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Old 04-13-08, 05:55 PM   #1
FlyingAnchor
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My Good Son.

I have been commuting for awhile and last week I asked my 14 year old son if he would want to ride along with me to school. I felt I needed to scout the ride for awhile because most of it is along a hwy/freeway with fast traffic.
Well I asked my son to come along and he readily agreed. The first day he had a great ride of about eight miles, when we arrived at school where I teach and he attends he told me he "really really wanted to go along with me on my tour this summer across the USA" I was stunned to say the least.

Since that revelation we have ridden some more and he is wanting to increase the distance more and more, what a great motivation for me! I am so excited about this, and hoping to come up with the money I may even log some of my property to fund the trip.

Anyway, I am so pleased that he really likes riding and riding with me.

Steven
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Old 04-13-08, 07:12 PM   #2
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That's awesome! I hope that one day, when I have a son, he will want to ride with me. Or at least ride.
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Old 04-13-08, 07:32 PM   #3
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I wish I could get my lads interested! That is brilliant, you must be well chuffed.

My dad was never a keen/hardcore cyclist... but he did cycle a fair bit. When he got me my fist bike we used to go off for jaunts and some of my happiest memories of him are from that time.
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Old 04-13-08, 08:50 PM   #4
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What the hell's wrong with teenagers these days? In my day, kids would have rolled their eyes and ignored you.

Hope I can get my kids interested when they're old enough.
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Old 04-13-08, 09:21 PM   #5
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Thanks, I do have a good son, I'd use better adjectives but you all may think I am maudlin.

He likes his costco bike and I may talk him into riding the Torelli road bike after I convert it to a commuter for him.

Most of my problem is convincing my wife that a cross country bike trip for a 14 year old boy is not really to hard or dangerous. Especially if his dad is with him.

I am trying to get us a bent tandem or a tandem trike, I don't like the idea of us becoming separated on long uphills or downhills. We'll see.

Steven
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Old 04-13-08, 09:39 PM   #6
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Most of my problem is convincing my wife that a cross country bike trip for a 14 year old boy is not really to hard or dangerous. Especially if his dad is with him.
Steven, I know a guy where I live who took his 7 and 5 year old boys across the USA. Show your wife this. You two will be just fine.
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Old 04-13-08, 10:01 PM   #7
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I am trying to get us a bent tandem or a tandem trike, I don't like the idea of us becoming separated on long uphills or downhills. We'll see.

Steven
Teach him that he's not supposed to drop his old man on hills .

I second the metal cowboy - last month he gave a lecture at my local library about his trips, including a new one that he just completed with his wife and three kids, the youngest of whom was 1 y.o.

The best part of the lecture was when, after he described what he and his kids were doing to a woman in a minivan with kids the same age as his, her kids started saying "Mom, we want to ride across America, too!".
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Old 04-13-08, 10:11 PM   #8
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Thanks, I do have a good son, I'd use better adjectives but you all may think I am maudlin.

He likes his costco bike and I may talk him into riding the Torelli road bike after I convert it to a commuter for him.

Most of my problem is convincing my wife that a cross country bike trip for a 14 year old boy is not really to hard or dangerous. Especially if his dad is with him.

I am trying to get us a bent tandem or a tandem trike, I don't like the idea of us becoming separated on long uphills or downhills. We'll see.

Steven
Get him his own bike, it's more fun when he has the freedom to choose his own path, especially when you decide to hit some trails. Plus it's not too fun to stare at dad's ass for 3 months.

Just stay behind him at all times so you can keep an eye on him. Equip your bike with a pair of disc brakes or something so you can ride the brakes behind him on downhills.
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Old 04-13-08, 10:15 PM   #9
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I don't know about a 14 year old son with you on your cross country trip. What are you going to do when he hits his growth spurt and needs a new size bike half way through the trip?

Just kidding. It sounds like it would be a great trip.
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Old 04-13-08, 10:19 PM   #10
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Score!!!!

That's great! Before you get a Tandem though, check to see how he feels about it.
Why not take him on a testing trip to the LBS around, have a look at some trendy looking bikes that would do better on tour? I'm assuming his costco bikes is dual suspension and all the glitter?
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Old 04-13-08, 10:25 PM   #11
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14 is a really really good age for a trip like that -- your son is just coming into his adult ways of doing things, and having experience like that under his belt will give him so many resources to draw from as he faces the difficulty of sorting out who he is and would like to be.

That's just plain awesome.
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Old 04-14-08, 07:51 AM   #12
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What the hell's wrong with teenagers these days? In my day, kids would have rolled their eyes and ignored you.
Don't worry, things are still normal in Minnesota.
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Old 04-14-08, 08:18 AM   #13
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14? When I was his age, I worked in a factory 80 hrs a week to support my wife and three kids. Stop babying him and bring him along for the cross country trip. It's safer for both of you.
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Old 04-14-08, 08:37 AM   #14
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IAnyway, I am so pleased that he really likes riding and riding with me.

