts until I finally finish a book. Sometimes there are luls in the reading enthusiasm, or books are just extra long, or I’m reading 3 at once so it takes FOREVER. Or at least it seems that way. Also, if a book is meh, or the second book in a series, I might not review it. Just star and tag in Goodreads and let that be that.

So, biking! My knee is getting better, although I can still feel a pull in there. I keep riding and it keeps getting better, so I figure I’m not hurting anything.

The first of April, the first day of #30daysofbiking, was my day off. I had plenty of errands to run though and ended up with 19.2 miles.  Here’s a quick picture tour:

 

 

Errand 1, FedEx pickup

Errand 2: Emergency Gardening Tool Delivery

Errand 3: Yeast retrieval from Cellar Homebrew

Errand 4: Met with Emily from Cascade and retrieved a growler of Balebreaker IPA from Bottle Works

Day 2 was fairly cool. I rode to work and and on the ride home I randomly met up with  a friend and we got a beer at Chucks Hop Shop. 10.6 Miles.

On day 3 I took the long way to work. I took a bunch of pictures with my Contour Roam 2, which you can see if you click on the picture below. 15 miles

Hello Crow!

Today was less exciting. I rode to work the regular way, then met my family at Northgate. 8.4 Miles. I took The Boy to dinner, then caught a ride home with The Mr. Now we’re all looking at our respective gadgets and relaxing. The Boy is taking in a movie with friends and will be back tomorrow.

I may go on a longer ride with my Woolbuddies on Sunday, but it depends on how planning for the Tour de Cure Fundraising Dinner goes. That’s Sunday evening and trumps everything else.

Recapping, This week from Tues-Friday: 53.2 Miles

Bikes Ridden: Surly the Pacer and Lucille the little green Bike Friday Tikit

Wheeee!  I feel so fortunate when I get to have an interaction with a favorite author on Twitter. It just makes me all glowy.

I read Justine Larbalestier’s post on her blog (which I found through a twitter post) about a cycling adventure. I was impressed because I didn’t know she biked and told her so and she tweeted back at me. I wanted to dance around it makes me so happy.

I’m missing my bike right now. I did a dumb thing and hurt my knee falling over a speed bump in a parking lot. I was looking for a car2go and it wasn’t where it was supposed to be and I was distracted. It didn’t hurt at all, although I had to ice it for some swelling. I rested for 2 days, then rode my bike for 2 days to work and it was still fine, so I went running on the fifth day and oops, not so good. The swelling came back and it started to hurt, too. The bruising came out then as well and I had a pretty purple pattern all over. That’s fading now and I’m feeling good again, but I’ve banned myself from the bike and running until April 1st. No fooling (I wish I was).

Why April 1st? Well, April is the 30 Days of Biking is a fun challenge because it gets me on my bike on my days off, when I’m tempted to take it easy or stay home cleaning. I’m also signing up for The National Bike Challenge that runs May – October and I’ll be doing Bike to Work month in May. I’m a team captain and love the idea of getting my coworkers to bike to work, however, I also love logging all of my bikey miles with the National Bike Challenge which doesn’t care where you are riding to or how often. It just gives a bit more of a sense of accomplishment.  And April 1st so that I don’t start too soon and hurt myself again and have another setback.

So, as you can see, I am a little bike obsessed, as well as YA author obsessed.

Advertisements