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  1. #2551
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by godshammgod View Post
    Just registered for the Outriders Ride from Boston to Ptown in June (http://www.outriders.org/).

    Will be my second year doing this great ride. Two of my other friends are going as well, which should be fun. Probably only one of two "organized" rides I'll do this year (the other will be the ECV Essex County Century in May).

    Just putting it out there in case anyone is interested. It's 70 bucks and really well supported and marked. Plus, who doesn't love riding to the Cape?
    G, Looks like a serious ride! 130 miles in June. Any idea how many ride? Peletons or tourists? I gather the rider can drop a bag at the start and pick it up in P Town. Showers and food at the finish? How do most folks return? From years of PMC rides, a bike truck and a bus are pretty convenient. This seems a little more casual and one should arrange a P town pick up or get there in time for a ferry back.
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  2. #2552
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    G, Looks like a serious ride! 130 miles in June. Any idea how many ride? Peletons or tourists? I gather the rider can drop a bag at the start and pick it up in P Town. Showers and food at the finish? How do most folks return? From years of PMC rides, a bike truck and a bus are pretty convenient. This seems a little more casual and one should arrange a P town pick up or get there in time for a ferry back.
    It is a pretty hefty ride. I did it last year despite being severely under-trained, and really enjoyed it still. Wind and rollers definitely wear you down during the latter half of the ride.

    Usually about 150 riders. It splits pretty evenly between pelotons versus more casual riders. Last year, my friend and I rode the first 40 or so miles with a large, fast pack. After that there were smaller pacelines. In general though, all the riders were really friendly, etc. Definitely not a hammerhead/ego type atmosphere, even in the large groups.

    They do have a bag drop, which is GREAT. However, no shower facilities. It is pretty casual. Some people stay the night after the ride. But, my friend and I hopped on an 8:30 ferry back to Boston. We finished around 4:30/5:00ish so we had some nice downtime before heading back.

  3. #2553
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Didn't get free to ride until 4 o'clock. By the time I got to Arlington Center, I realized that I hadn't dressed for conditions--my kit was a little too much "cool weather" on a breezy day on the boundary between cool and cold. Doubling back and changing put me back on the road at 4:30. After that false start, I rode out the Minuteman. The low sun striped the path with tree-trunk shadows like bar codes, creating the familiar stroboscopic effect and evoking John Lincoln Wright's "Horizon Line", one of the best road songs ever.


    The same low sun vividly illuminated the bare trees on their sunny side, Nature's own high-definition display.


    When I got to Depot Park, Bedford, I knew my original Carlisle-Concord route intentions had run afoul of the time lost at the beginning of the ride. Plan B was to start back on the Minuteman, take a left on Wiggins Avenue, then hop onto Preston Court and cross the Shawsheen River on the Bridge Street Path's small pedestrian bridge (a.k.a., the Preston Court Worm-hole). This turned out to be in good, rideable condition.


    The Shawsheen was running high from the end-of-the-thaw run-off, but was not in flood.


    From there, followed Bridge Street and Shawsheen Road to Page Road, and headed East. That got me a staged climb up a significant hill, pleasantly warming. Near the top, I noted that the "Please don't squish my chickens!" sign has been taken down, though the hub caps are still nailed to the fence. Hope this doesn't signify one more unwanted change. Crossing the Lexington line, Page Road becomes Grove street. I stopped at the top of the hill to look back West and take a picture.


    I enjoyed a brisk descent on Grove Street, missing 30 mph by .4 only because I maintained a relatively upright position on the bike to scan the pavement for damage wreaked by the Winter's insults; as it happens, I needn't have bothered, the pavement is in fine shape. This was the first time this season that I've ridden this hill, expect I'll return to it soon. 23 miles (including the false start) through Arlington, Lexington, and Bedford, with 1486' of elevation gain.

    On the ride out, I had been thrilled by numerous red-wing blackbirds calling in Tophet Swamp. That's a harbinger of Spring, cold weather or no. As I rode back through Arlington's Great Meadows in the fading light, there was no mistaking that critters (frogs? bugs? birds?) were adding volume and complexity to the pale hints of the Night Chorus that I'd heard on rides over the last few weeks. Hurrah!

