Ride a bike, share your experience and love. When I go biking, I repeat a mantra of the day's sensations: bright sun, blue sky, warm breeze, blue jay's call, ice melting and so on. This helps me transcend the traffic, ignore the clamorings of work, leave all the mind theaters behind and focus on nature instead. I still must abide by the rules of the road, of biking, of gravity. But I am mentally far away from civilization. The world is breaking someone else's heart. ~Diane Ackerman

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Sunday, December 27, 2009

I found Puffy on GMR!

It was a lonely, last minute ride up GMR today. Sundays are typically reserved for Church, but with the whole family sick, I was able to sneak in a GMR ride. GMR was quiet with only a handful of hikers, motorcyclists and cyclist. I made it to East Fork in a fair amount of time before turning around and heading home.

On the way up, I spotted "Puffy" the resident dragon and protectorate of GMR. I snapped a picture and sang Puff the Magic Dragon while coming down.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


When I go biking, I repeat a mantra of the day's sensations: bright sun, blue sky, warm breeze, blue jay's call, ice melting and so on. This helps me transcend the traffic, ignore the clamorings of work, leave all the mind theaters behind and focus on nature instead. I still must abide by the rules of the road, of biking, of gravity. But I am mentally far away from civilization. The world is breaking someone else's heart. ~Diane Ackerman

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Chillin' with Glendoramtnroad.com

Today there was a chill in the air, but with partly cloudy, partly sunny skies, I took my chances and headed out to meet Annette with "Minimal" cold weather gear. I was really running late, so I hustled to meet Annette at the corner of Sierra Madre and Glendora Mountain Road.

Fortunately, so was she and I beat her to our designated meet up spot. From there we headed up GMR. It was a nice easy ride to the first saddle and it was there Matt caught up with us.

Together we rode to the Maintenance Shed took a short break. I ate my Chocolate Chip Cliff Bar and downed some water. It wasn't a hot day, or even a warm day by many means but we were all soaked from our sweat. Matt headed back down and we all complained about how cold it would be heading home, soaking in your own sweat, only to have it evaporate off, cooling our bodies on an already cold day! As I said, Matt headed back down while Annette and I headed to Fork plus 2.5.

After any rest, the initial start is always hard, bones ache and muscles burn until you have "spun" enough to get your body back in motion. This was especially hard for me on this cold day.

At Fork Plus 2.5 we decided to head back. I zipped up my windbreaker and pulled my beanie over my ears. Annette put on her toe booties/covers and wool socks. Actually, she put the wool socks over her hands as a poor mans winter glove. I laughed because, she had her long sleeve jersey, leg warmers, wool socks (The ones on her feet), toe booties, not to mention her Polar High Tech Power Meter, Full Carbon bike and for winter gloves she's sporting socks! Socks, I think someone needs to get her an early X-Mas present!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Photoshop is Awesome!

Marshal Canyon - The Posse is out watching over Bambi

Meet at 7:30 am and on the trails by 7:50, Meme, Carl and I headed up Marshal Canyon. It was an easy ride, a fun ride without the mashing of gears or racing to the top. After the plateau, we met up with Bobby and Richard. Bobby's Mounted Assisted Unit, Sheriff Posse, was out at Palmer Ranch (I think that's what the place was called). They were doing some type of out-reach program for less than fortunate kids, giving them horse rides around the arena. We stopped a few minutes to say hi.

We made it to the Gazebo before heading down Jump Trail. Down at the bottom of Jump Trail we spotted two fawns. I snapped a picture before they strode off the trail.

The weather was fair, a bit chilly in the morning but once we got moving we quickly heated up. At the top there was a fine layer of haze that kept the air chill.

After the ride we met with Kevin and Deanna for lunch.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Shadow Ninja Fixie

I've never seen a Pirate riding fixie.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Y.M.C.A to Santa Fe Dam

Ah what a great ride. Today, Meme, Peter, Carl, Kevin and I rode down 605 Trail, I think the correct name is San Gabriel Trail. It was nice to see Kevin after his 5 - 6 month hiatus. For him, its back to business and he did really well. On the way to Santa Fe Dam he hung with both Carl and Meme.

We saw many things like some dude in a Chucky Mask on a bike. It was funny but I think that dude must have been hot and sweaty in the plastic mask!

There were many riders, runners and we saw two guys on horse back.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Skid Marks - Recent Developments

Riding fixed gear is no easy task, sure its a throw back from the days of old, the first type of bicycle. I picture some dude in knickers, sports jacket and handlebar mustache riding his fixed gear on some back country road.

Fast forward to 2009 FG bikes are all the rage so being the enthusiast that I am I had to build one. Well I did and riding has been a blast and learning experience.

First, just riding a bike with NO freewheel was something to adjust to. My natural inclination is to stop pedaling when at the apex of a hill or "coast" on the down hill. Even in a turn, you don't think about it but you really stop pedaling, re-adjusting your pedal/crank in perspective to the ground to avoid pedal strike. I was quickly reminded I can't do these things on a fixed gear. With a fixed gear you have no choice but keep pedaling, period.

