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Old 04-18-07, 09:32 PM   #1
Monoborracho
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Hard Hat & Hard Tail

I've been absent from here for a week or so. Though not often, occasionally I have to do some field work. Last week our company field superintendent was on vacation, so I had to step back and supervise some drilling. It was 24 hour a day stuff, sleep when you can. This was a project that was three years in the planning. To reach under the Brazos river at 5000' deep we cut a location from the side of a rather steep slope and then drilled directionally. The hill behind the rig is the highest point within 40miles. Being the boss, I was able to take along my newly upgraded old Schwinn Mesa and ride the roads as opportunity arose. We have a great relationship with the landowner, who welcomed me to bike offroad wherever I was big enough to ride.

Its not often you get to bike on the job, but I was able to ride nearly every day. The pictures don't do it justice. One of the climbs was 400 feet in about 1/4 of a mile....like 25% grade. All in all I had about a 5 mile loop I could ride, which had at least 2000 feet of climbing. Switchbacks? No, they cost too much and tear up too much land, so we just build roads up and over, then grade them closed when we're finished and let nature get rid of them, which it usually does. I kept to the roads rather than going off on little used trails. I now have a new found respect for Stapfam and his mountain biking.

The view was spectacular for our little chunk of hill country here in NTx, with two big bends of the Brazos under a 300 foot bluff. Not much by some standards, but pretty nevertheless. Just wanted to share a few pictures with you guys. That last picture is the view I had out the front of my housing trailer. My apologies for some of the pic quality.
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Old 04-19-07, 06:20 AM   #2
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Great pics and story! I love that last picture............

Wow-bike while you work.......it can't get much better. Must help with the 24hr stuff!
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Old 04-19-07, 01:01 PM   #3
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Mountain bikings fun but can be hard work. Just imagine it though, Those pics look dry so imagine how much better it is when out as group and everyone is fighting for grip in the mud- going downhill with the brakes on and their bikes weigh 6lbs heavier with all the mud between the wheels and the frame giving just a bit of friction to hold things back just a bit more. But you with your bike set up for mud can get grip- you realise that braking downhill is a sure way to face plant, and for some reason- you still have energy when everyone else is flagging. Thats what 17 years of experience gives you- so try it for a few more years to see how good it can be.

Great pics and I wish I had been with you. What are you like on a Tandem?- Offroad one of course.
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Old 04-19-07, 02:50 PM   #4
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Dirt roads with no traffic - sounds like a great place to bike. Wish I could combine working and biking.
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Old 04-19-07, 06:59 PM   #5
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I love the Brazos. It is one of the Texas treasures. I am truly envious of your ride, but I can't say I envy the rig time. That is serious work. Can you get us more pics? Can you ride by the river?
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Old 04-20-07, 07:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monoborracho
Its not often you get to bike on the job, but I was able to ride nearly every day.
I just finished a 3-year assignment at a construction site and used my old bike to get around. Not nearly as exciting as your location, though.

The public relations lady took this photo to show that I was being environmentally responsible by using my bike rather than driving. Her boss thought it looked like I was playing.
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Old 04-20-07, 08:47 AM   #7
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I forgot that I didn't have to take my helmet...I could have just used my hardhat.

Seeing that pic reminds me that we kept bicycles on the flight line in the Air Force back in the 70's as the most convenient way to get around.

Maybe they still do.
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Old 04-20-07, 08:51 AM   #8
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I had to wear the hard hat because it was a construction site. It wouldn't have done me any good if I crashed my bike because it lacked a chin strap, but I guess it might have saved me if they dropped a heat exchanger from one of the tower cranes.
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