This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

A weekend trip with music

I had the occasion last weekend to make another cycling and camping trip but didn't have the time to cover the whole distance by bike. Since part of the route included an MUP, the Muskatawa trail I've mentioned in the past, I decided to drive to that trailhead and start from there.  Now leaving my car at an unsupervised trailhead made me a little apprehensive.  There are no parking restrictions posted anywhere in their literature, website or at the trailhead itself so I was legal.  On the other hand,  leaving a car defenseless out in a strange place where they aren't normally left for days has to make one a little nervous.  I took one of my business cards, turned it over and wrote, "on trail" with my phone number.  I realize that was the dumbest thing I could do, but for some reason it made me feel better.  Dumb?  Well yeah, it's like leaving a sign on the car that says, "steal me, nobody will bother you!"
I went ahead and packed everything up
and took off enjoying the beautiful weather and the knowledge that I had done all I could to facilitate the safe and timely theft of my ride home.  The weather was perfect.  Practically no humidity or wind and temps were mid 60's. and there was hardly a cloud in the sky.  The kind of day when I can cruise comfortably and average 15 mph without feeling like I worked at it. I made a few stops on the way, at one country store a local guy with as many teeth as I have common sense, commented that I looked like I could "carry a whole case of beer on that."  Now that's what it's all about - communing with the local color.  At one point, my son sent me a text and asked what I was doing.  I replied; " I am observing a natural wetland habitat."
He said "Huh."  I said,

"I'm looking at beer cans in a swamp!"  Now he understood, I assume my friend from the store hangs out here on occasion.
The balance of the 60 miles was really pleasant.  Again this was another scout group, so I spent a pleasant weekend of activities.  Around the campsite I noticed a few staring at my bike looking as if they wanted to ask a question but not knowing what the question should be. It's funny to see a group of experienced outdoorsy types, who think nothing of throwing a few things together and disappearing into the mountains, get so completely confused and intimidated by a bicycle.  I must have broken the ice with this bunch, because I actually had a few people ask some intelligent questions, like how far I ride each day, where I have gone before, but most just stared.  It was really noticeable when I broke camp Sunday morning and packed everything in less time than they could get it in their truck.  I rode past them all through the woods to the dining hall with their question marks staring after me.
The ride home would have been as nice as the ride up, except for a little wind which made things a little slower.  I still managed to maintain 14 MPH which is good with a totally geared up bike.  The wildflowers are out and the air had that freshness that comes with new leaves on the trees.

I was wondering about a post I saw on a Bike Forum recently.  The author wanted to know how to fight boredom on a long tour.  One answer was even using an Ipod and radio.  I thought about that while I felt my pedal cadence counter the shuffling of wind through young leaves while chirps and caws built a melody over the monotone drumming of frogs nearby.
Are they not paying attention?


  1. Hi, Marc I have been following your blog for a while, and I have a question about the differences you might notice between Hunqapillar and the Long Haul Trucker. I am looking for a really stout touring bike that handles load well.

  2. First Sam thanks for reading and your comments. If you've followed my blog you know the build for my Hunq was raided from my LHT. The only difference is the frame. The Hunq is a much better frame. The LHT handles like it's namesake, slow calculating and carefully. It's going to be comfortable all day long.
    On the other hand, the Hunq is every bit as comfortable as the LHT, but thanks to some small but very noticeable difference in geometry, the Hunq is worlds apart in handling. It's much more responsive and agile. It's not a road bike, but even fully loaded,I canshoot through traffic with amazing ease. I just got back from the Mountain Mayhem, despite the"stout" frame and 38mm tires,I never walked, not even on the"Wall"( a29% grade).
    I'm confident I could put knobbies on it, load it up and take off in the forests for a week.
    I'm really pleased that I decided to buy the Hunq, it's a great heavy duty go anywhere anytime under any conditions fully loaded for big boys bike.