How was your ride today? Week of March 22nd, 2010

Tell us all about your ride today. Inquiring minds want to know!

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WINDY !

Went for a casual ride to Fish Creek today, path was nice and quiet but the wind on the way back was very strong at times. A couple of times the gusts felt like they were going to blow us off our bikes! Over all it was a nice sunny day though! Rewarded ourselves with brunch at Nellies on 17 Ave SW.

Tinna

surprised

this morning's ride was pleasant and refreshing, I had mentally prepared for something ugly! we'll see what the day brings, supposed to preciptate something, rain or snow.

waiting...

...here at the kitchen table for the predicted precip to pass before heading out on my day off ride. go away sleet! planning on another MUP/road combo ride - loving the midweek riding on the MUP's - i have them all too myself.

www.bikebike.ca

Freezing Fog

Powerful wind out of the North this morning, carrying with it some freezing fog or mist. The headwind definitely highlighted my wrong glove choice this morning!

Had the advantage of some really fast rides home last week (including a rare wind-at-your-back both ways commute!) so I knew it had to be paid for some time or another :)

FAST!!!

Too fast in fact, I took the corner at 11th street and 14th Ave SW to fast and went down... Some new scuffs on the bike and raspberry on the hip and a big old hole in the shorts, but all else is good. Destroyed my keys though, the office pass card looks a lot worse for wear. I think I rolled the tire off the rim and pinched the tube as the front was flat post crash. I guess 32c CX tires aren't built for high speed cornering ;)

Please support my ride to Conquer Cancer

FAST

That is my biggest fear right now when I am riding on my road bike! I am new to a road bike this year as I am also in The Ride To Conquer Cancer. Maybe you can ease my mind a bit how easy is it to pop my tires? They feel so fragile compared to my mtn bike!

PS how did you get the link up for The Ride To Conquer Cancer? I am half way there for my minimum and getting worried!
Thanks
Tinna

Foggy Glasses.

I took it pretty easy around corners as it looked somewhat "slickery" out there. Didn't have any problems except when I stopped my glasses fogged up. Oh and slow climbs as well as sitting behind the 2 walkers on the bridge to had to be side by side.

Noticed the temp drop by Glenmore and the River Valley though.

late

headed out a bit later than usual this mornng, tired legs from a run last night, rode more casually than most days and also was staring right into the sun for most of the ride.....actually made me think it was later in the season!

Downtown to Penbrook Meadows and back

At lunchtime I rode out from downtown to Penbrook Meadows (near 52 St SE and 14 Ave SE), and then back The 10km ride took me about 30 min. each way. I rode 16 Ave on the way out (East of Deerfoot), and 14 Ave on the way back. Either one is a good route.

-------
'ride' at 'bikecalgary.org'
Bicycles aren't obstructing traffic, they're part of traffic

Penbrook/Forestlawn

19 ave is also a nice wide street and connects to the path that runs along the top of the hill, and under 17 ave. The path also connects to the sidewalk across Deerfoot/Bow river, leading to the canal and bow river pathways.

Adrenelin rush.

Coming home tonight, as I headed south towards Heritage park, I came down the hill and at the point where you turn off the road into Heritage park you go through a narrow section with the ubiqutous pole in the middle. Part of the access still has ice on it. So, I slowed down as I was turning BUT hit some gravel.

Front wheel slide!

Recovery!

WOW!

Didn't go down, didn't hit the pole, didn't hit the bush. All is good.

Nice riding this week

Mornings are not too cool, wind has diminshed to almost nothing coming home (at least compared to last week), and the ice is gone from the paths.

I just have one question: why are joggers/walkers so fascinated with using the bike path despite the fact that there is a perfectly clear path for them right next to ours? Just because the winter usage signs are still up doesn't mean they should still be using the path, especially with the increasing numbers of cyclists.

Sorry about the rant so early in the morning :-)

5 wide

They also like to run in groups 5 wide and refuse to move over for anyone. That's when comments like "keep running fatty" are made.

I won't complain though, most joggers are only out when the weather is good and I like good weather.

use with caution

Seriously, people will look but use with caution as I usually honk far in advance and people turn around which too me is the number one reason I got it so they know I am coming and either a) move a little b) grab kid or c) bring in dog closer. I always thank them as I pass as it shows respect for the move. But I am always more aware of elderly people and their lack of hearing but also their reactions and fear to quick loud noises (they think a truck is coming down the path) and one last one, unless you want a hard plastic bottle of brestmilk chucked at your head DO NOT Airblast a mother with a baby carriage! Sleep deprived moms use the pathways as the only respite to getting their kids to sleep and waking one up with your horn is a guaranteed death sentence!

