Friday, October 28, 2011

The Halloween WilliBrew Ride

Need something to do this weekend?

Sunday is the third installment of a fun bike ride from Pedal Power in Vernon CT out to the Willimantic Brewery in Willimantic CT. Probably about 20 or so miles of rail trail riding with a giant posse and such.

Costumes are encouraged. I got my Halloween bike all ready.

That image was from the book-of-faces 'event' page (here).

Here is the official route:

We are going to drive out to Willimantic to meet up with a bunch of friends, then ride to Vernon to meet up with the posse and then ride back to Willimantic.

Come on out. It'll be a grand ol' time.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Northeast Kingdom 2011

The other weekend (Columbus Day weekend), Ginger and I ventured up into the NorthEast Kingdom to ride our bikes for three days. A much needed break from the house and crap at work. The last time I rode the Kingdom Trails was back in 2007 when I was trying to fix my pinched sciatic nerve. This was certainly a must need trip.
The weather was phenomenal... sunny all weekend. temps around 50/60 in the morning and topping out in the low 80s (actually a high for northern VT in Oct). Trails were tacky in the morning and dry throughout the rest of the day. Perfect conditions. Crowds were fairly large as Peter chose to hold Canadian Thanksgiving that same weekend. It was also prime time for leaf peepers so Vermont was quite busy that weekend.
We shot up there after work on Friday. Rode just about all day on Saturday, mainly the Darling Hill area. Sunday we meet up with Emile and his wife and rode with them for a few hours in the morning. Then went our own ways and met up with George for an afternoon of riding.
The top of 'Webs'
 Flying through 'Webs'
'Sidewinder' didn't exist last time I was there. It is pretty much 'Tap & Die' on steroids.

The beginning of the morning chaos.

George took us on some trails that were less frequented. It was a nice break from the crowds. The crowds actually weren't that bad. Very tolerable considering you would encounter groups of riders ever 15 minutes or so.

Apparently Sasquach has found his way into Vermont.

Doesn't get much better than this... Actually it does. One trail meanders in and through a maple tree grove. Lots of maple syrup being harvested while you duck around the syrup lines running from tree to tree.

Burke Mountain off in the distance.

You ride on some roads that look like this in the Vermont 50.

We bid farewell to George and rested up for another day of riding.

Day three we opted to stay up near Burke Mountain. We had a free lift ride at Burke so we took advantage of it.
Burke Mountain Ski Resort just opened their new bike park this past summer. Now you, too, can ride a lift up and fly down Burke with your DH/AM/whatever bike you are riding. They even built a few man-made trails which are pretty sweet.

Yes, I rode my hardtail. Actually navigated the downhill routes pretty well (didn't clear any table tops though. That's for next time... On another bike.).

Such a great weekend to officially kick off autumn, the best time of the year to ride.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

my summer vacation

It has been a while. On one hand I could argue that sitting infront of a computer after work (or before work) is not my cup of tea and therefore I have not been there. On the other hand I could argue that I've had a lot to do the past month and a half. Which ever hand you feel is appropriate, fact of the matter is I have not written much here and have not really ridden my bike much since early August. 

Back in August, folks out in the Rocky Mountains where looking for me..
To their disappointment (and partially mine, because I'd love to be riding in Colorado in August), I was at home swinging hammers going from this:
to this:
which lead to this:
and then we finished the walls and floor. Made for a nice gallery for Peter
but ultimately became this:

Beyond that there were a lot of learning along the way as well as lot of stuff behind the scenes like a whole new plumbing system:

The good news is that is all behind us now and it is FUN cooking meals. We are fully operational like that man-made planet in the sky. I just have some trim work which I'll do later this winter. The window and door trim won't make us vulnerable to proton torpedos so that is another positive. [Victory!]

With that behind us I did find some time to get on the bike: A few days here and there commuting across Hartford on the fixie to be exact.

I also found a good home for my last 26" wheeled bicycle.
There is a sad part in that after I cleaned it up nice and dialed in the derailleurs and suspension settings, the bike seemed quite fun to ride (around the yard). With all this reading about various weapons I have been getting the urge for another suspension bike. The Vicious I just sold wouldn't fit that urge though (think things like Highland). We'll see where I go with this...

Yesterday, was an unpaid day off. Ginger and I spent the three-day weekend riding bikes. George also came out to play on what is known as 10-9 (Bike Messenger Appreciation Day). More on that tomorrow.

Rode to work again today. Autumn is here in CT. Was a great ride to and fro. Looking forward to tomorrow's ride to work..