Thursday, July 31, 2008

Crashed hard...still fun

Single track mountain biking..
Two friends from work and I rode the Amity Creek area after work today. There is some really cool stuff up there. A little bit of everything....long steep hills...short hills...narrow wide camber...roots...very close to some steep drops...creek crossings...things I am forgetting. Fun stuff if you ride within your ability and that's where I may have over stepped it today. It was still fun. I took a couple spills with the last one being a work of art...I mean I went down hard. I got a little out of rhythm...crossed up..and down I went on a downhill rock section. Took a nasty spill. Could of looked like gymnastics gone wrong for a second....second thought, it wasn't gymnastics gone wrong, but more like being body slammed in all star wrestling. I have some battle scars to prove it. I wasn't the only to crash though. We rode about 1hr 45mins. It was a very hard ride for me, good work out and I will feel it later.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Family fun

No pictures tonight...but did an 8+ mile ride with my daughter and brother-in-law. It was fun to get out on a quiet, peaceful road with good have the wind at our backs on the way home. Hope to get a few more of the family to join in the fun. The sooner...the better.
PS..I wanted to take pictures, but was denied. Next time.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

New B.O.B.

We bought this trailer so that we could do some bike trips. It is a B.O.B Yak Plus trailer. We purchased it from REI. The trailer weighs in at 14lbs with the dry sack and is rated to haul 70lbs. I loaded it with 42lbs of stuff and headed for home from the cabin today. That amounted to 56 extra pounds on the way home. It went down the road well, but when hills come along, you know it is back there. Actually you know it's there all the time, but it is not bad...I think it pulls extremely well. I did make it home with out getting into the granny...I think that is just because there is a stigma about riding the granny. I can see already that will have to change. I WILL be riding that granny gear. I would catch myself today mashing the pedals and then I would downshift to where I should have been riding. I took a different route home than I rode down. The route home took in 8 miles of very rough road so that I could avoid most of the state highway riding. I took it very easy on those sections...I always do, so as to not beat up the bike. Even with taking it easy on those sections, I averaged 15.1 mph. I thought that was good, as for carrying 56 extra pounds, although there wasn't much wind today and that helps. I also noticed that with the trailer on, the autos gave me much more room...THAT is nice. It took me 2 hours 15 minutes of ride time at 34 miles, with a short rest at this canoe landing. The rest stop was so I could look like I was touring...maybe???
Highway K canoe landing on the Namekagon river.

To the cabin

I rode the OCR3 to the cabin this evening. I brought the camera along but did not take any pictures. I knew I wouldn't when I left the house. It was getting late and I knew I would be riding against the wind and into the sun for about 8 miles, with some of it on state highway 77. I am never too comfortable riding into the sun and not fond of the wind either, although that is a fact of cycling so get use to it. The cars that are coming from behind you can't see any better than you can....maybe worse because of glare and dirty I knew when I left the house that I wouldn't be taking it easy. I ended up riding a little over 31 miles in 1:39. It was a fun ride. Once I leave 77, it is about 7.5 miles left to the cabin. When I leave that highway and on to the country roads that surround the cabin, a calm comes over me and it gets hard to ride too hard then. It is a feeling like being home...relaxation...hard to explain.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Did not do any riding today...but I did get some maintenance done. I usually go over the chain after every ride, so that's good to go most of the time. Tonight I went thru the pedals and all the cables. Bottom bracket felt tight. Trying to figure out a noise I have developed on the last two rides. I am hoping the pedal work will quiet the noise.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Playing in the sand

I went for a 12 mile mountain bike ride on the Anthem this evening. I did not leave the house until 8 pm. The trails I ended up riding were mostly sand...some of it Ore 2 Shore sand....meaning deep and soft. I find for me it really isn't too bad, if I can keep my speed up with a high cadence and also try to keep my weight to the rear of the bike. Got back to the house just before dark. There were a lot of deer out tonight and some of them were bucks. I also saw bear tracks, sow and a cub. The tracks were in the soft sand and looked fresh. I tried to get a picture of them but because of it being late, the flash made the sand look flat. Nice thing about seeing bear tracks...that is where they were, not where they are...right????Shadows are long this time of day.

A deer stand I rode by.

Sandy hill and corner.

More sand

Any time spent on the bike, even if it is on sand, is G R E A T ! ! !

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Party ride

I rode the OCR3 road bike to the family party today because Janice was there early to set up. This way I got in a nice ride and did not have to be there so early. I rode 43 miles with the last 6 being in rain and strong winds. I left Pattison Park, where we are camping, and rode west on county road B. Turned right on county W and then left on to county C. I then rode to the MN state line and on in to Wrenshall MN. I rode the bicycle trail into Carlton and on to Thompson and then down through Jay Cooke State Park. That is when the rain and the wind started. The skinny smooth tires on the road bike helps get it a little squirrely in the rain at 40 mph. I came out at Fond du Lac and then rode to Gary and across the bridge back in to Oliver WI where the party took place. There were several of these yellow fields along the way. You can also see the cloud bank hanging over the Lake Superior area in this photo. That cloud bank is what I ended up riding in.

Last year was a very poor hay year....this year one of the best. Go figure.

I had to ride the county W hills through the Nemadji river valley. The bad part of that is that about a mile of that is rough gravel road.

I do not know if the the grass is greener on the other side of the fence....but there is definitely a lot more grass.

Pattison Park

We had a family party in the Oliver///Superior WI area this we decided to camp at Pattison State Park. Janice and I rode 5 miles around the park this evening. Emearld Ash Borer Trap
This was set up in the park. I have seen several others in the Gordon//Barnes area.

This sign below this trap shows where to find more info.

