Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Looking forward

We are getting blessed with an early spring here in Up North Wisco, but with that comes forest fire danger.  There is an old saying "Drier than a popcorn fart."  I do not know where that come from, but have heard it many times.  We have still been riding, although we have had some trials and tribulations...another broken spoke on the road tandem and throw in some wind to test the fortitude.

Looking forward to tomorrow...A nice long gravel ride, which by the way is right in CAD's wheelhouse...area of expertise, a particular skill the dictionary says...but he couldn't make it.  I can't blame him, as it would involve taking a vacation day, making a long drive, plus he would have to wait for me all the turns and stop signs.  We will get a group together sometime this summer for a gravel ramble...guaranteed! ! !

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Freshly Graded

We had 5 people for the Wednesday after work ride this week.  That was good considering it was a whopping 37 degrees in Duluth when we left on the ride.  Five hardy people made a 33+ mile ride and it was great.

Thursday night had me riding the gravel roads near home on the cross bike.  I knew they had just been graded and figured that it would just enhance the ride...it did.  The temp was around the 70 mark and it was a 20 mile loop...mostly freshly graded gravel and sand.
I ain't a tellin no lie when I tells ya "It was rough".  The review on the cross bike wheels were not good, but I trued them when I got them and beat the hell out of them tonight...and verdict is...still true.  They can't be all bad.

About 5 miles of tonights route had only one track down the road, and you could not even see that track most of the time.  This section of road was a bit soft.  As I said though, I knew what I was getting into when I left the house...and I will add...it was still fun.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Happy Birthday Daddy's Girl

I want to wish my daughter a very Happy Birthday today.  She is very special and I  LOVE  her dearly.  This is her and some paintings she has made.

Very Nice

She has natural mountain biking ability.  I really think she will be spending more time on the bike this year.

Small print...I did not have her permission for any of this.  I hope she will forgive me. :-)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Long Way Home

I took a long ride home from the cabin and it was a work out to say the least.
For the most part, this route had a lot of nice country roads to ride.  My parents honeymooned near here at my Great Aunt's place on Long Lake.

Nice golf course. 

This is a cemetary where some of my ancestors are buried.  Among them are my Great and Great Great Grandparents.  Notice the flag...It was 63 miles of fighting the wind most of the ride.  Still, another metric century in is good.  Should get extra credit considering the wind.

This is a marker on Great Great Grandpa Love's grave.  He was injured during the civil war.  I remember visiting here with my grandparents. 

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Cabin Riding

We headed to our family cabin for the weekend.  A good time was had and as an added bonus, bicycling was an activity we enjoyed.  I rode down Friday after work with a wind working with me for a majority of the time.  There were a few times I fought the wind, but for the most part it was good.  I made the near 31 miles in 1 hour 35 minutes, which is good time for me.
Saturday had Janice, myself and Sarah doing a training ride for this years MS150 ride.
This will be Sarah's first year riding the MS150 and really, her first year doing some serious riding.  We are looking forward to getting in some quality ride time with her.
When we lined up for the picture, my mother and sister came from the cabin with a sign for us to hold.  They are our biggest supporters of just about anything we get ourselves into...including jumping into Lake Superior in February.  If there is anybody out there that would like to join us on this years MS ride, please feel free to become a member of our team....Gitchigumi Gear Mashers...or donate if you so choose.

Our daughter Lisa found and moved this little critter to a safer spot.  The loons were making noise...some mallards were around...Turkeys came through the yard...Too many geese were around...Frogs were making a lot of noise...All of this, plus being with family, equals a quality weekend.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Riding the Gravel

After 65 miles the day before with Janice on the tandem, I was on my own the next day.  With the temp around 70 and clear blue sky above, I decided a gravel ride was called for.  It was 29 miles and the conditions could not have been much better for riding on the roads I was on.

I was on some roads west of Gordon WI.  This particular road, The Crottie Brook Trail, is maintained by, and goes through sections of three townships. Gordon, Wascott and Dairyland.
About a mile in on the Crottie, is the last sign of civilization...a nice cabin.
I think a lot of logging took place back in here this last winter.
I stopped once by one of the old logging jobs and snacked.
They close some of these roads in the spring to prevent damage from the wet conditions.
I had a few miles of riding in the ruts.  The ruts in the road make it interesting.  You try to find the driest, best rut and then try to stay upright...hasn't been a problem yet.  You wouldn't want trouble out here because you are on your own.  It is miles to the nearest resident, and no cell phone service...and as an added bonus, I saw no cars on the gravel today.
This the other end of the road with the road closed sign...doesn't do much good to close one end and not the other:-)
One of the bridges I crossed.

As I said before, 29 miles of just excellent gravel riding.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Metric Tandem

Janice and I had some errands to do today, so we got up early and got those things done so we could ride this afternoon.  We left the house shortly after noon on the mountain tandem and rode the YMT ride for a total of slightly over 65 miles.  We had rode about 4 miles before the first layer came off at the St. Croix River.

I have always liked riding on Highway M.  It is straight, very little traffic, but today the wind was straight at us...10 miles of it.
Tamarack river on the Sweedish Highway

We ate chocolate chip cookies here on the St Croix river that our future daughter had made and delivered to us this weekend.  I do like chocolate..probably too much.

Another shot of the Tamarack

As I said before, we got our Metric Century in easily, even with this bike that with gear today weighed in at 75 pounds.  One good thing about this ride today...Very little traffic.  We had one stretch of more than 12 miles with no vehicles.  Janice was a good sport...she wants to do another tomorrow...OK, maybe not.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Wind Down Ride

Janice and I went for an end of the work week wind down ride this evening.  We rode the small circle of 11 miles with a temp around the +60 mark, which was nice for this time of year. 

I commented on Old Fool about his post with the gardening he does...looks to me he has a green thumb.  We have a lot of this in our region...SAND.  This works great for gardening Red Pine, Jack Pine and the like, but vegetables are a little more difficult. 

A little pond we rode by.

Janice and I a standin' in the sand.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

After Work Ride

Well, another after work ride in the books.  There were only four of us tonight and three of them were hammers whom beat up on the old guy...me.  We got in 33 miles with the temp just around +40F.  We hope to have more people next week and again, just as last week, it was a lot of fun.  Janice and I hope to get some riding in this weekend.  She won't be mean to the old guy...lol:-)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Wednesday Ride

Anyone interested???  We are doing another Wednesday ride beginning at 3:15 from the corner of Central and Raleigh in West Duluth. 

Just a good time.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Windy Tandem

Temperature in our neck of the woods reached near 60 today, but the wind was present and accounted for.  Very strong wind from the WSW didn't stop us from getting out on the tandem.  We rode a 21 mile loop with little traffic.  I told Janice when we left the house that the wind would play a factor in the last 4 miles and it did not disappoint...have I mentioned the wind yet?  Yeah, I thought so.  It is good fun to get out and ride as a couple. 

One more sure sign of spring...first Black Bear of the season in the yard tonight, a sow and a 1 year old cub.  I think they are looking to trash the bird feeders.