Clear/Fog

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The day begins with no more than a few degrees, and a little bit of moisture in the air.  We ride out to Kincaid Park to volunteer for the Ski for Women, where Lael will lead a brief yoga session before the event.  The morning is crisp and cold.  Although we are in a hurry– “nine miles, pedal!”– it is a good morning to be out of bed.

Packing her new yoga mat, and three sandwiches for myself, we ride out to the edge of Anchorage.

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For 15 minutes of this.  Ski for Women is a well-attended group ski event that raises money for women’s causes.  Most of it isn’t a race.

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After, we explore some of the Kincaid singletrack trails, after weeks of warm weather, sun exposure, and dog walkers.

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In some places, the snow is completely gone.  Elsewhere, bumpy glare ice presents a challenge to the non-studded.

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We turn back, as the trail becomes heavily potholed with the tracks of dog walkers and moose.  Deep frozen potholes are no fun.  We connect with the Coastal Trail to ride back into town the long way.

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The crispness has taken most of the moisture out of the air, depositing it on everything. 

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Until, the moisture returns.  Suddenly, we are in a fog.

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A reminder that our proximity to the ocean is not great, despite several hundred miles to the deep blue water.  Cook Inlet moderates the weather patterns in Anchorage.

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As most of the snow has melted, we cross Westchester Lagoon on glare ice and crust.

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Another task not suited for the non-studded.  Actually, the light coating of crystalline hoar frost provides better traction than the wet ice common when temperatures are above freezing.

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Still, studs are better.  She’s got ’em.  I don’t, yet.  A pack of Grip Studs are waiting for my tires, as are a pair of 29×2.35″ 45 NRTH Nicotine tires for the ECR.

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As we near home, the clearing begins.  This kind of weather comes and goes in Anchorage.

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5 thoughts on “Clear/Fog

  1. So how thick is the ice riding across that lagoon with the warm temps you’ve been having? I just finished building a Pug but all we have right now is frozen snow. I can’t wait for some fresh stuff!

    • Jeff, The ice remains from before the melt. It has been a week since returning to cold temperatures, If I had to guess, I’d say the ice was about 2 feet thick, but i really have no idea. The lagoon is shallow, and one section is commonly maintained and used as a public skating area in winter.

      Surely you didn’t get a Pugsley to wait for good snow? Such a bike will happily subsist on frozen snow, sand, and mud. But yes, it does love a heaping plate of good snow. I’m still hoping for some this winter.

      • I had it out last night on frozen snow. It was great, but I do look forward to some fresh powder, I love laying first tracks! A storm is moving in for Thursday so I might just get lucky.

    • I haven’t heard anything, nor have I been listening very closely. Right now, my attention is focused on a hardtail with Velocity Dually rims and 2.3-3.0″ tires, although the 3.0″ might not be my actual target. Something like the Maxxis Minion 29×2.5″ entices me. The resultant combination with the Dually should be really nice, similar to the DW, and with all the positive qualities of a tire made by Maxxis, including a solid tubeless interface.

      However, I haven’t been able to make any decisions about suspension forks. There are rumors of a new fat suspension fork from Rock Shox. Other choices include current Fox and RockShox forks, the new Carver fat fork, an older Maverick; and the expensive options, the German Flame and the X-Fusion. The Rock Shox fat fork could be the winner if it ever happens.

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