Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Archive for April, 2011

Spring road ride

Monday, April 11th, 2011

I was invited to do a 60ish mile mixed-terrain ride with RCCS on Sunday. It was tempting, but that ride would have taken up basically the whole day. I decided to skip it. I did get out for about two hours on my road bike. It felt great to get out for something other than a commute.

Since I had limited time, I wanted to make the most of it, so I did what seems to have become my favorite short route, when I’m feeling spicy. A ride west of town, out to the small town of Stanford, Indiana.

I’ve written about this route a few times before, but I’ve never ridden it in spring. Things are turning green, and trees and flowers are blooming everywhere. It was a delightful ride.

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As you can see below, the wind was blowing quite hard. I had a headwind on the ride out.

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It was also a very hilly ride. This is probably the hardest short route I’ve found, around here. Somewhere around 1900 feet of climbing, in 23 miles. So, it’s difficult — but also a whole lot of fun. My fitness has suffered somewhat with less riding lately — a couple of steep climbs were even harder than usual — but I did make it up them.

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As always, the Bianchi was a pleasure to ride.

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The sign on this barn changes frequently. Here, it reads, “Christ’s return is imminent. Don’t miss it for the world.” Hmm …

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As you can see, it was a lovely ride. I’m bummed that I missed the RCCS ride, but I certainly made the most of the time I had available, with this ride. And I had time to do other things yesterday as well. I think I struck a good balance.

 

Fixed-gear experiment

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

When I got my singlespeed, I indicated on my blog that I had an interest in trying fixed-gear cycling. Wil generously offered to send me his old fixed-gear wheel, which he didn’t need any longer. Thanks, Wil!

Even though the wheel arrived some time ago, I just hadn’t had time to install it. I finally did, and it still took a week or more for me to actually try it. Saturday I finally had some time and tried the singlespeed in its new fixed-gear configuration. I only had time for a brief spin around the neighborhood of about two miles.

I have to say, it was a very weird experience. I found that while I was rolling, it didn’t really feel much different. But, any time I would try to stop, or slow down, it just felt odd. I tried to put back-pressure on the pedals to slow down, and it sort of worked, but it felt awkward and I wasn’t really sure what I was doing.  I didn’t quite get the hang of it.

I’m definitely going to keep trying. In the meantime, if anyone has any fixed-gear riding tips, especially relating to slowing down/stopping, I would love to hear them.

Spring!

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

викSpring is here, and Bloomington lives up to its name. Here are some shots from around campus, which has particularly beautiful landscaping.

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And here are a few shots I took just down the street from my house.  There are fantastic white-flowering trees lining the road.

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Of course, not everything is white.

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