Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Wind Is My Friend. The Wind Is My Friend

 Let me tell you about the wind on the East Coast.  If the wind is going to be a factor in anything you plan on doing, like spreading powdered lime on your lawn, you need to do it early in the morning.  It's the calmest part of the day.  As mid to late morning approaches, we get whatever wind out of the north.  At 2PM or so, the wind switches and comes off the ocean.  It's a southerly wind and it always picks up in speed.  Most afternoons it's a 10-15 MPH wind.   Today, it was closer to 25 when we were on the return leg of the ride.  Outward it was the usual 10-12,  We always hem and haw about it, but less so as the riding season progresses.   When the wind gets extreme we tend to get silly because it's the type of ride that can drive you nuts if you don't lighten up.  After all, we ride in an area that is quickly becoming a breeding ground for wind turbines.  We have learned to deal with it.

Today was  47 miles by three guys recovering from different levels of colds.  Dave had a mild case of pneumonia, Brandon spent the day yesterday vomiting, even while he was working the ovens in a local pizza joint. (Nice picture that makes huh?).  I have been sluggish for the past couple of days fighting off some kind of bug.  We all came to life during the ride and we all took it to our limit and finished just as fatigue was getting to be an issue.

The signs of summer were everywhere from people in kayaks, the opening of ice cream joints on the Cape, to the traffic beginning to pick up.  We found a different coffee stop on this regular route, which takes us away from what can be a really hectic crossing of a high speed road that is an alternated route between the two Cape Cod Canal bridges.

Dave our biking Esquire almost got to touch an Iphone 4.  Brandon was explaining how it works when Dave mentioned he had never even touched and Iphone or Ipad.  Hearing this, Brandon made Dave settle for just observing while Brandon did all the maneuvering of the apps and browsing options. "Dude, I just bought the thing, I don't want it broken on the second day", was Brandon's reasoning for not letting Dave handle his new toy.

All things considered, we had a pretty good day of bike riding.  Hope you did too.

Kayaks on Mary's Pond in Rochester, MA.

First weekend for this ice cream joint in Buzzards Bay, MA. 

This is an Iphone  This is an App.   This is Safari web browser. 

 A different angle looking at the Bourne Bridge from the mainland side of the Canal

More kayaking in Wareham, MA

Water Break in Rochester, MA. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Riding to Lacrosse Practice

The head coach left me with only 6 players for my practice session.  We had a game yesterday and have one tomorrow, so I planned a short hour long session.   I only had to bring a handful of lacrosse balls which made it easy to do the 6 mile commute by bike.   On the way home from practice I stopped in to see Brandon who was in the middle of his second day on the job at the boatyard.

Remnant of the old main road to Cape Cod.  Rt. 6

Prepping boats for the summer 

Quitt'n time

Three homes in Mattapoisett village.   MA. 

Looking across the bay toward Falmouth on Cape Cod

Almost home.

Brandon's First Commute

Brandon moved home from Austin TX a couple of months ago with a promise of a job at a local shipyard.  That fell through but he did land a position at a smaller boatyard in Mattapoisett, MA.   It's only five miles from the house so commuting by bike is really a no-brainer.    

I asked to ride with him on his first day and he OK'd it.  There is a Dunkin Donuts close to his work place so naturally I stopped for a hot coffee and because I was on my bike,  a bagel for second breakfast.   

P.S.   We are most likely going to ride the Erie Canal in July.   Stay tuned. 

Feeling good at 7AM

The rolled up pant leg is considered hipster I'm told.

Mattapoisett Boat Yard

Just a home on Lighthouse Rd. 

Dunkin Donut and second breakfast. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A 20 Mile Hammerfest

Click photos for big and look for the rider in the white shirt. 

I really thought this would be kind of a recovery ride but nooooo,  Brandon had other ideas.  He wanted to hammer on this ride.   "Lets do it"   We did a very quick 20 miles without really breaking into much of a sweat.  It's nice to start getting fit again.

 We call the hill shown up above and below Lance's Hill because it reminds me of a commercial he did once riding a hill in the cornfields somewhere.  The video was pretty neat and so is riding this section of Rochester, MA.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Holiday Ride 55 Miles Uphill and Into the Wind Both Ways. Just Like Grade School Days.

We had an early morning lacrosse practice with the high school which allowed plenty of time to do a long ride on this holiday. (Patriots Day).   It's also the day of the Boston Marathon which had been broadcasting heat warnings all week.  The temps reached the high 80's in town but on the coast we topped at around 80F. Lots of people were out on the MUPs and the canal path.

