Tuesday, August 31, 2010

That would HURT!

Rain Delay Today
Wednesday:  6:00 AM at "the CHURCH!"

Monday, August 30, 2010

By the Numbers

Number of riders:  6: 5: 3: 4: 5: 4: 3
Number of miles: 119.4
Time: 6: 41
Approximate number of calories: 5612
Number of water bottles consumed (Rich) 7
Number of water bottles that should have been consumed: 9
Longest distance between available water: 60 miles
Road temperature: 95 degrees F
Shade stops: 2
Stops at bars or taverns: 2
Number of punctures: 3 (all same rider . . . Doug)
Wind Speed: 25 mph, S
Number of onion rings consumed by Jim: approx 7 cost per ring: $ 0.71
Number of onion rings consumed by Rich: approx 5  cost per ring:  $ 1.00
Number of onion rings consumed by Dave: approx 15  cost per ring: $0.33
Number of onion rings remaining: 2
Number of times we wondered "Why did we order onion rings?"  37
Number of cuss words uttered by Rich when he cramped 2 hrs post ride: 4
Value of ride: priceless

Dave gestures; "It's going to be a long, hot, windy day . . . "
Randy:  That guy always rides fast . . .
Four riders of the Apocalypse 
Doug:  Picked him up walking.  Just had his 2nd puncture of his ride.
Took a tube from us . . . it went flat.  
Moral of story: ALWAYS check your tire before new tube
He proceeded to lead us on a screaming fast 12 miles to Hugo's,
where his schedule required him to depart
We knew we had 60 miles to ride with no opportunity for water.
We made it to the Island Lake Inn on fumes (if water can have fumes)
Lord knows just why we ordered those onion rings . . . 
with 20 more miles ahead of us.
TUESDAY:  6:00 at the corner of SUPERIOR & LESTER RIVER RD

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The old "dollar bill" trick

got me home this morning. Randy S and I rode with the boys to the start of the Pequaywan Lakes road, then each peeled off to take separate routes homes while Rich, Dave, and Jim continued on their epic adventure. Halfway down Howard Gnesen, I blew out my rear tire; I checked that casing but couldn't find any cuts or glass - once I put the new tube in and pumped it up a bit, I found the culprit: a 15mm split in the sidewall, with the tube now bulging out menacingly - and it's been such a fine morning up to now!

In desperation, I wrapped a dollar bill around the tube, stuffed it back in, then pumped it up gently-nothing bulging out through  the cut, so I added a little more air, put things back together and made it home. Sometimes you just get lucky.......

Saturday, August 28, 2010


It has recently come to our attention, that some riders have 
"small windows" of time
James had a small window
Dave had a slightly larger window
while Cory had a really small window
We gotta get everyone a bigger window!
(I know the picture is too big for the blog . . .
 but I gotta' make my point)
Deb and Russ had no window, and had time for 
the the entire early route
Others had later windows
While still others reappeared after a long absence
We got a little lazy and cozy at the MOCHA MOOSE

Where we met NIKKI AND ZACH
HEY!  These two are gettin' married on JAN 1!
On the way back, we run into
Ryan . . . seems the poor lad had two punctures.  
Nice guy, new to cycling . . . I hope he joins us.
Wayne was a little late bringing coffee for Steve
Because he . . . well . . . he
Who ever woulda' thought the
Mocha Moose was a rest home?
7:00 AM at "THE CHURCH"
read the group email for details!

Friday, August 27, 2010


Just Dave and I out this morning.....I've taken some abuse in this forum for my lighting (or lack therof) equipment, but Dave wins this cateogry hands down-I'm a bit surprised that no one has had any seizure acitivity when he rides by. It's time for me to do some shopping.

So we're pedaling along two-up and I'm impressed that Dave just never seems to tire or back off, so in my mind I've got him pegged as 'the engine'. That of course leads to a dedicated inquiry for apt descriptors for the rest of the crew. Here's what I've got so far:
Dave - "the engine"
Jim - "Mr. locomotive"
John - "Hatch"
Vince - "recumbent man"
Me - "single-speed guy"
Mark - "traffic cone guy"
Joe - "Moots"
Deb - "trouble"
Lisa - "more trouble"
What's missing, of course, are apt labels for some our regulars, like James and Rich.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Anybody still reading?

Well there is not much I can add to this besides a small update of what I have heard around the horn... sounds like the weekend 130 mile ride that included Dave S, Russ M, and Jim B... I guess Jim was hoping for a 215 mile ride for he was attacking the last climb...

