Monday, August 4, 2008

Busy riding week

On Thursday I actually managed to turn in another sub 1hr commute. I didn't think I was gonna be able to pull it off, but a skinny guy on a road bike passed me so it gave me something to chase. It's always helpful to have that carrot to chase.

I slowly caught up to him over about a mile and a half, and passed him a few hundred feet before we got to a crossing on the bike path. I came to a near-stop to check for traffic, saw that it was clear, and went on my way.

Shortly thereafter I was passed again. Apparently he saw that it was clear since I went.

I gave chase again, slowly reeling him in until we caught up with a group of kids on BMXs. He came in behind them, looked back, and just waved me by. That was rather anticlimactic.

Oh well, as long as I pass people who probably weigh more than a hundred pounds less than me while I'm carrying 20 pounds of stuff I feel good about myself.

Sunday brought my longest ride of the year so far. I wanted some ice cream, so I took a trip over to Young's Jersey Dairy to meet my brother and his wife. I decided to take the rail trail as far as I could, which meant it was close to 25 miles. Each way. Never done a ride that long before without being in a group, but there are towns along the way to resupply at, so I went ahead and did it.

Here is the route that I took.

It's a surprisingly nice ride...the grades are all very gradual and there were a lot of people out. I probably passed 20 people going out there and another 10 on the way back...though one of them passed me on the way back, so I guess he doesn't count. I was riding the Long Haul Trucker because I wanted to have my Garmin Vista GPS mounted--I hadn't charged the Edge in a couple days and didn't think it would last the whole ride. I was correct and it only lasted for the ride there. Rather unfortunate.

Also, I learned that 1/8" leather lace is apparently not strong enough to hold my saddle together as it broke in two places. I'll have to see what else I can find..maybe just a shoelace will do, though it won't look as cool.

I got just a few pictures on the way there, so here they are.

This was taken in Xenia, not long after getting on the rail trail going north. Xenia is the self-proclaimed "Bicycling capitol of the Midwest", and they definitely seem to do a good job with keeping things bike friendly.

Another shot from Xenia. Have I ever mentioned how much I love separated bike paths?

I few miles north of Xenia. There's a horse trail running alongside the rail trail, and there was a stable to rent horses a mile or two further north. I like having the horses separate because dodging horse crap was never my idea of fun.

Car overpass. It looked to be only one lane wide.

A cow riding a bike at Young's Dairy. they seem to be very bike friendly there--there's a pretty good sized bike rack, and they also give free coffe, tea, or soda to cyclists who come in on weekdays. Good marketing considering they're less than a mile from the rail trail.

Back on the trail going south. Not nearly as deep in shadow as the picture would imply.

A little restaurant in Yellow Springs. This was taken over my shoulder on the way back, when I was going in around 12:30 there were probably 20 bicycles and 10 motorcycles out front. Just north there was a park & ride location for the trail and probably another 15 cyclists there. Yellow Springs has a reputation of being full of hippies and stoners, and I'm afraid that I may have to confirm that. North of this intersection I smelled marijuana for about 3/4 mile. Also, fun fact of the day: Firefox's spell check does not recognize "stoners" as a valid word.

Well, that was my ride. I'll have to do it again sometime, but I'll try the gelato. Maybe play some miniature golf at Young's. This is the kind of ride that would be great to do with another person, but unfortunately I have yet to find a riding partner here.

Young's sponsors a charity ride every year that is 2 day, 83 miles per day that I would like to try next year--if I can gather up the $200 that is required.


JafaBrit's Art said...

Actually while it has a reputation for hippies and stoners, it actually isn't filled with hippies and stoners. Honest!

WE get a lot of visitors who dress like hippies and think they can come here and openly smoke pot (and some try), and they are the one's that seem to be noticed by other visitors. Hence reinforcing an age old and rather tiresome stereotype. Our police department is very aggressive about dealing with drugs. I personally don't know anyone that is a stoner, and most of the original ys hippies are so old the most thing that is hip about them is hip problems lol!

We are a community that is very diverse and what it might seem is not what it is. I hope you don't let a perception colour your thoughts to the point of doing all the hardworking and decent folks in yellow springs a disservice.

respectfully yours
corrine who is not a hippie and not a stoner

Bob said...

Your description of Yellow Springs sounded less uptight, less judgmental, and more fun than the previous comment.

It is always fun to real people in. :-) The ride sounds and looks like a ride I would want to make regularly.

jodycb said...

That looks like a great area to ride. I'm very jealous of all your separated bike paths.

HopmasterSpankyJ said...

I did close to the same ride Sunday. I did Wegeryzn Park (North Stillwater) to Peaches for supper. I enjoy Yellow Springs, I think YS is a hoot. My first half century!

Please consider a blog reader ride.

Also, going North from Yellow Springs, do you stay on the trail or go up SR68?

Lazy Bike Commuter said...

Didn't mean to sound too judgmental, I suppose it's hard to tell the visitors from the residents when riding through a small part of town. It looks like it's probably a nice place to visit, sometime I might hit up that Peach Grill that had all the bikes in front.

Yeah, I still can't get over how nice it is. My former home had one separated trail, and it didn't really go anywhere. I'm surprised Dayton isn't certified bike-friendly, but it looks like they're trying. Maybe I should go to a few meetings and get to know some people.

Did you follow the Creekside trail all along my route? We probably passed each other, I was in transit on the way back from maybe 2:30-4. A ride would be cool, I'm always up for meeting people. I don't get to do anything much for the next week though since being on call at work keeps me tethered to my computer.

HopmasterSpankyJ said...

Fellow Lazy Fellow:

My son and I did Stillwater, Mad, Creekside, and #1 (whatever Xenia North is called) that Sunday slowly from 1:00-3:00 as my sons bike broke. Had to call Mom SAG to get him. Returning, I averaged 11.76 MPH. I averaged 15 in the short Tour D'Burg 26 mile ride. If that is not too slow, we can do something.

Does anyone have an answer to the Young's Trail access question? I am hearing that you must use SR68 north of YS. Thanks in advance.

Lazy Bike Commuter said...

Oh, forgot to list that part.

I was on the rail trail all the way up until W Jackson Rd. I'm not sure how much further one can go, but definitely that far. I did have to take 68 south for a very short distance, but that's the road that Young's is on so it's ratehr unavoidable.

Hey, I'm up for riding at any not-faster-than-me speed.

JafaBrit's Art said...

Hiay, that's okay, it is not a hard impression to form considering the reputation and experience of smelling what might be pot.

Peaches is fun, The Winds it one of the best in the Dayton Area but more formal, Sunrise Cafe is charming and good quality food, and the newest in town, Williams Eatery, is very reasonable (american and peruvian food) and family oriented.

It is a fun place to visit, with lots of charming shops, and LOTs of events (street fair, art stroll, third friday flings). If you want to check out events/shops, things to do just visit the chamber of commerce website.

I forgot to mention I liked your photographs.

happy biking
regards corrine