Dry pavement

One of our first casual rides of the year, in which we leave without a destination and find our way home at our leisure, because it’s not that cold out any more.  On the heels of a snowfall record is a sunny 50F degree day.  Dry pavement abounds, bordered by snowbanks and dotted with isolated puddles reflecting evening light.  We’re back to riding normal tires again; Lael’s got 26 x 2.0 Schwalbe Big Apples and I’m on a worn out Schwalbe Marathon and and old Continental Top Touring tire.  Tires, like sleeping bags are highly personal and infinitely fascinating to me.  I’ve used many sleeping bags and many more tires.  It’s nice to wear normal shoes again, and to ride on dry pavement without the chatter of studs.  As the snow melts, dirt and gravel are left as ashes in it’s place.  Sidewalks and shoulders are uninspiring moist dirt paths for now.

We use this ride as a planning session for the near future and and are satisfied that making plans while riding bikes in the amber light of the falling sun is appropriate inspiration for we have in store.

6 thoughts on “Dry pavement

    • Ryan, I acquired it in exchange for a box full of used parts at Recycled Cycles about four years ago, before our first trip. I purchased the Carradice Lowsaddle Longflap that is on the Stumpjumper from Peter White at that time, and Lael toured from Maine to Montreal and south to Key West on her beloved 1980 Bianchi with these small bags. I was carrying a few of her bulky items, but she was travelling without panniers before the rest of us. In KW, she purchased her LHT and some racks and panniers. The LHT has since done things the Bianchi never could have done, but her on-pavement riding pleasure was quite high on that first trip. The next time around she’s commited to doing it without rack and panniers. Her personal packing list is already perfect for rackless touring, but panniers were the convenient choice when she flew out to meet me on the Divide. Btw, the Tubus Cargo and Jandd Hurricane panniers are an unbeatable combo, for a rack and pannier setup– they don’t rattle at all. The Hurricane panniers have the best attachment I’ve seen.

      The Brooks holdall is fine. I’m using it to house my new camera on the bike, and some assorted daily items. It’s not the best at anything, although I prefer the leather attachment to modern QR handlebar bags. For rough roads, the attachment is better than a bar bag supported by a rack, like my Ostrich bag.

  1. Hey Sean, It was 50F today for the first time this year. I’m pretty excited about having a proper camera, although it’s hard to beat the portability, accessibility, and subtlety of the iPod Touch. There are instances that I would capture with the pocketable iPod that I don’t get with the real camera. I’m trying to familiarize myself, so that it becomes really comfortable. Also, I’m learning to operate the new camera while riding, which is something I love to do. You would be surprised how many winter riding photos were taken while riding. Imagine: I am right handed and wield the iPod in my right hand, drawn from the right pocket. The left hand controls the front brake and on tight singletrack and loose snow, it’s a bit precarious. Somehow, I only ate snow on a few occasions.

    I’ve heard 70F degrees in Seattle.. Everyone in AK goes to Seattle. I joke that it’s the biggest city in Alaska.

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