Mondays ride included some of the local ladies and from what the guys say, they did some butt whooping... as one anonymous riders said "it was like Lisa was trying to personally flog herself for not finishing the race Sunday."  and in the process she was destroying the other EIGHT riders there that am.

Yesterday Rich left for who knows where(maybe somewhere further north then us) John came up with some excuse like he was leaving for the BWCA this am... I am sure he could have ridden first, but whatever...

This am  when the thermometer read 50degrees... Russ, Dave and I(james) went out for another Thursday morning ride where the McQuade climb killed me, and both of them tried to keep me from winning the sprint....

I am not sure if you can see it in Russ's pockets in this picture, but his version of lights are some 5 lb yellow blinking light that he stole from a construction site, and a yellow flashlight....

come on Russ, you are obviously not spending money on your bike, buy some lights...

If You're not Busy Tonight . . .

ROAD: an identifiable thoroughfaare, route, way or path between two places which may or may not be available for use by the public

Note the absence of the word:  asphalt, pavement, blacktop, bitumen, Macadam or concrete

We are "road cyclists," not asphalt cyclists (yuck!)

Tonight is an important event:

We have an opportunity to come together as a group with some great instruction
from a great organization on everything from how to build better trails, to how to work better with our community
to help grow cycling and trails in Duluth.Please take a couple days to join us and
hopefully make Duluth a better cycling community.
The event starts Thursday evening at The Suites Hotel in Canal Park.
Saturday will be a trail construction workshop.
Come and learn what's going on, and hear more about the GRAND TRAVERSE crossing the Duluth hillside.
This is a great opportunity, Please take advantage of it! 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New Roads (and wind)

The BlogMaster (the fella on the right in the previous post) is out for the rest of this week, so you'll have to settle for my perfunctory update.......a new route today from the church for Dave, John (aka 'Hatch'), Jim and Russ - up Woodland, west on Calvary all the way to Rice Lake Road, then north to Emerson, east to Arnold, south to Lismore, east to Jean Duluth, then back to the church. Nice to see some new pavement, but Rice Lake is just too busy (and exposed to the wind) to be too much fun. Thanks to Jim for keeping us all on our toes coming home on Jean Duluth.

The wind seemed stronger yet by the time I left the house for work at 8:15, so I think we timed it right! Tomorrow we'll be at the corner of Lester River Road and Superior Street at 6am.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Question Finally Answered

It has oft been asked:
"If riders rode in the rain, and no one saw them . . . did they ride?"
We can now definitively answer the question, with photographic proof.
(although not with 28 8X10 color glossy photos with circles and arrows)
(note look on rider on right's face, clearly serious work)
Further, it is rumored (although a self-professed rumor) that
another rider rode, claiming that he attempted the conjugation
at 6:03 . . . which does not equal 6:00
However . . . and it is a big however
this rumored rider is prone to riding gravel roads
and is therefore a known scoundrel and ne'er do well and can not be trusted
Without photographic proof . . . can it be believed?

Monday, August 23, 2010


(first and foremost, an apology to those on the Continental ride last Thursday.  I promise will get the photos up no later than Tuesday before I leave again.  I am sorry!)

Riders began  . . . Ok, I was going to use the word "amassing, congregating, gathering . . . or something like that . . . but JIM  pointed out that I can use the word "CONJUGATING."   This is a much cooler word, so I shall use it.

I wonder if the light went on as he had this thought?

Riders began conjugating (see above) promptly at 6:00 am this morning. Mostly the same old crew . . .  even sleepy head John was there.  He was in fact so tired, he left his banana at home.

Note the grin on Dan's face as he attempts to explain his enrollment at St Ben's College

 Mr Single Speed looks as
steady as ever

I know by now you are thinking: "heck . . . other than the unusual use of the word "conjugating," this is a pretty darn boring blog entry . . . in fact, two boring entries in a row from this guy, I think we should replace him" (I know you were thinking that).  I was thinking the same, even considering the notion that our morning ride may be a bit boring . . . when suddenly . . .

Deb; aka "Trouble"

Lisa: aka "More Trouble"  Note how she is already 
looking apologetic . . . before she hurts us

These Women hurt us, hurt us again, then hurt us some more.
As we limped home, tails between our legs . . .
our sage Russ remarked:
"When just the Boys ride we talk about Feelings, Friends, 
Food and Fashion,
When the Girls come out to play we have to work"
Funny how that is
TUESDAY:  6:00 am at the corner of
Superior St and Lester River Rd.
Let's show the gals what we can do . . . come on guys!
(sorry to Rachel and Dave for not getting your pics in here.  ed)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Day After......

