Showing posts from September, 2015

Ride a Century? Done!

On Saturday, I completed a goal I've had for quite some time - I completed a century ride on my Salsa Vaya!

I'm proud of what I did - I'm getting kinda teary-eyed thinking about that moment when I realized I rode my bike for 100 miles! You see, a century ride is something that I never though I could do when I started bicycling six years ago. It's not something I thought I could do earlier this summer, even. But rides like the Box of Frogs, Riotgrravel and my bike packing trip have made me feel stronger both physically and mentally. As the summer progressed, my century ride thinking morphed from "Hey, I think I can do a century" to "When I do a century I'll ride my Vaya" (it's my most comfortable bike) to "I'm going to do a century this fall."

I rode my bike to train but I think the most important thing I did to get ready for this century ride is this - I told myself I could do it and started to believe I could, in fact, pedal m…

Coffee and Hammock Adventure

It's raining this afternoon so my mind is going back to last week when the weather was perfect and I went on a perfect bike ride adventure.

Last Wednesday, my friend Katy and I headed out for a bike ride from Northfield to Caron Park. Caron Park is a county park located about 8 miles south of Northfield. The route to Caron started out with a killer hill (called Question Mark Hill by the locals) and there are a lot of other hilly portions on the route as well. We managed to ride them all, though, and found our way to Caron Park.
One of our plans for the ride was to have an adventure coffee like we did on our Coffee Outside Ride. I was out of fuel for my little Esbit pocket stove so Katy packed a one burner camping stove in a backpack so we could have coffee outside. First, though, we had to find an ideal location. Katy knew of a waterfall in the park so we set off on some single track (created and maintained by the local mountain bike club - CROCT - The Cannon River Offroad Cyclin…

Prepping for a Century

About a month ago when Owen and I were on our bike packing trip, I decided I'd like to do a century ride. I've long wanted to do a century ride but have been somewhat intimidated by, well, riding 100 miles all at once. On top of that, a lot of the organized century rides are pretty challenging. But Owen came up with a century ride idea that sounded good to me so I'm going to give it a go!

Owen came up with a hundred mile route that is all on bike trails, most of them crushed limestone. I'll ride my comfortable Salsa Vaya and Owen will ride his Salsa Mukluk. Owen has done a half a dozen century rides before (he completed one yesterday as part of his ten ride personal road biking challenge) but he's never ridden a century on a fat bike. So we'll both be doing something new - I'll do my first century and Owen will do his first fat bike century.

The route will be fairly easy to ride and I plan to stop a lot along the way to rest and drink coffee (I do that on m…

Coffee Outside Ride!

It's been a goal of mine for quite some time to actually have an "adventure coffee" bike ride. Many of my bicycling friends post pictures on Instagram with the hash tags of #coffeeoutside and #adventurecoffee and it always looked like a fun thing to do but I didn't even have a suitable pot in which to boil water let alone know the first thing about what sort of equipment I might need. So, I talked to some of my bicycling friends, most notably Michael L. and Christopher T., to ask them what I needed to get set up to make coffee outside and come up with some suitable gravel bike routes to ideal coffee break locations.

I discovered that the little Esbit pocket stove my son Ryan has would work well enough for a stove. I still needed a pot and a coffee making system of some sort so I went to Milltown Cycles last week and talked to Curtis about getting set up to make coffee outside.

Curtis was very helpful and I ended up purchasing a nice little GSI Outdoors Pinnacle Soloi…