Friday, May 20, 2011

Successful Bike to Work Week

Ready for the rain
This was a good week for me on the bike and saving gas money. I decided since I have been riding to work once a week now for the last month that I would add an extra day since it was bike to work week. Both rides were good, the threat of rain was always there but I never got hit by more than a couple of drops. I was certainly prepared for it as you can see in the picture.

Today was a little interesting, I got started just after 6 am and there was a nice chill in the air. About 4 miles into my ride I was cruising down a little hill and just starting to feel good when an ever familiar sound of psst, psst, psst, psst, psst, ding, ding, ding followed a loud metal on metal bang. This was caused by a screw going straight through my tire, outer and inner walls of the tube and poking a hole into the rim of my wheel (see picture). Needless to say this caused another insta-flat for me this week and my rim suffered enough damage that it will be joining my other trashed rim (see Tuesday blog post) in the garbage can. The tire gods are very angry at me for some reason. Must be something to do with the end of the world tomorrow.
Screwed by a screw

The last part of my ride into work is all paved trails for 5 or 6 miles. I don't really mind traffic but I do like it when I finally hit the trails. Today however everyone was riding into work (last day of bike to work week) and while I think this is awesome to see, I think it can make the trails more dangerous then the roads. Here is a familiar scenario, the trail is about 6 feet wide with a line in the middle to separate the different directions, road rules apply, always stay to the right except when passing. Well when you have multiple people riding at different speeds and people need to pass they sometimes have to cross the middle line and those on the opposing side can also be in a situation where they need to pass. I just get a little nervous sometimes when I always expect people on the opposing side to move to the right after passing but sometimes you see them twitch to the left and then commit to the right.

One other cool thing about the ride is that my final hill is actually categorized, at least by standards, as a 5. A category 5 is the lowest categorization and it goes up to 1 and then there are also above category climbs but DC surely doesn't have any of those. My route is pictured below without the elevation chart. 

Anyway on the way back home I was able to enjoy the tail wind that was the head wind I faced on the way in this morning. I was also able to latch onto a Honda CR-V for some motorpacing for about a mile or so.

Today I was a little tired after riding 4 days in a row but I am hoping my body will respond by resurrecting the lungs and legs that used to be able to move a bike pretty fast.

My route to work, click on the route link to see it in more detail

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