Experimental music, photography, and adventures

A little exploration close to home

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

On Sunday, I wanted to ride, but didn’t feel up for going very far. So I went for a ride through our neighborhood, and down to Sherwood Oaks Park, the Jackson Creek Trail, and up and over the hill to Olcott Park. It wasn’t epic, but it was a fun romp, and I’m lucky to have scenes like these within minutes of my house.

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I got to test my studded tires in some tough conditions, including some spots where people had walked on the snowy trail, which later froze, resulting in thick, bumpy ice, on a hill.

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The tires worked shockingly well. I had no problems with this stuff.

After visiting the parks, I rode through a few neighborhoods, looking for shortcuts and hidden paths. I found a few. Nothing groundbreaking, but it was fun exploring. Then I rode home.

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I rode about eight miles, at a leisurely pace, but I enjoyed this limited time outdoors immensely.

8 Responses to “A little exploration close to home”

  1. Reuben Says:

    I’m a new reader of the blog. I really like your photos. Keep up the good work.

  2. Eddie Says:

    Often wondered how studded tyres work on clear sections. Are they sketchy at all? Or is it an acceptable trade-off for surefootedness on the icy sections?

  3. Apertome Says:

    Reuben: Thanks!

    Eddie: That depends on what you mean by “sketchy.” In my experience, traction is fine with studs on clear sections. However, they *are* slow and noisy, and you can’t turn as tight as you can with slick tires.

    I’ve been through a few winters without studded tires, and I lived to tell about it. This is my second winter *with* studded tires and I feel a lot more confidence riding with the studded tires. I have to say, I’m a fan.

  4. John Romeo Alpha Says:

    One thing I remember from living in a snowy place was that new trails form when there’s snow on the ground, and along with them, new and interesting ways to go places. Crossing frozen ponds and lakes on a bicycle was thrilling for some reason. Probably because I lacked studded tires! Now I know. Do the studs sound different on the clear sections?

  5. Bill Lambert Says:

    It is pretty cool the places you can go with those studded tires. I think the width and the tread pattern helps almost as much as the studs. I’m nervous, however, on glare ice.

  6. Alice Says:

    As a fellow photographer/cyclist I always enjoy your posts and photos. And after reading your last few posts mentioning the studded tires, I’m considering trying them on my old MTB. I don’t ride much in the winter, but maybe I would if I had studded tires. 🙂 We’re expected to get snow this weekend, so I hope to explore my neighborhood for some good photo opportunities.
    Keep up the good work and be safe out there!

  7. Apertome Says:

    The studs make sort of a “sizzling bacon” sound on pavement. Makes me hungry!

  8. Apertome Says:

    Bill, it depends. In snowy conditions, I think wide, knobby mountain tires can be just as good, if not better. But for the ice the studs really do make a big difference. Glare ice is always a concern. I haven’t had these particular tires out on glare ice just yet, but I think they are more aggressive than my old ones, so hopefully they will do at least as well.

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