Pizza Ride 2015: Tuesday July 21

Back by popular demand! We skipped it during Pedalpalooza, but July is still fine.

The premise is the same as every single pizza ride we have done, going way back to the beggining of time (or before you moved here), known as 2005: Ride to at least five different pizza places, and consume a slice at each one. We order full pizza pies in advance, which means the pizza will be fresh and hot, and it will be cheaper than everyone buying a slice. (Plus, it would be a logistical headache if 24 people each ordered a slice at each place. The ride would be only two stops long!)

And while the ride stops and route have been and will always be a mystery, we’re letting you in on a li’l more info this year: It will be an all North Portland ride! Most of the stops (if not all) will north of Going and west of I-5.

Cheese pizza will be ordered at each stop, so this will be a vegetarian friendly ride. This is not a gluten-free friendly ride. Not really vegan friendly unless there are enough vegans to make it economical to buy a full pie. (If you are vegan, let us know.)

The cost for this ride is $15, which will be collected before we start riding. (Make sure you have cash ready!) This will guarantee everyone participating one slice at each of the five stops. If you want extra slices or beverages (like beer!), that’s on you. (We may have extra slices depending on the amount of registrants.) The $15 is a flat fee that assumes you’re going to stick around for the whole ride (and you should, if you decide to go on this!) If you only do three stops, or even the first one, there will be no partial refunds. Please don’t commit to the ride if you are not comfortable with this.

There may be a bonus last stop (stop 6). If we have enough extra cash, we can cover the cost of pizza for Stop 6 from the $15 you paid, otherwise, you’ll have to cover part/all of the cost of the Bonus Stop.

Because of the mystery of all this, the start location will not be divulged until Friday July 17th, and then it will only be to people registered. We will say that the start will be near a MAX stop on the Yellow Line. But that’s all we’re saying. The end of the route may not be convenient to where you want to end up at 10 pm or so, but that’s the nature of this ride. We should end up somewhere transit accessible, though, around North Portland. Please don’t commit to the ride if you are not comfortable with this.

The full details (including start location) will be emailed to registrants by Friday July 17th. Please make sure that emails from Eventbrite aren’t going into your spam filter! If we don’t hear from you in the appropriate time to confirm that you got the email, we WILL call you. Please be prompt on responding to this email!

If this all sounds like fun, and not too difficult for you, then sign up!

Sunset/Moonrise Ride Report, Wed July 1

It was another hot day in Portland, another day of a high above 90F, which has happened with alarming frequency in June. But by the time 7 pm hit, the cooling had started, and nine of us had gathered at Ps and Qs market on NE Dekum St in Woodlawn. I led the group up to Broughton Beach, the public beach on the Columbia River, about 1 mile east of the junction of NE 33rd Drive and Marine Drive. I’ve got a favorite backway to get down to NE 33rd that avoids the bridge across Columbia Blvd. This backway features a nice li’l path along a side channel of the Columbia Slough.

We got to the beach around 8, so nothing to do but hang out and wait. The full moon rose shortly before the sun set, appearing quite ghostly and faint for the first few minutes of its rising. The sun set, the moon got brighter, and we also had a special appearance of Venus and Jupiter pretending to be twin stars in the early evening sky.

As it got dark, folks filtered off, towards home. Vince and I stopped at the Sextant and its river view patio for a post sunset beer.

Lael Wilcox finishes Tour Divide 2015 in 17:01:51


You probably know that I don’t care much about bike racing (which means it’s going to be hard to go to Velo Cult in July, since they’ll be playing TdF ALL THE TIME), but Lael is a friend of the Urban Adventure League. And right now she is the fastest woman EVER to ride the Tour Divide, chopping off the old record by TWO DAYS. And she did it while suffering from some nasty health issues like bronchitis! So, congratulations Lael, you are bad-ass!

Originally posted on gypsy by trade:

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Lael was in and out of Silver City, NM in a hurry.  Despite the late hour, the 128 miles to the border, and a bloody knee and bruised shoulder, she pushed to the finish and kept ahead of her nearest competitors.  She is the first to Antelope Wells after the record-setting lead group of  male riders.  Photo courtesy Lucas O’Laughlin.