The original plan of Dave, Jim and Russ for yesterday was to ride from Duluth, join the Gitche Gami trail ride, then ride home to Duluth for a total of about 125 miles. We made a few adjustments along the way.......

Upon reaching Gooseberry, we found a large group of cyclists

Nice folks all, but in slightly different mode, i.e. lots of rearview mirrors, kickstands, panniers and bags. We rode the trail north to Beaver Bay, then left the regular route and took Highway 15 north west to Sullivan Lake, then Highway 2 south to Two Harbors and a second stop at the Mocha Moose, before heading back down the shore for our planned 125 miles.

Lessons learned:
- we've got some beautiful stretches of road (Hwys 2 and 15) just outside of our normal riding range.
- if you want to cover a lot of ground fast on your bike, take Dave and Jim along with you.
- having some company for the first 30 miles was wonderful - thanks Heidi and Jeff!

Monday morning we'll be at the church for our last week of 6am starts!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Bikes and Trees

No . . . no one ran into a tree today, nor did a tree jump at a rider,
just a couple of photos
Darker and darker . . .
the GHOST BIKE . . .
Today's effort level:  massive
Points winner (sprint): Kyes
Tomorrow:  6:00 am, "the CHURCH"

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

If a rider rides . . .

So I ask you . . .
If three riders rode in the rain . . .
and there was no one there to see them . . . 
Did they ride, or didn't they?
(Thursday we will... 6:00 AM, Lester)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Young Bucks

 At this time of year, as the seasons progress and daylight shortens
We find ourselves pushing the riding envelope . . . 
yet enjoying the sunrise
We also find joy in local wildlife
(You're just gonna' have to trust me, there are 3 bucks in this photo;
we watched 'em for about 5 minutes eating apples)
Imagine my surprise, as nature repeats itself . . .
as 6 bucks
spend the next 2 hours chasing
1 doe . . .
Somewhere here there is a lesson in something
All the bucks were adorned in heavy garb
while the doe, confused by the 48 degree temperature,
wears summer clothing (can I still get a tan she wonders?)
I'm certain she spent her time thinking:
Silly boys . . . 
It was great to have 7 of us this morning
Tomorrow, 6:00 AM at "the CHURCH"

Monday, August 16, 2010

THREE Days of Mindless Drivel from RICH. . .

A heartfelt apology . . .

Yesterday I was just too lazy to post anything

I know that many of you have come to view this as your only source of truly unbiased news . . .

MAN OR BEE . . . 

Nice to have Hillary join us, her longest ride ever!  

It's a good thing thing the good doctor was in to
analyze the situation

As always, the MOCHA MOOSE was a source of entertainment . . . I think we need to lobby for more chairs 

 Two guys sharing a bench will never work.

Jeff, perplexed by the situation vows to spend the rest of the day eating Fritosif he can find a way to carry them.  
Earlier we noticed a funny device on his bike, 
looking suspiciously like a metronome . . .

Was actually a clever device designed
to hold a bag of Fritos

The weather turned hot and windy which led to brain confusion. It seemed to affect some of us more than others as . . .

Just Past
We had a real break; It turned into a $100 ridefor Wayne . . . 
"the Trouble with Tubulars!"

One misguided rider chose to ride past without even saying "hi"
(Tyler . . . oops . . . didn't mean to reveal your identity)
When he realized 1) the error of his ways, and 2) 
a pox would be on his tires
He quickly had a change of heart and joined us.

After "route realization," Sheree finished strong
Ready to ride another day

(this award comes with absolutely nothing but our undying respect)

suffice it to say . . . it was a tad windy
Seven brave (read: idiot) souls turned out at 7:00 to brave the wind

(Russ, Wayne, Jeff,James, Dave,Mark and your author)
To be honest . . . We spent time

Drinking coffee

and laughing at the
absurdity of the situation

Dave chose a GREAT route
We stayed bunched as tight
as possible to stay out of the wind

Our bikes stayed lined
up even when we weren't ridin' 'em
(not sure why that red one
is goin' the wrong way)

We knew this was the last break 
before it was going to get fast . . .
really fast as we blazed down Hwy 210 from Thomson to Fon DuLac
We rode 4hrs and 30 minutes, to race for 5 miles
We'll just say it ended "in a draw," with all riders giving 100%

After Sunday's Massive Effort,
Monday was subdued;
Just five guys riding their

Rich's new bike with fat tires, fenders a cushy seat, 3-speeds and a basket with
flowers . . . perfect for those gravel
road rides!