Monday, August 31, 2009

Latigo Canyon Road, Malibu

While vacationing in So. Cal., my family visited my wife's cousins in Malibu.  A beautiful, warm sunny day, like every other day I hear, my cousin Russell & Brett, avid riders themselves convinced me to ride the above mentioned ride.  Local legend, (Brett) has it that about 4-5 years ago while riding in the Malibu canyons he came across a rider dressed in black on an umarked Trek.  After trying to chase down the rider, it turned out it was Lance A on a casual training ride.  Turns out, these climbs are used by many of the U.S. based pro teams due to their length & steepness.

So, I figured I'd give it a climb.  This climb in particular was 7.5 miles with many switchbacks & an elevation gain of about 2,000'  Although it may not have been the steepest climb, it was certainly an accomplishment.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tobay Sprint Triathlon in Oyster Bay

I did not ride with the NSW today as I did the Tobay Triathlon.
The result was as usual slower than I would have liked. Total Time 1:28:46.

Now the excuses.
I felt very strong in the swim but started in a bad place. As a result I had to fight through a bunch of slow swimmers in my wave until I could bring myself up to speed. I must have lost over a minute due to my poor pre race positioning. By the end of the swim I had the same problem. I had to push my way past swimmers who were fading. I literally had to swim over them in accelerating to the finish.
I felt very good on the bike. Thank you North Shore Wheelmen. I began to lose focus by the last mile or so and that cost me some time.
I currently suck at running. I kills me that I have not been training consistently and I can not run at a speed that I can be happy with. My next race will be at the end of November. I will see if my hamstrings behave.

However, I did feel that I had a good time. I believe I did go faster than last year. When I got home I went to the pool and swam an additional 40 minutes.

Next week I plan to do the one mile open ocean swin in Long Beach with JeffK.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

BauBike (That's Bauhaus Bike)

This is what happens when you let a Bauhaus inspired architect design a bicycle. Note, the entire frame is made of square section pipe, even the handlebar.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Sunday 8/23 NSW vs Old Westbury Police

"Stop and pull over to the curb"
This was what I heard from the police SUV with its lights flashing as I rode on the eastbound service road of the LIE.

We started out at our normal meeting place in Great Neck. JeffB, Joe, JonD, and Isaac (me). It was a typical ride to Wheatley. We met up with DaveS, Dave, JeffK, and Harold. The plan was to go to the goats with Isaac suggesting that we add a Sagamore Hill loop. Shortly after we left Wheatley our ride was interrupted.

From my recollection it began with a demand from the officer in an Old Westbury Police SUV that we ride single file on the LIE service road. We did. We were at that time in the right lane. He then passed us. As I was leading I noticed that in a driveway further along that same Police SUV had positioned himself in an attempt to be out of our view.

JeffB said that the Police SUV then came up along side him and demanded that he ride to the "right". Then the officer said: "Not that right, the other right!" JeffB said that the officer rolled down his right window and Jeff explained to him that he/we could not ride to the extreme right as this area had sand and road debris. The area in question was to the right of the white line that had diagonal white lines. (see picture). What JeffK later called a breakdown lane. The officer in question called it the shoulder.

Next I heard the Police SUV behind me and Dave S. He demanded we ride to the right. I rode to the right just to the left of the white line. As JeffB had already informed him, we could not ride where he wanted us to ride due to road hazards. I did not know at the time that JeffB had told him that. Regardless I did not ride to the right of the white line. My belief was it was not safe. At this point the lights came on and we were directed to pull over.

As the Old Westbury Police officer exited his big SUV he declared that we were going to get tickets for not riding to the right and impeding traffic. He also stated that he had received complaints about all of the cyclists impeding traffic on the service roads of the LIE. He told JeffK that he would be getting a ticket too. JeffK said that he was behind him. The officer said that he had seen JeffK in his rear view mirror.

What fun we North Shore Wheelmen get ourselves into!

Not to be outdone JonD took out his wallet and flashed his badge. Harold complained that the officer should be going after the people speeding on the local roads and not us. The officer said that in five years of being in the police department he had never given a ticket to a bicycle. JeffB suggested to him that he should not ruin his perfect record. A long discussion ensued. Eventually after consulting his traffic law book and expert legal nudging, actually I believe it was noodging, we were set free sans tickets.

