Thursday, August 4, 2011

Smell the roses orientation ride

A few years ago I used to do a bit of cycling. After work I would come home, cycle downtown, ride along the seawall then ride home . I had two loops, one was 25 km, and the other was 40 km depending how I felt. I also rode with my friend on Saturday mornings after breakfast in Kitsilano. We would race around the seawall until one day my friend had a mishap and wrecked his elbow. My old bike was worn out with too much mileage so I upgraded to this bike


Of course I still have my racing bike with the 100 psi tires but the frame is old style with the shifters on the down tube. You could nearly lift it with your baby finger. This bike doesn't have the lightest frame but it is chrom-moly with alloy wheels and those new type of brakes which stop on a dime.


it has Shimano gears with the changers integrated into the handlebars


The cateye computer still has battery power and still works after all these years. I rushed home after work with the intention of going for a short cycle ride. I dug the bike out from the basement, pumped up the tires to 32 psi, and got out my chain lube and lubed the chain and gear cluster. I also sprayed the pivot points on the brakes and got a dust rag and dusted off the 8+ years of accumulated dust. It is illegal to ride a bicycle in BC without a helmet and I noticed that the inside cushions are disintegrating, so I may have to purchase a newer style helmet


I don't have mirrors mounted on my bicycle but since I wear glasses, I have this neat mirror gizmo which attaches to my left glass arm . Not the greatest but I have to monitor the traffic behind me

It took a few blocks to get used to the hang of things. Such as the front brake is the left lever, and the rear brakes are operated by the right lever, sort of opposite of how a motorcycle works.


I forgot that I did mount some accessories such as the front and rear fenders, rear rack and additional lighting

I cycled over to Queen Elizabeth Park and the hills defeated me, I had to stop for a quick power rest


I seem to be getting my rhythm back, twisting left and right gear levers to find the right gear ratios. Vancouver is bike friendly with many bicycle paths scattered throughout the city and I was able to use the traffic control button as I crossed Cambie Street


bike lanes are easily identified by these large bicycle graphics

My feeble muscles are running out of power so I stop again for a photo with this RCMP statue


I stop because I need to rest my legs. I am not used to this torturous method of transport. When I got home my legs were like jello and I could hardly walk, but it did feel good .

I have a short video . . .


  1. Wow, Bob. I'm impressed. My bicycle is hanging in the garage and hasn't been on the road at all this summer. It sort of competes with the motorcycle for attention. The last time it was ridden was last September to town and back, I think it's a 16 mile loop. I still have an old touring bike and it is now about 35 years old. Now you have me motivated to get it out for a ride...


  2. Dear Sir:

    It appears that summer days are bring out the urge to pedal once again — at least among many of my motorcycling friends. I lent my bike to my daughter, and she reported it stolen on her college campus only three weeks later. Just as well, I would never have ridden again anyway. Looks like you're having fun, though.

    Fondest regards,
    Twisted Roads

  3. You are lookin' good on that bike. I relate a lot to that right now since that is my only means of 2 wheeled transport. "Max" continues to sit in the garage under his cover and "Bruiser" and I get out at least once a week. It just has been incredibly hot here lately and we are hoping to get a bit of a reprieve this week. 95 degrees farenheit actually seems lovely compared to what we have had.
    I had to laugh at the foot picture. Can't you wear crocs while riding, or is that illegal in Canada as well. Just wonderin'


  4. The one thing I notice while bicycling is the lack of mirrors. Granted, we usually bicycle because we drink too much beer to get on motorcycles, but I'm still mortified at the lack of knowledge of surrounding vehicles. I wish all bikes had mirrors.

    Behind Bars - Motorcycles and Life

  5. The small mirrors you mount to your glasses or helmet actually work really well. The are so close to your eye that you get a really wide view of what's behind and next to you. Much better than mirrors mounted to the bike.

  6. Gathering 8 years of dust means hanging around a long time for your owner to get your out for a ride, but good for you! It is odd that there is a law that requires you to ride a helmet on a bicycle – on a motorbike, yes, but on a bicycle? The law-makers have way too much power. No doubt the day will come when cyclists have to wear gloves, knee and elbow pads, and oh, long sleeved shirts and long pants in case they get sunburned. The world is going health-and-safety mad!

