Our community has a brand new mayor. He’s young, energetic and he cycles! The local cycling club thought it would be a great idea to get area cyclists together for a ride with the mayor to discuss cycling infrastructure & safety and to show our new mayor that there is a growing culture of cycling in Saint John.
Here are video highlights from today’s ride. SOUNDTRACK: “Who We Are” by The Candles
A local trail shop posted a short video on their Facebook page recently which really made an impression on me! It’s a video/advertisement created by Merrel which contrasts climbing a real mountain with simulating a climb on a stair master. The video is well done and really make me wonder why anyone would chose to workout inside when they could be outside communing with nature. I realize that going outside has it’s challenges i.e. inclement weather, a greater element of risk (think cycling in traffic versus spin class), sun exposure, bugs… but I gladly put up with all that to ride by sparking rivers/lakes/oceans, majestic trees and breathtaking views.
Hubby’s employer is having a family picnic tomorrow complete with barbecue and bouncy castles. Our kids are too old for such nonsense so we’ve decide that it’s a perfect opportunity to best our previous cycling record. The ride is 110 km return (if we survive it). The wind is not reported to be in our favour…. 30 km per hour with gust to 50 km per hour. Ouch!
The ride includes our usual Saturday stopover at the Kingston Farmer’s Market for breakfast. Kingston is at the 30 km mark so breakfast will be extra sweet tomorrow as I will have passed the 2,000 km mark for the year.
We’re invited to cottage country next weekend for a horseshoe tournament. Our first thought was “oh that’s going to cut in to our cycling”. Is that pathetic?
Then we got the bright idea to bike there and back. It’s 85 km each way so getting there is certainly doable but the problem is, after arriving at said cottage, there would certainly be some “socializing” which might make it challenging to get on the bike the next morning for the return trip.
We’ve driven the road many times over the years but not with our cycling goggles on. Friday night we went for a drive. What we discovered:
Big hills: This itself is not a problem. We are used to hills and especially the nice rolling kind make the ride more enjoyable.
Very narrow: The shortest route to the lake takes us through some almost uncharted territory. The brush along the road is grown up and has not been cut back in many years.
Winding: The road twists and turns. Although we are unlikely to encounter many cars along the way…they are also unlikely to be expecting to meet cyclist. On many of the turns, cars would not see you until the last second. Dangerous!
Condition of the pavement: The pavement on these roads is a mess of cracks and potholes. Flat tires are no fun!
Lack of stores: For long stretches there are no stores to stop and buy food or water. We would have to carry more supplies than usual.
Lack of cell service: For long stretches there’s no cell phone coverage which means, if we did run in to trouble, we would have to flag down a passing car or stop at a nearby cottage. Maritimers are know for their hospitality so this is also not a show stopper but unsettling nonetheless.
Conclusion: We’ve decided that the ride is too risky. If we decide to go to the lake next weekend we’ll do an early morning ride and then take the car.
NOTE: photo above is not of the road is question but gives you an idea of the conditions.
I’ve always ridden a hybrid but recently my husband and I have been thinking about upgrading to road bikes. The type of riding we’ve been doing most recently (longer and faster) certainly lends itself to better and lighter bicycles. So we did it!
On Friday we hit the bike sale a Bike Works and splurged on two carbon composite road bikes. Mine is the Giant “Avail” Composite 3 and his the Giant “Defy” Composite 3. We took them out for their inaugural ride to the Kingston Market and we shaved approx 15 minutes off our normal time. They fly!
I’m still getting the hang of the GoPro camera. I don’t find the design intuitive. I’m always fumbling with the buttons hoping to press the right combination to get the setting I want. This shot of me was taken in photo burst mode. Sadly I thought I was putting it on time lapse. Imagine my disappointment to get home and find 3 photos just like this one instead of the 30 shots I wanted (each at 1 minute intervals). Oh well.. I’ll master it soon enough. Lots more rides in the future to experiment with.
The day we’ve been waiting for! A great forecast for tomorrow means a 92 km trek across the Peninsula. Our ride will include 2 ferries (the Romeo & Juliet and the Westfield Ferry). The route also includes breakfast at the Kingston market around 9:30 a.m. and an ice cream cone at the Grand Bay Pumpkin Patch around noon.
The weather has been so cold that we have yet to put out our patio furniture which mean we might have to have our “ride ending” honey brown sitting in the front yard Adirondacks.
Shelley Wood has a big heart. I’m not just talking about a big strong heart muscle from all that cycling that she does… I’m talking about a generous heart! She’s passionate about cycling and has found a way to make that passion work for others by participating in cycling events which raise money for kids with cancer. One of the notable things about the charity that Shelley is involved with is that 100% of the funds raised goes directly to the kids. This year she is doing the “HERO RIDE” which is to take place on June 1st, 2013. She’s still short of her goal of raising $2,500. Click here to read more about Shelley and to donate.
Today we enjoyed a nice ride to the seasonal fresh produce market a.k.a. the Pumpkin Patch for some hard ice cream. This is a recurring theme for our bike rides i.e. to and from the ice cream stand, to and from the Kingston Market for breakfast. In May we’re going to NYC and have a day of biking planned (organized tour). We’ll get to see a lot of Manhattan but the tour also includes a stop at a brewery and another stop at a chocolate pastry shop. Cycling…beer…chocolate…ice cream…a few of life’s simple pleasures. Happy Easter!