Father’s Day Ride
I would imagine several of the days during The Ride will be like today’s. Nothing really spectacular. It was just churning the wheels, getting from Point A to Point B.
‘Twas a pretty day to ride, I’ll give ya that. Way better than the all-day monsoon we had yesterday.
I rode from Columbus to Chicago a few years ago. Had to go through Gary, Indiana and the south side of Chicago. Take a look:
I took the first picture in Gary. The second, the one with the barbed wire on top of the Family Dollar, was taken in Chicago. In riding through east Columbus, I saw several buildings just like that. Yes, including barbed wire on top of retail stores. East Columbus is indistinguishable from Gary or Chicago. Complete with gangs and drug-related crime, murders and robberies.
I’ve lived here since 1986. When the Navy stationed me here, it was East Columbus where I happened to settle. It was a very nice place to live. Not any more. Took just one generation for an entire quarter of the city to fall into ruin.
Speaking of falling into ruin:
My last duty station was the Naval Air Reserve Center Columbus at Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base. That picture above is of the front door to the place today. Years ago they decommissioned the command, but the buildings are still standing.
Took about forever to ride 60 miles today. In fact, it took nearly 8 hours. On the old bike, sans 30+ pounds of baggage, I could count on an effective 10MPH speed. That included stopping every now and again. It was a good rule of thumb: if I had 50 miles to go, with breaks, I knew I’d complete 50 miles in five hours.
But now I’m moving much slower and I obviously am taking longer breaks. My effective speed has dropped to less than 7.5 MPH. That may come to bite me in the ass on some of the longer Ride days. Those days where I’ve got to go north of 70 miles. I’ll be pushing the limits of riding in the sunlight. Ah well. I’m prepared to ride in the dark. Would just rather not have to.
Which does remind me about something I meant to mention in yesterday’s Night Ride post. The light I bought:
has five settings. The first three are all steady lamps while the last two are strobe lights. All five settings are to be used to have people see you, but the first three are for when you need to see the road. If you’re riding in well lit areas, like city streets, the streetlamps do a pretty good job of lighting your way. You really only need to make sure drivers see you. Thus, the strobe lights.
The first three steady-lamp settings differ only in their brightness. Setting 1 is 700 lumens, 2 is 450, and 3 is just 200. Last night I rode almost the entire way, all 24+ miles, using the 200 lumen setting. It was sufficiently bright enough to let me see where I was going. The best part, though, of using setting 3 is that on a full charge, the light will last over six hours. That will help me get across the Mojave. If I know I can leave as early as 3AM when the temperatures will be at their coolest, and have enough light to last until dawn, that’s a game changer.
What the fuck?
Two years without a flat tire and then I have to fix two in two weeks? God knows I could use the practice, but come on.
I was on nothing but very heavily trafficked roads all day long. Until a portion of the last ten miles when I hopped off onto a bicycle trail I knew well. Yesterday’s rains left me a present:
That’s 85+ miles in less than 24 hours. I’ll take it.
I did get “Happy Father’s Day” wishes from my girls:
and my boys appreciated having me home: