Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pereira First Impressions & Weasel Confirmed on the Woodinville Permanent

First pic of my new Pereira Randonneuse.

A small farmer who supports unionized electrical workers. Nice to see.

Wiki photo of a weasel.  Remember my post about my Oregon Randonneurs 400k brevet last year wondering what it was I'd run over? In the subsequent post I hypothesized I'd run over a weasel in the middle of the night.

No, I didn't run this little fella over. I came upon him as roadkill. As soon as I saw him I remembered my pal from that 400k. It got me thinking: I'll bet it was a weasel.

Then I looked just off the road from the carcass, and spied this burrow. Aha! The habitat we were riding through at the time was tall grasses just like this, though not as hilly. I feel quite certain now it was a weasel, by gum! See how some of the soil is moist, but the carcass seemed not so moist? I wonder if the mate is still inhabiting that burrow? Poor mourning mate!

Here, my new ride is parked against the barbed wire fence at the top end of a long driveway into a place I used to fish for Steelhead along the Skykomish River.

It was called "Two Bits" for years since the farm owners had a heavy steel lockbox with a sign that said "25 Cents". The deal was you put your quarter in the box, opened the gate and drove your (hopefully, or you were likely to get stuck) four-wheel drive vehicle through, and closed the gate behind you. The owner sold the place and the new owner...you guessed it, raised the price to fifty cents or a buck. That was many years ago. I was tempted to inspect and see whether one could still get in, and if so at what cost, but the large, pit bullish dog put me off this trip. A little too exposed on my new one-wheel drive vehicle.

This is a view from the bridge crossing the Sky at Sultan, just upstream from Two Bits. I used to spend a lot of weekends crawling around these parts.

So how was the new Pereira? Fabulous. I'll be giving more reports soon, but it is a joy. Just one note for now. I really never was comfortable descending on my old Fuji. I'd always felt like I was riding on top of it rather than down in it. On the Pereira with the geometry matched to my rather odd body geometry (legs too long or torso too short), wide 650B tires, and a proper trail to match the tires, it was a delight to descend! I felt stuck to the road. Oh my, what a difference. But there is so much more to tell in future posts.

All of this took place on the Woodinville-Granite Falls-Woodinville Permanent, RUSA #0359, a Permanent organized by Geoff Swarts. Great route, Geoff. Thanks much!

Here is the route.

Here is the elevation profile. See those descents? I passed one cyclist who was coming up as I was descending and he yelled out "Yippee" as I passed because it must have been obvious how much fun I was having! I was yelling "Weeeeeeee" myself.

Keep it carving,


Sunday, June 20, 2010

First Wheel, a Finicky CycloComputer & a Feast for Fathers!

Grandpa Jay, DartreDame's Father or "GJ" as I call him, holding my first ever hand-built wheel. This wheel is not for my new bike but rather for a commuter fixie. My earlier post on my inauspicious wheelbuilding beginning can be found here.

Dartre's mother Maya, or AmmaMaya as I call her, holding my wireless cyclocomputer. It took me a long time to figure out how to measure the kilometers for each leg without resetting the trip distance. Whew!

But it wasn't all bicycling this Fathers' Day. We Fathers--GJ, SingingCyclist's Dad Alan, and I--were treated to this fabulous Indian dinner. Can't quite make out the dishes? How about a close-up?

Peas and Mushrooms. Yum!

AmmaMaya's Special Eggplant & Yogurt. Scrumptious!

Dartre's Potato Concoction: Sukhi Aloo (Potatoes roasted with Garlic, Ginger, Turmeric, Cumin, Coriander, Fennel, Chili Powder, and Oil). Delectable!

Salmon Molee. Heavenly!

Saffron Biryani with Cashews and Raisins. Texturalicious!

Tomato and Cucumber Salad. Simply cleansing!





Janak, the SingingCyclist

Keep it spicy,