Good luck with it as I gave up on bells LONG Ago.

Still a Bell User.

I use a bell, scared the snot out of a couple of joggers yesterday between Rocky View and Glenmore. As I was climbing over Glenmore I came up behind them on the path, still climbing so going slower, got a bit close and rung the bell and they figured I was THERE but I had slowed down. Anyway I apologized and we went our way.

On the pathways when there are lots of folks I slow down and dawdle behind them and I'll ring my bell. Going along pathways which have grass beside, if there are a lot of people I'll bop out and ride on the grass to get around them.

After trying to pass this

After trying to pass this tip on to some joggers on my route home (the bow river path from Downtown to Bowness), as well as telling off two cyclists on the pedestrians only path, I have started looking for a summer route that stays off the paths completely.

It's not as easy as I thought it would be. Every route so far has some combination of too many stop signs and some section where the cars don't want me such as Bowness Road between Shaganappi and 37th street.

same route

I am also riding downtown to Bowness and usually use the path system, you may however want to try crossing Memorial Drive at Sunnyside and taking 5th Ave, it has bike lanes for most of it, and not too many stops....you can also ride faster if that is a concern to you. Worth the try anyway.

The pathway's were great

The pathway's were great over the winter, but I ride too fast so I think I need to move off them until the snow starts flying again.

I've tried a bunch of things and I plan to try a bunch more. If I ever figure out a good route I'll post it here and see if anyone can improve it. I've actually already got some good ideas from this post http://bikecalgary.org/?q=node/940#comment-3299, but I'm trying to find the least obstructed and safest route.

wrong way

OK so some folks use the wrong path when it's divided... but then why do some runners insist on running in the WRONG LANE on the bike path? ie looking for a head-on interaction.

Besides the head-on, now I have to swerve into the oncoming lane which seems to be a free-for-all montage of runners, bladers, walkers, and others demonstrating cow-herd-like-wandering-skills?

Two things about "the wrong way"

1) I think they have it in their head that it's like the old thing about walking on the wrong side of the highway so you can see oncoming cars (or speeding cyclists?)

2) It is covered off in the parks bylaws - #37 of bylaw 20M2003 states

No Person using a Pathway shall travel left of the Centre Line of a Pathway except:
a) when overtaking another Person travelling in the same direction;
b) when the Pathway to the right of the Centre Line is obstructed;
c) when the Pathway to the right of the Centre Line is closed to Pathway users; or
d) when turning left off the Pathway.

It carries a specified penalty of $100 in schedule "A"

I don't know

Why are cyclists so fascinated with using the running path where there's a dual path?

(I see this LITERALLY every time I'm running on the correct part of one of the dual paths, such as the north side of the river between Edworthy and Crowdchild)

Touché

Touché Mike, and your point is well-taken - generalizations are a bad idea. Let's not lump all runners in together, and cyclists neither.

When I run with friends, there's always a tendency to all ride side by each so no one is left out of the conversation (half the fun of running, dontcha know), and often I have to remind one or more of us to double up instead so we leave room for the cyclists - those damn guys that come racing up out of nowhere in a big f^&*ing hurry. (And I say that as someone who rode his bike about 350 days last year).

Downtown to Weasel Head to Fish Creek to Lake Sikome

Rode this route on the way home last night with no problems except for one stretch; It’s just before the bridge, paralleling on the north side of the hill on the south side of the Weasel Head park. Not a big deal it’s only about 20m of slush and ice that hasn’t melted. I was on my road bike so I decided to walk the short distance. Other than that Fish Creek Park is clear and 99% dry with no ice. There’s a small section of gravel where construction crews have ripped up the path just before approaching the Ranche.
It’s probably the earliest I can remember this route being open for a road bike ride the entire distance. The distance is about 33km.

sweet!

i am hoping to do that ride next week.

that loop (edworthy -> weaselhead -> fish creek -> back to edworthy) is probably my favorite ride in the city. you can do it on a roadbike and stick to the pathways, you can do it on an MTB and link together singletrack, or you can do it with a picnic basket and wine too!

next week will probably find me on the fixed gear - love the early season fixed rides - make me strong like ox!

www.bikebike.ca

Bike Racks Gone!