The rest of the ride was almost uneventful. We went to the goats, a Sagamore Hill loop, a stop in Bayville and home by way of Factory Pond and Wheatley. At the Bayville stop some cyclist disobeyed a red light and lightly bumped into a older man crossing the street. Later It seemed the man that he was with who claimed to be a policeman? got into a pickup truck and peeled out in the direction of those cyclists. We do not know what happened. It must have been something in the air that day.

We encountered a cloud burst and Isaac encountered a flat tire on Wheatley. When I noticed that my front tire was flat I began to slow down. Just then I heard the shouts of the 8:30 Triangle group. They had been coming up behind me and were chiding me for hitting my brakes. I did not know that they were there.

Back in Great Neck by Noon. About 53 miles.

Next week Isaac will be at the Tobay Triathlon in Oyster Bay. Watch out for 1000 cyclist. It is a shame we wont be riding through Old Westbury.

For more info about New York State bicycle laws see this very informative pamphlet produced by the state, The third paragraph of the first question states that bicyclists "must obey all traffic signals, signs, and pavement markings. Look at our picture. Is this an area that a motor vehicle could drive in legally? Can you call this area a shoulder? The NYS Vehicle and Traffic Laws section 1234, , has most of the information that we need to know. It does not specifically note pavement markings as the pamphlet does. It does say bicyclists can ride in the shoulder.

Also in the pamphlet in the Tips For Motorists, the sixth line of tips notes that experienced bicyclists will ride in the center of the traffic lane three of four feet from the curb to allow them room and time to avoid road hazards and be better noticed.

If this is a state publication then this is what the state wants us and allows us to do. I will try to get my hands on copies of this pamphlet from the state as it has more info than the NYS Vehicle and Traffic Laws and distribute them.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Adventures in Chains

I had the dirtiest chain. Luckily I had a powerlink on my chain which allowed me to remove it very easily without tools.
The following is a web site that I found useful.

I used paint thinner and then a spray lube. I am going to get some chainsaw oil.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sunday 8/16 Hot and Humid

A fine group of wheelmen rolled out of Great Neck: BobL, Ori, Isaac, Barry, JeffB, MattB, JonD, Amos, and Joe. At Wheatley we met up with JeffK, Dave, Paul, Harold and eventually Andy.

The group split with the long riders taking the sunnyside extension to Snake Hill and then to the Woodbury Deli. The short group skipped the extension. Amos and Joe went even shorter.
At Woodbury Arthur met up with us. How important it is not to miss the take off from Wheatley.

The long group went home by way of the campus. The short group went to white church home.

Did I say hot and humid. I went through 5 water bottles of fluids. Also we had a close call as BobL took a minor spill. Just some road rash as far as I know.

Total miles around 57.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Sunday 8/9 - A milestone, a 5000 milestone

The forecast was for a wet morning but the weather stayed dry for Joe, Amos, JeffK, JeffB, JonD, and Isaac. The route was Sea Cliff for the first time this year. Joe and Amos turned back at Bayville. What transpired later was a milestone.

After Bayville it was suggested that we go to Sagamore Hill. Jon was concerned about the rain. Isaac had never been there and wanted to meet Teddy Roosevelt. Isaac prevailed. Sagamore Hill was followed by Sandy Hill, Syosset Bagel, and due to the threat of rain we took the service road home. CharlieG plus one joined us for the ride home.

Who says we stop too much?
We actually passed two riders, Diane and her friend, (I did not get her friend's name). We would stop and they would pass us. We would catch up and pass them, then stop to regroup and they would pass us. This happened four times.

Finally, the day's celebration occurred just past Oyster Bay. JeffK 's odometer on his bike reached 5000 miles! Kudos to JeffB for the pics.

Total miles about 55.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Wet Sunday 8/2

What started as a dry morning turned into a wet ride. Again the NSW was in double digits in attendance.

The ride was standard Bayville. Isaac, Andy, Neil, Barry, and Bob went ahead. We did Moore's Hill Road then on to Snake Hill Road, Woodbury Deli, the Switchback, Bumpy, Campus and home.
We began to feel a drizzle on the way to Bayville then it was just rain. The pull from drafting behind Bob made up for the discomfort of the spray coming off Bob's back wheel. My sunglasses became my wind(spray)shield. By the time we reached the Bumpy the rain had mostly let up.

I do not know what happened to the second group, which include Herb, JeffB, Harold, Joe, Amos, and JonD. When I returned to Lakeville and Northern all of the other cars were gone.

There is a real sense of satisfaction that comes from the grime and road dirt that you are covered with after a wet ride. Like a badge of honor.

Total distance 60 miles.