Lael Wilcox pedaled to the Antelope Wells, NM border crossing this morning at 9:47AM Mountain Time, with a total transit time of 17 days 1 hour and 51 minutes (17:01:51) from Banff, Alberta, Canada.  Her time improves upon Eszter Horanyi’s 2012 record of 19:03:35 by more than two days.

Lael pedaled from her home in Anchorage, Alaska to the start of the Tour Divide in Banff, Alberta.  Recently returning from a ten-month period of bicycle travel in Eastern Europe, South Africa, and the Middle East, she quickly prepared a new…

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Bike Camp Cookout, Monday July 13

Remember the camp cookout ride I led last summer? Y’know, the successful one, not the failed one that happened during Pedalpalooza. Well, I didn’t do one during Pedalpalooza this year, since the Country Bike Ramble had the “camp cookout” component. But few people actually cooked at the Country Bike Ramble. So why not do one in July? Especially since we’ll have an “honored out of town guest” for this one!

The deets:

Monday July 13
Meet at 6 pm, ride at 6:30 pm sharp
Kenilworth Park, SE 34th and Holgate Blvd. (Meet atop brick comfort station)
One of the best parts of bike camping and touring is making meals. Here’s a chance to do that without actually going camping! Ride 5 miles to a mystery park destination where we’ll make dinner. Nerd out over camping stove setups and impress everyone with the feast you’ll craft! Please note: camping stove required, not a grill/hibachi. And no dehydrated/”instant” meals that you bought at REI. Get creative! Note: No grocery stop, come prepared!

Ryan cooks, Coconut Bill watches.

Ryan cooks, Coconut Bill watches.

Sunset/Moonrise Ride, Wed July 1st

You know how I love to go to a spot to watch the sun set and the moon rise on the day of the full moon, and the next one is next Wednesday. So why not join me this time?

The details:

Wed July 1
meet at 7 pm, leave at 7:30 sharp
P’s & Q’s Market, 1301 NE Dekum St 
It’s the night of the full moon, which rises just around the time of sunset! We’ll ride an easy 5 miles to a great spot to see both, and to just hang out. Stock up on food and libations at the start. Sunset 8:48 pm, moonrise 8:16 pm.15185506062_9780ba8da7_z

Pedalpalooza 2015 Week Two wrap-up

After week one, the week where the only Pedalpalooza events I did were my own, week two was the week of finally going on some other folk’s rides! A nice change, for sure. Though it didn’t start great: I intended on doing the Mount Tabor Nature Ramble on Thursday morning, June 11th. A Thursday morning ride, great! (I typically work Thursday afternoons.) But it met at 10 am and Tabor is about a 45 minute ride from my house. By the time I got going, it was after that. I hoped to catch up with the ride halfway through it (it was supposed to end at noon), but when I got in touch with the leader just after 11 am, he said it was almost over. Ah well. At least I got to go up to Tabor!

So my first real ride was on the eve of Friday the 12th. And a real ride it was: the monthly installment of the Midnight Mystery Ride! This ride has happened every second Friday since February 2003. I’ve been on it countless times over the years (and led it several!) but I haven’t been on one in a few years, mostly because I work Saturday mornings and can’t deal with only getting a few hours sleep anymore. But since I would be working Saturday afternoon, I could sleep in easily.

The ride met up at Base Camp Brewing, left at midnight, and headed on the streets of the eastside to the Gateway Green area by I-205. As with most Pedalpalooza MMRs, it was large, at least 300, though I’ve seen larger. (And Gateway Green could easily accomodate a few thousand people.) It was fun despite my issues with my saddle on the Crested Butte.

Next was the N/NE Alleys Ride on Sunday June 14. This ride had about 100 folks tops, which is…a lot for alleys! But we meandered through many an alley, then took a mid-ride break at Woodlawn Park. There I decided to pull off since I was very close to home. It’s not often that rides go near my house!