Instead of firing up ~1500kg of automobile to carry my ~90kg self to the video store at Dalhousie Stn to return a movie I decided to hop on my bike and ride. I'd done it many times before and the bike racks outside the store made it really simple. Thus, I was quite surprised when I got there and noticed the bike racks had been taken out! I asked the girl at Roger's why they took them out and she said they didn't do it but that she figured it was the new guys moving into the old Sport Mart location. I half-figured she was probably thinking to herself "...because no one rides their bikes here anyway..." but just then two younger kids rode their bikes up, leaned them against the window and locked them together. I saw it as just another example of how no one really wants to think of an alternative to driving. Doesn't the City have some bylaw regarding bike racks being required?

VERY Good Point on Alternatives for Bike Parking - GoGreen Expo

Here's the very friendly response I got for this weekends Go-Green Expo. There Website mentioned car parking .... but not secure BIKE parking. I thought that was very polite to get an answer back.

_____________________________________________________________________________________
Hi!
Bike racks can be found near the north entrance from Lot 10 to the BMO Centre and in the courtyard by the exterior doors to The Green Expo.

Enjoy the show!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: Vince Roberts [mailto:vprober@live.com]
Sent: Saturday, March 20, 2010 8:32 PM
To: Janet white; Vince
Subject: Parking for e-Bikes @ the Calgary GoGreen Expo

Gooda',
It might be a slight oversight on your Website ..... especially since one of your exhibitors is a Calgary's e-Bike store ..... but you only mention CAR parking in the drop down menu. Where do I park my Bike (e-Bike) securely please .... otherwise I'm left to catching a taxi to an event I'm hoping is a very good GoGreen Expo.

Thanks in advance for your help.

It was

It was grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr... rrr... eat !
Darn cold both in the morning and even more so on the return.
Geee...

I apologize.

To eveyone in advance should I "hit them". :).

Unfortunately (at least I think so), when the weather gets cooler the consistency of said expectorate is thicker than in warm weather which sometimes results in things leaving at a lower velocity and not clearing my shoulder or mustache. I need to wash my jacket :(.

But, on the pathways I generally look, on the road, if I'm in a group I swing wide and wait till I'm at the back.

I'm one of those people who get a real runny nose when whem I'm out exercising.

Farmers Blow.

My comments were really about a farmers blow, not spitting although there are times that happens as well, but not often and I do check.

Oh, and for those not familiar, a "farmers blow" is holding one nostril closed and then forcefully exhaling through the other to push all the mucous out. When done properly, it'll sail off to the side. When done improperly it'll hit the side of your face or jacket :(.

I suppose my 25 year career

I suppose my 25 year career in clinical microbiolgy has just trained me to think that sharing the numerous microorganisms of my mucous membranes with the public is generally unsanitary....just sayin'.......in case you're wondering, I really don't care if you do it, I just don't get it. And when I see a hard body hot guy doing it, the image is totally shattered......maybe it's a girl vs guy thing. Maybe snot blowing (or the Saskatchewan hankie as some call it)is like grunting in a man's world???? Perhaps it equates to pawing the dirt or fanning your tail feathers! (ok, I really hope you are getting my humour!)

I do in fact "get it" and I appreciate . . .

Other forums would have us degenerating into less civil responses I'm sure.

Like all of our attitudes, they are formed over many years due to many influences. In my case, my father was a servere asthmatic who eventually died from an asthma attack and he frequently found that he excess mucus to deal with and thus, in my case (and well lets face it, from a guy perspective), spitting became "normal". There are times I also suffer from a weird condition where I can't swallow (I think it is a type of prolapse) and until I get over it, all of the liquod that we normally swallow just gathers up and the only option I have is to spit. I agree, it is gross but there it is.

Still, the above doesn't absolve me from what happens when I'm riding.

I guess I could equate your feeling to when I see a hard body hot girl lighting up a cigarette. I don't know whether to laugh, feel pity or what but I find it REALLY puts me off. Yet some 40 years ago I could (and did) light up at my desk during the day at the office.

Oh and my older Sister hits me if I spit around her which all in all means I do it very little.

OK, onto the real world of cycling. The more of us that do it (nasty habits whatever they may be), the better it is.

yikes

Did that once accidentally... I was going very much above the posted speed limit (yeah yeah...), and some dude caught up (which I didn't know) and was catching a free ride in the draft. Didn't move around me or in any way let me know they were there.... being blessed with highly active noserunning I had to "let fly" and accidentally baptized them. My bad... now I look before blowing.

That said, if you're going to draft/wheelsuck either let the people know or make your time back there short (ie move on, or share the pull). Applies to paths and road riding.

Also look at the oncoming lane so they don't have to pass through your germ-cloud.

Headwind southbound on the Nose Creek Pathway

I struggled to get over 20 km/hr this morning heading from Sandstone to the Zoo but one I started West from the Zoo to downtown I was able to get up 30 km/hr in places. It was nippy out and my fingers and toes were cool.

Can anyone recommend warm, windproof and breathable gloves for under $50 that are good to about -5C or -10c?

I have 8 different pairs of

I have 8 different pairs of mitts and gloves that I wear depending on the weather. All (with the exception of my standard summer cycling glover) purchased at MEC. The trick is to layer them since it is almost always too warm for the same hand gear at the end of the day compared to the start, or at least I find this to be the case until summer weather arrives.

From the hand out I have

Thin liner gloves $5 http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524...

Black Diamond Thicker liner gloves $14 http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524...

Planet Bike Spring cycling glove $26 http://www.mec.ca/Products/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524...

Thin Fleece mittens approx $5

Thin Fleece mittens approx $5

Thick Fleece mittens approx $15

Gortex Shell Mittens (couldn't find the price).

From -15 to +5 I use various combinations of these as follows:

+5 to 0 Planet Bike gloves. They are great since the pinky and ring fingers are not separated, so they stay a little warmer. And they have a reinforced palm so they won't wear out as fast.

0 to -5 Add in the thin liners (although I was a little cold this morning at -5).

-5 to -7 Use the thick liners instead.

After that I add one of two pairs of the thin fleece mitts over top which gets me to -15 pretty comfortably. The nice thing is that in the evening I can easily toss the liners and mitts in a pocket and I barely even know they are there.

It's not windproof but I find it's not a problem for me. I only break out the gortex covers for -20 to -35.

2 basic styles with offshoots.

HAND WEAR:
I have my basic "long finger" gloves that I wear from about -7 to +5 or 6.

Below that I have a pair of heavier long finger gloves.

I then switch to fingerless gloves above about that temperature and have about 4 pair I think.

FOOT WEAR:
1) Cycling shoes with cleats (SPD) for above freezing. Note that the inside metal plate has 2 layers of black electrician tape over it for insulation.
- light socks above about +15. Otherwise nice thick warm woolies below that.
2) Same shoes with neoprene booties down to about -8 to -10.
3) MEC winter boots (with cleats) for below that.

These days I ride in with cooler weather stuff and carry fingerless gloves. On the way home I take the booties off and switch gloves.

Imelda

My daughter in law posted a question on Facebook. "Do you think 10 pairs of shoes are too many for a 5 day trip?".

Then I got thinking, I have:
1) 5 pairs of cycling shoes. 1 old and 1 new pair for each set of cleats and likely getting a new pair of road shoes plus a cold weather set.

2) 2 pair of hiking boots. 1 backpacking, 1 light hiking.

3) 2 pair of casual shoes.

4) 3 pairs of sandles.

5) Geez, lets see, 4 to 5 pair of dress shoes for work including a pair I keep here.

6) A pair of workout shoes for the gym.

7) Only 1 pair of slippers.

8) Oh, 4 pair of motorcycle boots (1 old, 1 racing, 1 newer) plus casual.

9) Real thick winter boots I've only ever worn once.

Add them all up and I have, unbelievably, TWENTY-FOUR pairs of footwear.

Now, I guess I need 24 bikes and I only have 4 :).

Line up for showers

Comments were made on last week's Forum Topic about the number of cyclists back out on the paths / roads with the return of the nice weather.

I had the first three days this week in the auto due to out of office meetings, but saw several bikes “piled-up” in front of our offices each day.

Anyway, being my first ride this week and being slower I had to wait for a shower and upon entering had to endure a cooler H2O temperature.

We will now be having bicycle races to work in the morning to get the warm/hot water!

I'm coming in earlier.

I find that if I'm in the office by about 7:30 I beat most of the other commuters. I come into my office, do a few emails and cool down (after a nice climb I need a few minutes cool down), then hit the showers so I'm out before 8:00.

Once the sun figures out how to get up earlier I'll probably join it and be in by 7:00 but I need light by 6:00 to do that. Then I'll shower before 7:30 and should be beating the crowd still.