This was our campsite...home for the weekend, although we did not have time to spend on doing the tourist thing.
We did have a fire and cooked snacks both nights.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Lots of bicycles

Janice and I rode the
Crystal Lake BATS trail??? We rode from the Crystal Lake State Park to Boulder Junction. It was a 22 Mile ride on an asphalt with some very nice scenery. It was 11 miles up to Boulder Junction and in that 11 miles, I counted 94 other bicyclist's. I did not count on the way back. Very popular trail. Most were families out enjoying the nice day. Below are some pictures from today's ride.

Close call

Did no riding today. It was a cold windy day. We went into Minocqua and did the tourist thing. When we got back to camp, I was gathering firewood. I was walking back to camp on this trail dragging firewood when I heard a crash...tree falling. The wind blew over this tree...25 feet from where I was standing...on to the trail I just walked down.

Gresham Lake ride

We are spending three nights...fourdays...camping at this campground in northern WI. about 15 miles north of the Minocqua//Woodruff area. It is a very scenic area with lots of mature trees. I put in a good 25 miles this morning. Pushing a good pace...but not snapping many pictures.
This is a large lake that I rode by this morning...Trout Lake

I was riding on the road, but this is a parking lot for a bicycling trail that I rode by. It was almost full. I will come back and ride this trail with Janice.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Hartley single track===fun

A group of five of wait....four of us, did about 2 hours of single track at Hartley Park. I think they consider that the east end of Duluth. It was some gnarly stuff. A lot of narrow trail with many exposed roots and some rocks. I have never been on trails that have that many bridges...lots of narrow, long and curvy plank bridges. Almost did an endo once...but a tree broke my fall.

Duluth is lucky to have people that not only build and maintain trails that are in existence, but also expand the single track system in the city. They have a new trail system they are "riding in" by the Piedmont area. Have not been there yet...but will be.

I did not take pictures today, but will get back there in the future and get some.

Two hours of gnarly single track with five wait four friends...can't be beat. Simply an awesome time.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Work ride

Decided to make a little longer ride today. I have a long commute to work, so my wife gave me a ride part way and then I rode the bicycle the rest of the way. Then, after work I rode home. I had to take a different way home than normal. The shorter way home is on an express I took the longer route home to avoid the heavy traffic, which was 55 the 12 in the morning....67 miles total.This is the Bong Bridge linking Duluth, MN to Superior WI. There is a nice path for bicycling, walking and etc. across this bridge. The only other bridge that connects the two cities is automobile traffic only.

This is the beach at Wisconsin's Pattison State Park. The climb from Superior up to Pattison today was difficult. It was against the wind and a steady climb for about 6 miles.

Stopped at this rest area on WI state highway 35. This was about 2 hours into the ride home. Shortly after this stop, I turned to go with the wind for 11 miles. That was nice.

My wife left the house riding her bicycle towards the direction I was coming from. We met about 7.5 miles from home.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Spooner single track

Went in to Gordon, WI. for the parade this afternoon...small town...small parade, but some of the best fireworks in the midwest. I did not stay to watch them, but have seen them many times in the past. I watched the parade to see some of my family march for the American Legion. After the parade I went to the Spooner City Park to ride some single track. It did not appear their trails have been getting much use as I saw only 3 other tracks. I spent nearly 2 hours there. My Dad

My Mother

My sister carrying a flag.

Spooner single track.

Some construction going on in the area. I had to find my way around some it.

Spooner has some hills.

This is the site of the new Spooner Area High School. This is the reason for the construction in the area.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Cabin ride...Bears

Had a 6:22 am tee time for Hidden Greens North golf course this morning. Janice and I played 18 holes. The first eight holes were in some thick fog. After we finished up golf and breakfast, I rode the Giant OCRC2 to the family cabin. It was good to ride the carbon fiber I spend most of the miles on the aluminum. I saw a small Black Bear on the ride, but was not fast enough to get a picture. I have seen 9 bear on my rides this year...although three of them were cubs. It was 31 miles into a strong headwind. It was not a very long ride, but after walking and carrying clubs for eighteen this morning and then into the wind...I did not hit it too hard.We had a cold spring and a couple of late frosts therefore the Blueberries around here are far and few between....and most are not ripe.

This is an area where there is a Red Pine planting. They come in and aerial spray it to keep the oaks, grass and deciduous from growing. Some of the chemicals they use are Accord, Accent and Garlon. It basically kills everything but the Pines and also works as a fertilizer.

Guess which way I was riding today.

Arrival at the cabin and a nice swim after.

I was going to ride home also, but being the Forth of July and in the evening, I accepted a ride.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Chippewa River State your passes

Janice and I made our way to Carryville WI to ride the Chippewa River State Recreational Trail. This trail is paved from Eau Claire to Durand and will soon connect through Eau Claire to Chippewa Falls and on to the Old Ab trail which leads north to Cornell and Brunet Island State Park. On the southern end of the trail, just short of Durand, it also connects to the Red Cedar State Park Trail. A lot of miles of nice scenery and no auto traffic to contend with. We rode from Carryville to the bridge crossing the Chippewa River and back. It was a 24 mile ride.
This is where the trail splits...right to Durand...left to Eau Claire...back to Menomonie.

Nice use for an old bridge.

Rest area along the trail.

The trail runs along the river a lot of the time.

When riding a bicycle, yield to a machine that is baling hay.

A spring that trickles down to dump into the river.

And another.

You are required to have a pass to ride the state trails in Wisconsin. It is $20.00 annually or I think $5.00 for a daily. We met this gentleman on the trail checking to see that we had one....and we did. It is money well spent....going for a great cause. This officer bears a remarkable resemblance to our oldest son.