Monday June 15 brought the Swan Island History Ride. There were maybe 75 people at the start. I was impressed by the numbers, since the last few times I did history rides during Pedalpalooza, I saw dwindling attendance. So is there new hope? (And maybe I’m a little…jealous that they had a lot of people?)

The ride started in the Skidmore Bluffs and would along the blufftops, then went down the Waud Bluff Trail to get to Swan Island. With its staircase. This is where I got a little…cranky for a moment. Y’see, I was still riding my Schwinn Heavy Duti since the other two bikes are out of commission for the moment. And I went up those stairs with the Heavy Duti once, ironically enough for the pre-routing of my Heavy Duti ride that happened last week. The experience of hauling the Heavy Duti up the stairs, along with the busy roads on Swan Island, made me decide to do the ride in NW instead, and never bring the Heavy Duti up or down those dreaded stairs. And here we are. Thankfully, someone with a bit more testosterone/strength than I offered to carry the bike down the stairs. Of course I took him up on it!

From there, we cruised along the busy roads on Swan Island and headed to the beach for a bonfire and hanging out, which was a lot of fun. And it was a fun ride (despite the stairs), though I found the history portion of the ride a bit lacking, probably due to the absence of a few people who were supposed to come along and help out.

And finally, Tuesday June 16 saw the Sunset Mystery Ride, and the return of the Raleigh Wayfarer. About 150 folks showed up at Peninsula Park, and then rode six miles down to Broughton Beach on the Columbia River for bonfire and sunset watching. This was A LOT of fun, especially since it’s a mystery sunset destination not that far from my house!

But man, I am worn out. All the rides, all the fun. All the drinking. I’m a hurting unit today (Wednesday.) I basically took it easy, spending the day catching up on the needed things (like updating this blog!) But getting worn out from all the fun is Pedalpalooza for you! And it’s nice to go on some big rides. I’m not always one for the big rides, especially the soundsystem ones, but doing it every once in awhile is fun. Now there’s still a week and change left. Will I make it?

The problem with more than one bike.

wpid-wp-1434251837313.jpgIn the years that I’ve been biking in Portland (fourteen, if you are counting), for most of that time I have owned at least two bikes. And the one biggest benefit of having more than one bike is if something goes wrong with one, you can ride the other until you get the other fixed.

The big caveat is “until you get the other fixed.”

I haven’t ridden the Raleigh Wayfarer three speed since I got back from the midwest at the end of May. Part of it was because I pretty much rode it exclusively for a month, so I was eager to get back on my other primary bike, the Raleigh Crested Butte “mountain” bike. And part of it was there were a couple issues with the Wayfarer: a slow leak and a broken cork grip, both of which needed to be tackled before I could ride it again. So I hung it up “for now” and rode the Crested Butte.

But now the Crested Butte is having an issue, namely the seatpost. Over the week the binder bolt holding saddle to seatpost has been loosening up mid-ride, meaning nose going way-up and getting, er, personal with my personal bits. Not comfortable, and not safe. And on further analysis, what I feared was the problem was actually the problem: the “teeth” that keep the saddle in place have stripped. So it’s not going to hold anymore. Eh. I’ve done this to a number of seatposts due to a combination of loaded saddlebags, “rough stuff”, and my fat ass. The only thing to do is replace the seatpost (and with something better this time!) The big problem is the seatpost is a non-standard size (26.0), which means I have to order it. And I don’t want to ride the bike in the interim, because of the obvious.

So that’s fine, because I can just hop on my Wayfarer–wait, no, I haven’t gotten around to fixing it yet! Well, I’ve halfway fixed it, as I patched the tube, but I still need to mount the wheel, and glue on the grip. And I haven’t had time lately, with work and Pedalpalooza. I can get to it in a few days, but that’s still “a few days”.

But thankfully–thankfully! I have another other bike: The Schwinn Heavy Duti. Yes, it’s a bear of a bike (less so than you’d think), but I can ride that around for a few days. But I better get one of those other bikes fixed before something happens to it!

But if I had only one bike? I might be off of it for a day because of an issue, but you better bet your ass I’m bringing it down to the shop as soon as I can to get it fixed!