Steven

Enjoy it while it lasts. Kids migrate in and out of our shared areas of interest all the time.
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Old 04-14-08, 09:43 AM   #15
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Most of my problem is convincing my wife that a cross country bike trip for a 14 year old boy is not really to hard or dangerous. Especially if his dad is with him.
Fourteen is old enough to be close to fully grown but young enough to have no fear to tell him that something's impossible. Sounds like a good age for a cross-country bike trip to me. Besides, he might be fickle or pick up new hobbies and projects. Take the opportunity to have a summer together while you can, right?

For reference, when I was 14 I did a two week backpacking trip. Eight to ten mile days, 7k feet of total elevation change, and carrying something like 30% of my bodyweight in my pack. I wasn't too young, it wasn't too hard or anything like that. It was awesome.

No tandem though. I would have hated that. Hated.
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Old 04-14-08, 10:08 AM   #16
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14? When I was his age, I worked in a factory 80 hrs a week to support my wife and three kids. Stop babying him and bring him along for the cross country trip. It's safer for both of you.
Sounds like you were having a lot more fun than I was at 12 years of age...
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Old 04-14-08, 11:34 AM   #17
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I have been riding with two of my three sons off and on for years. The youngest, now 23 is just getting into riding. He and I will be doing the Erie Canal this summer.

The 14 year old should have his own bike. Recumbants and tandems are not cool for teens. Don't make him listen to oldies music either.
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Old 04-14-08, 03:08 PM   #18
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I WISH my dad was a cyclist (or even just active.) Sounds like your son has a good dad as well! You'll create a lot of great memories on that trip, don't forget the camera!
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Old 04-14-08, 04:49 PM   #19
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That sounds like a great trip - and the enthusiasm is terrific!

My 3rd grade son just saw a flier about an annual ride across California for 5th graders and their families sponsored by our local Y. He is totally psyched to try it - and did a Snoopy dance and "you're the best Mom EVER " when I said I would love to do it too. Looks like a good program for that age group - they do lots of training rides in the months leading up, plus have non-biking family members drive support vans with supplies so there's less to carry.

He has to wait for a whole year though, before he'll be old enough. I hope the enthusiasm holds!
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Old 04-14-08, 04:57 PM   #20
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This is the perfect bike for your kid..
http://www.gitabike.com/cgi-bin/shop...Ep8&0_option=1
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Old 04-14-08, 05:38 PM   #21
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I have tried to get my son to ride on a regular basis for years... Always provided good bikes... from when he was small to now, he has always had something decent to ride. (the last bike was a BMX bike... a bit small now)

It was always about image for him and skateboarding was "the thing" for locals here in So Cal...

But at the same time, he has always bragged about Dad to his friends... "oh yeah, my dad rides one of those bikes to work all the time... " and that sort of thing.

Well a couple weeks ago I "caught" him riding my fast race bike... with my clipless shoes. (he's almost 21 now). We had a little talk and he mentioned that he's been riding the other bikes from time to time... (my heart skipped a beat... ) And he had even ridden my wife's hard tail mountain bike and really liked it...

So his birthday is right around the corner... I just bought him a full suspension trail bike... he had a blast with it over the weekend and is clamoring for more. Maybe, just maybe... it's finally sinking in.
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Old 04-14-08, 05:52 PM   #22
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Well a couple weeks ago I "caught" him riding my fast race bike... with my clipless shoes. (he's almost 21 now). We had a little talk and he mentioned that he's been riding the other bikes from time to time... (my heart skipped a beat... ) And he had even ridden my wife's hard tail mountain bike and really liked it...
If i ever find my son riding my wife's hard tail, my heart would skip a beat too. He should be riding MY mountain bike.
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Old 04-14-08, 06:26 PM   #23
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Wonderful. What memories you'll have! My four year old is super excited to go on any ride around the block with dad, but I figure in 10 years he'll be too cool to hang out with me. I hope I'm wrong.
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Old 04-14-08, 08:03 PM   #24
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Steven thats really cool you are spending time with your son. My dad is shopping for a bicycle right now so he can cycle with me around the beach area here. We've been doing more of the golfing, fishing and outdoors stuff lately and its really been great.

I'm 26 and I've just really started to appreciate my dad the most now.
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Old 04-14-08, 09:30 PM   #25
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My sons current bike is, I think, a Votive, pretty basic all around bike. We were in a fairly local bike shop and were looking at A Cannondale commuter for about 500 bucks today. I may make him take the folder cross country, just to see if he can make it. (kidding)

I have disc brakes on my bent and I'll be jiggered if I want to apply the brakes coming off a hard won hill just to keep an eye on my son. I mentioned the tandom thing to him and he thought it was a great idea, then I mentioned the tandom trike thing and he was fine with that. This is the same kid that WANTED an old milk crate attached to his back rack for carrying books.

He is his fathers son, can you say FRED. Two years ago we went camping and mining in Oregon and he still talks about making roadkill out of thousands of rabbits on an old gravel road. (faulty memory)

My wife has agreed to let him go if we can come up with the money, blah..blah.. blah..... Good thing she trusts me.

Thanks for the encouragement and support it means a lot.

Steven
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