The Stop: Stopping can be tricky. I initially built the Green Hornet with no brakes but quickly axed that idea when cruising around my block. Stopping quickly is impossible. Sure you can romanticize on the idea of being one with your bike, the beauty of a simple machine. The oneness of human and bike maybe a romantic notion but without brakes it unsafe. I don't know how those crazy messengers barrel through the streets of New York, weaving through crowded boulevards and in and out of traffic without brakes. No way no how is that for me. I have neither the strength nor the skills to stop on a dime without a brake.

The bottom line, I installed a front brake. The front brake is what actually slows you down and I can apply enough back pressure to the cranks to stop sufficiently. I have also been practicing my skid. It took me a while to figure this one out but thanks to Sheldon Brown (Google him, he knows everything about bicycles), clipless pedals and determination, I finally learned how to skid on a fixed gear bike. The trick is to pull up on one pedal while applying mad amounts of downward force on the opposite. This function will effectively "skip" the rear wheel and if your are going fast enough you'll break into a skid.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Cal Poly Insect Fair - A Day Out With Grandma, Adam and Fran

Spent day with Grandma, Adam and Fran. We went to the Cal Poly Insect Fair and both kids had a chance to touch a millipede, a hissing cockroach, a walking stick, a big hairy tarantula and many more bugs. I bought some honey for Jamie.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Glendora Mountain Road with Bicycle Friends

Met Annette, Bill and Matt on GMR for a nice ride. This was my first time back since the Station Fire and lots was burnt.

We rode Fork plus 2 or 3 met many cyclist and a few cars/motorcycles.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

A few more pictures from Potato

Potato with a few Bicycle Friends

It was a cold cloudy morning when Carl pulled into my driveway. At 6:45 am it was still dark and the clouds hung low in the air. I loaded my bike and we were quickly off to meet Grace and Sarah for a big mountain bike ride. Today I had hopes of riding to Potato. The ride was a lot of fun and we made it to Potato.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Marshal Canyon

The ride started with Meme and I heading up Marshal Canyon. It was an easy ride with a few stops to talk and appreciate our environment. Once we reached the "Plateau" we stopped and observed the recent back fire and trail grading that was done a few days ago. With the recent grading, the bulldozers left most of Marshal Canyon soft and difficult to ride. Great, I was riding my cross bike with 35c "Skinny" tires.

Togi, Richard and Antonio met up with us at the Plateau. Meme was pressed for time and turned back, I heading up with Togi's group. Not before long, Antonio and I had pasted Togi's Group and together we headed up MC to Yellow Gate.

Antonio is a mountain goat and at 47 years old, rides like someone much younger. We zipped up MC to Yellow Gate and from the gate headed right to the Gazebo. At the Gazebo we rested a few minutes before heading down Cobal Canyon and then up Burbank.

From Burbank we headed back up to the Gazebo and met back with Togi's group. We all talked awhile before I headed down Cobal Canyon and back home.

Here are a few pictures of the remains of our county workers fire prevention measures up MC. At the Plateau some brushes was lay burnt. Twisted black charred branches contrasted against batches of green and gold and the blue sky. The bulldozers lay sleeping and their work flattened the trails and left most of MC soft. Riding in a straight line wasn't a problem. It was the twists and turns that became tricky with the possibility of sliding out in the loose dirt.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Off Road Safety has a New Tune

I bought a new bell for my SS Mountain Bike. The original one was damaged when I laid my bike down a few months ago. I kept using it although the bell barely rang. This new one has a nice ring to it and it comes in handy on heavily used trails like the Claremont Wilderness Trail.

The problem lies with hikers and joggers. If I yell, "On your right," they go right. If I yell," On your left," they go left. Sometimes they panic and freeze like a deer in the head lights. Other times they are pissed because I'm yelling, "On your right, left, whatever!"

When I was at the Sea Otter Classic, I was complaining about this very issue to a friend. He recommended I buy a bell. This way I can ring my bell and let the hikers/joggers decide where they want to go. Then, I just go the opposite side.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

CANIDAE at Marshal Canyon Gulf Course

Today was a nice cool, sunny day. With the current closure of GMR, I opted for a cyclocross ride up Marshal Canyon. There were lots of people on the trail and on the greens of the Marshal Canyon Gulf Course, I spotted three coyotes. They had something in their sights and paid little attention to me. The coyote in the middle was a healthy guy with a strong lean stature. I guess food is plenty up Marshal Canyon.

The ride was fairly easy, I didn't push to hard. I ran into a guy named Ron from Claremont. He's been riding these trails since 1989. Nice guy and much has changed since his early days of riding MC.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Night Vision

Around CAL POLY Pomona and MT SAC

Some Pictures of my ride around CAL POLY Pomona and MT SAC. It was a nice ride.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Bicycle Friends' Bicycles

Austro Daimler and a Centurion


Took Meme around Cal Poly then Mt Sac then up Grand Ave and Back home. On the way he got a monster cramp. His calves were cramping up pretty bad on the way home and forced him to stop and stretch and do whatever he could to loosen them up. You could see his calf muscle twitch! We made it home and refueled at Bravo Burgers in Pomona.

Riding around CAL Poly and Mt Sac was nice. Both schools have changed quite a bit since my days there. I remember at Mt Sac the new performing arts center just opened and I enjoyed going to plays and the dance recitals there.

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