Critical Mass = New Bike Infrasrtucture

In my previous post I mention bikes "piled-up" in front of our offices each day.

I guess we have got Critical Mass now at my work because our senior management has put the call out for proper bike racks to be installed, finally!

Either that or the old guys just don't like all the bikes secured to sign or light posts, picnic tables, etc.

If you work in Dome or Home

If you work in Dome or Home towers, March 30-31 are the days to rent your cage spot. Go to the 3rd floor of the Lancaster Building to an unoccupied spot just as you get to the top of the stairs. If you come via the +30, its at the end of the hallway. $100 cash or cheque only.

c.o.p

Went for a ride after work with friends, started by Marlborough mall area and went to C.O.P. The weather turned out to be a very pleasant evening getting warmer as the ride went on. I have to say it feels so good to get out and get some fresh air and exercise after being cooped up in an office all day!

Please support my ride to Conquer Cancer
TINA

Decided to take a day off

Decided to take a day off today as I was feeling tired and fatigued. Nothing wrong with taking a break and giving the old body a chance to recover. Lord willing, I will be back on the bike Monday morning going to work.

Enjoy your day off! I no

Enjoy your day off! I no longer have that luxury. In order to go from 2 to 3 bicycles (done last week) I have committed myself to riding the rest of the year since I have no money left over for the bus.

bikes are cheaper

If you just compare spending on bikes vs. transit passes you may be tempted to say that transit is cheaper. But that's not the whole story. When you ride to work, you get a free exercise program thrown in. So that's worth $60x12 = $720 credit. And also, how can you quantify the mental health benefits that come from experiencing the freedom of riding a bike versus being one of the thousands of bodies enduring the transit system or being one of the multitude of motorists hating being stuck in traffic?

The way I see it, riding a bike is a huge bargain. When people ask me "how can you ride a bike?", I answer "how can you not?".

joggers in the dark

Last night I was heading from Bridgeland to Sunnyside in the falling dark on the north-side river pathway. Ahead of me I discerned three people walking or jogging. As I got a little closer it seemed evident they were walking or jogging (I don't remember which) three abreast, taking up the entire width of the pathway. I called out "Bike!" about 20m back. No reaction. At 10m out, I again called "Bike!", louder. No reaction. Finally at about 5m it becomes evident I'll have to stop and possibly go around them, and I'm a bit frustrated at having to disrupt my ride. I yell "Bike!" one last time and the three of them all startle... but don't move off the pathway. I stop and then slowly move between them. One of them says "sorry!" and I can pick up what sounds like a Japanese accent. It immediately occurs to me that it's possible that they are not local residents being ignorant, but instead three female tourists from abroad who are not familiar with our pathway operation. I am immediately able to cast off any irritation and instead show some compassion, and I say "no problem!" as I roll on past them, adding "walk on the right, please".

The lesson for me here is that we can't assume that all pathway users actually know what they're doing. If they're causing a conflict, it may not be intentional.

joggers, a blight on the pathways

rode in from silver springs this morning along the MUP's to my shop and between Edworthy and Crowchild saw no less than 30 joggers on the bike path that should have been on the running/walking path close to the river.

saw exactly ZERO cyclists on the walking path.

...would love to see more education/enforcement being applied to the jogging/walking MUP users. of course, its much easier to simply ticket bike riders instead.

wwww.bikebike.ca

Pathway is still mixed use

I rode along there yesterday and confirm large numbers of walkers, dogs, joggers etc on the pathway. Given that I had the wind at my back and could maintain good speed without pedalling I didn't mind too much and slowed down for them all, although I did wish that I had just stayed on Memorial Drive. I was going to complain, however I noted that the City still has the seasonal mixed use signs up, so I think that they were all entitled to be there.

very nice ride

It was so windy at one point today I was riding down a steep grade pedalling hard and going about 15 kph. Small gravel was flying into my face.

But the ride home was hero worthy.

Via the #1 and Airport

Wow, I felt pathetic heading out later in the afternoon. The climb up that little hill before turning to Cochrane almost made want to turn around I was going so slowly. The leg on 22, was almost as bad as keeping the bike steady was great workout for the arms and brain. The 1A certainly made up for it.

Bob G.

“Bicycling is a big part of the future. It has to be. There’s something wrong with a society that drives a car to workout in a gym.” – Bill Nye, the Science Guy

bikes@bowcycle.com
www.bowcycle.com