Dave and I set out around noon for a 55 mile jaunt to Buzzard's Bay and the southern point of the Cape Cod Canal.   We brought a lunch to eat on the canal but Dave couldn't wait that long.  He finished his meal while we visited a friend who owns the Onset Bay Marina.  I had half mine there but fought hard to save half a sandwich to have with a wonderful Dunkin Donuts coffee.  It's by far the best coffee in the Milky Way if not further out.

Onset Bay Marina.  Our first lunch spot. 

Wareham Ma. looking from Onset bridge

Dave had a difficult time with the hills today. He has been ill and his legs and lungs are not yet up to speed.  His bike fitness will improve as he rides more.  Won't take long.

Dave after a slow slog up one of our many hills in Wareham. 

We ran into some construction crossing the Buttermilk Bay Bridge. The first thoughts are that this is going to be tricky but once we got into the traffic we had no problem taking the whole lane because we easily kept pace with the car in front of us.  Actually we had to break quite a bit to keep out of the car's trunk.

Buttermilk Bay

Onset Bay

Once we got to the canal we sat for a while with a hot coffee and both of us commented that we didn't really feel like riding home.  We struck up a conversation with a couple who usually ride the canal and they commented on the wind.  "It's always nice riding north on the canal because it's mostly down hill (the path not the canal), and also down wind.  Coming back is always a chore because the wind can really whip up in the afternoon".

The wind was blowing today and we had a 26 mile ride into it's face to get home.  It worked out pretty well and we kind of got in a zone and forgot about the wind.  We were awakened from our dream occasionally when we added hills to the wind.  That sure got my attention at least.

Buzzards Bay Water Tower.

The view from our coffee break spot. 

This area has always been "Cranberry Country".  We all get a kick out of the commercials because they are standing in knee deep water all the time.  For those uninitiated, they flood the bogs during harvest in the fall.  After the bogs are harvested, the water stays throughout the winter to prevent the stems from dying off from frost-defrost cycle.   They are also good for ice hockey games in January and February

Wareham Ma. Cranberry Bog.  Not at all like the commercials

A solo rider checking his map. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Last Minute Sunday Ride

"I'll be over in a half hour".   That was the call I got, which gave me enough time to finish cutting the lawn and getting ready for a 20 mile bike ride.

This one was different.  We decided to ride to Buzzards Bay tomorrow.  The temps will be in the 80's which, I'm sure will bring out lots of people onto the canal bikeway.  We will only be riding a half mile on the MUP but we will finish the day close to 50 miles because of the trip to and fro.

We also decided that we would ride the Erie Canal this July.  I have no commitments, (work) to worry about so I will leave it up to Dave and Brandon to settle on a date.  This will be a 7 day trip and most of it will be camping.  Brandon and I have done it before and know that it's not that big a deal as touring goes.  It's nothing more than 7 days of bike riding.  But it is oodles of fun.

We want to do it between two fully supported rides so we can use their arrows.  Parks and Trails  ride from July 8th to the 15th.  It's a decent tour but you really gotta love crowds.  The Great Big FANY ride  across New York does their supported ride from the 22nd to the 28th of July.  We should fit our in nicely between the two, but the 21st is also a good starting date.

Today though we did a quick ride on one of the standard loops.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Dumpstah Fiyah Gone Mad.

 33 miles
top speed of 38mph
ave speed 14 mph.  (Brandon says it's because he had to turn back or stop so often to wait for me).
It was a decent day for a ride.  Originally it was going to be a short 20 miles or less followed by yard work.  Once we got near the half way point on the loop we decided to extend the miles.   We took a couple of roads for the first time on bikes and fortunately only had to backtrack once when we ended up in a cul-de-sac.

Giddy Yap. 

You may live in Acushnet if your mailbox has an engine. 

Apparently turkey have limited luck crossing this country road. 

Easter is approaching

After getting lost a couple of times on the country roads we decided to do some city riding.  We traveled the busy Ashley Blvd for a bit.  This is where the cars exit the highway and are still in that highway driving mode.  Brandon almost got creamed a couple of times, but he is a good rider and managed to get himself out of harms way.  When I got to those places everyone was stopped and swearing at that effing young biker.  I just pedaled by very nonchalantly humming Kumbaya.

The best donut shop around. 

The Ave.   New Bedford Ma. 

Da dumpstah was on fiyah.  Story and video here

Next ting I know it was up to the second flowah.  If I didn''t wake up I wouldn't be heyah.   the story.