Tweed Ride 2016 ride report

On Sunday April 17 we here in Portland had our annual Tweed Ride. This was an interesting Portland Tweed Ride 2016 for me, mostly for three reasons:

  1. While I have helped in some capacity with the Tweed Ride since 2012, this is the first time I was the major force in creating the route.* Not only that, but I would be LEADING the actual ride, rather than be somewhere in the pack.
  2. It was HOT. While we had a warm Tweed Ride in 2014, it had only hit the low 70’s. Sunday hit the low 80’s. While it’s easy to dress for Tweed Ride in temps up to maybe 65F, it gets hard after that since most Tweed is pretty heavy-weight. I made a “compromise” outfit of (synth) knickers, long (thin) socks, Clarks boots, gauze cotton shirt, tweed cap, and a nice cheap tweed vest I picked up at the Goodwill on Saturday night. Not my preferred outfit, but it worked!
  3. This was the first year I brought a (gasp!) derailleur gear bike! Every other year that I have participated in the Tweed Ride (save for the first year, when I rode a single speed) I’ve ridden a British three speed, as they are the most appropriate bike for a Tweed Ride. I could have pulled out the Raleigh Superbe, but it still needs fine tuning (like at least truing the front wheel.) I hadn’t ridden the Raleigh Crested Butte on Tweed before, but it’s pretty Tweedy in its day-to-day iteration. Plus, the giant Wald front rack carried my picnic basket!

Anyways, I met the masses at Lownsdale Square downtown around 2pm. We had maybe 80 folks on the ride. Our truncated** route took us through the heart of downtown, across three Willamette River bridges including the new Tillikum, along the waterfront, and by the bike mural in SE. We ended at Old Portland Hardware wear prizes were given out, then people dispersed to do their own thing.

I didn’t take many photos, as it’s hard to do that when you’re leading a ride! But if you want a good representation of what it looked like, there’s a nice pictorial report on the Oregonian.

And the ride route here.

*There was someone else who was supposed to do this. They sketched out half of the route but had to bail. So I took over the main responsibility. Carla, the chief organizer, also helped by doing the ride along with me.

**We originally hoped for a more ambitious second half after the tea stop, but energy levels were low.

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