  7. Congratulations for getting out. Getting some good exercise, and the weather looks gorgeous.

    The world seems to be going bicycle crazy. A guy at work has been trying to ride his to work a couple days a week. He has to walk his bike up our hill.

    I was actually sitting in the garage looking at mine the other day. Could only think the tires are still inflated because I put those slime tubes in it last change.

  8. Good for you Bob getting out on your bicycle. It seems there is a lot of dusting off of bikes going on right now. We are Tofino on vacay and dragged our bikes with us. Iwent or a cycle into the big metropolis of Tofino. It would appear I am in need of some exercise a little more regularly. Coming home was a breeze, it was all down hill - yay!

    Glad you got out on your bicycle. Where you a little sore the next day, I know I was. Good to feel the old muscles again. Enjoy the sunshine while it's here.

  9. Bob

    Cycling is my outdoor exercise of choice but I would never dare to publish a video of it!

    I don't think that mirrors are vital - I usually hear the cars breathing down my neck behind me. May have to change my opinion tho' with all those stupid electric cars coming out!

  10. Thank you for the lively account of bicycle riding. It was just what I needed to read as I have been considering pulling my own bike out of mothballs and putting it back on the road.

    Now I am comfortable once again forgetting about it and leaving it in the basement.

    Steve Williams
    Scooter in the Sticks

  11. Bobskoot, like RichardM, my own bycicle had hung off the garage ceiling for years on end. It's been now put into service as my youngest son's bike (its a bit big for him but he's handling it).

    I prefer my two wheeled vehicles to have an engine. : )


    Redleg's Rides

    Colorado Motorcycle Travel Examiner

  12. Yay! You got the bike out :)
    Wasn't that fun!!

    I use a similar type mirror on my glasses. I can not ride without a mirror anymore. Makes me feel way to vulnerable. I can see better with that little bicycle mirror than what I can with the Ninja mirrors.

    Keep it up, next time we can do a bicycle tour! ;)

  13. RichardM: I bought this bike brand new and only put 500 kms on it before I parked it. I pumped up the tires and lubed the chain, sprockets and brake mechanisms. I just have to build up my muscles.

    I like squeeze air horns. This one is rusted a bit I want to put one on the Strom

    Jack: Jack, it's not fun when your feeble engine power can't pedal up little hills, or when you have to stop to catch your breath. Just need more practice

    Jimbo: Most people up here don't wear gear, except helmets are mandatory. I like to wear sandals as they can't slip off, but for you, perhaps I will come up with a Croc photo. Cycling in heat doesn't sound too good. Our temps are cool up here

    Brady: I agree, I have to have a mirror so I have the one which clips onto my glasses. Yesterday I bought another one for the handlebars

    RichardM: You have to get use to the clip on ones as you tend to move your head around a bit, esp when going uphill. I bought another one for the handlebar

    Gary: I agree we are too legislated for our own good. There is a section of road downtown where the "steet people & Homeless" always J-walk and cross the street midblock. There have been many accidents so the city decided to lower the speed limit for cars to 30 kmh, instead of educating those people to use crosswalks and signal lights, so now we all suffer

    Steel Cupcake: what are you waiting for ? You don't even have to pump up the tires. I want to see your minimilist bike attire. I work too far away to even consider cycling

  14. Dar: Victoria is very bike friendly and less hills than in Vancouver. Glad you managed to get out for a ride too. The last time we were in Tofino we stayed in Ucluelet at the old Roots place owned by Jason Priestly. We had a 3 level townhouse all to ourselves and gorged on crabs and other seafood. I have a video on my YouTube channel of the Wild Pacific Trail

    Nikos: I need mirrors, my huffing and puffing makes them invisible

    Steve: I needed to exercise more and BlueKat was posting her bicycle adventures, so I just had to dust off my bike. Vancouver is very bike friendly, we have lots of bike routes and special signal lights, and bike racks everywhere downtown. Time to get your plan into action and let your bike see the light of day

    Charlie6: I agree with you about a self propelled infernal combustion engine. The bike has no throttle and the main engine is getting old.

  15. BlueKat:

    thanks to you and your comment to Irondad and myself about the flat tires, you shamed me into getting my bike out. I used to be an avid cyclist but not so much when I got back to motorcycling. I still have my racing bike. I may also dust it off but for now little steps.

    My bike is a hybrid, sort of mountain bike frame but street tires. Heavy, not really suited for long distance.