    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 03-17-13 at 07:26 AM.

  4. #2554
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Lesser harbingers.
    I rode my first 37 mile loop de loop sherborndoverwestwooddovermedfielddoversherborn of the year. The only black ice was in Sherborn where the Rocky Narrow Conservation Land upper field drains across the Forest St to the lower field.

    The sparrows, tufted titmouse, chickadees, junkos and grackles were rustling in the rhodies about the upcoming weather, a few crows swooped over as I rode and a deer was unimpressed with my finish. Nice to get out
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  5. #2555
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Got out ahead of the snow this evening for a cold, dark, breezy 10 miles on the Minuteman. A contemplative ride. Passed an old couple chatting amiably in Mandarin as they walked the trail together: bai tou dao lao.

    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 03-20-13 at 07:23 AM.

  6. #2556
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    Commuting was fun today - maybe the wind and sleet were a little annoying, but there's nothing going through the slush on slight knobbles and totally not caring. Next winter I'm going to buy some good over-glasses ski goggles.

  7. #2557
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Rode out the Minuteman to Lexington Center at the end of the day, 10 miles. At the turn-around point, a delicate peaches-and-plums sunset was in progress that illuminated my rear-view mirror for much of the return ride. The temperature dropped through the 30s over the course of the ride; it wasn't freezing when I was out, but was definitely headed in that direction. The critters singing in the darkness to their inamorata were still at it tonight; yesterday's snow seemed to have slowed them up not at all.

    The Minuteman, at least between Arlington Center and Lexington Center, was well-plowed, mostly bare, dry pavement with some wet spots that will have turned to black ice by morning. I encountered two stubborn ice patches under bridges, a small one at Lowell Street, Arlington, and a larger one at Maple Street, Lexington. There was a large, deep puddle at Season's Four that will be more fun in the morning, when it has a skin of ice.

    Near Pierce Field, an Nstar bucket truck was parked square in the Trail, lights flashing, with an lineman working on a transformer up in the tree branches.


    After threading around the truck, I encountered two young men about 30 yards further on, standing on the trail-edge having a whiz in the snow. That was the last display of utilitarian expedience of the evening, and I rode home without further incident.

    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 03-20-13 at 09:03 PM.

  8. #2558
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    IMAG0118.jpgnot exactly a ride report but a bike report! just picked up a Trek Domane 4.5

    only 10 mile or so today, but it ride like a Cadillac (inagoodway)
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

  9. #2559
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    mtalinm, that looks like quite a bike. Enjoy!

    rod

  10. #2560
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    Quote Originally Posted by rholland1951 View Post
    mtalinm, that looks like quite a bike. Enjoy!

    rod
    Ditto.

    Looks beautiful in the snow too!

  11. #2561
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    thanks! it's Trek's Roubaix-killer. and if the reviews are to be believed, it just might be...they developed it for/with Fabian Cancellara, who rides the cobblestones and another nasty roads (like my commute into Boston!). had to drive my kid to school this morning but will try the full commute tmw!
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

  12. #2562
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtalinm View Post
    thanks! it's Trek's Roubaix-killer. and if the reviews are to be believed, it just might be...they developed it for/with Fabian Cancellara, who rides the cobblestones and another nasty roads (like my commute into Boston!). had to drive my kid to school this morning but will try the full commute tmw!
    Fabian!
    Be careful! I rode my long distance speedy bike yesterday with rubber banded plastic fenders and came back pretty road-gritted up. You sure you're ready to expose Domane Mtalinm outdoors in Metro Boston March?road grit march13.jpg
    Last edited by sherbornpeddler; 03-21-13 at 09:43 AM. Reason: text
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  13. #2563
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    woke up with a sore throat, so the first commute is postponed until Monday :-(

    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    Fabian!
    Be careful! I rode my long distance speedy bike yesterday with rubber banded plastic fenders and came back pretty road-gritted up. You sure you're ready to expose Domane Mtalinm outdoors in Metro Boston March?road grit march13.jpg
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

  14. #2564
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    anyone else waiting patiently for wells ave to start up? got postponed again this week.

  15. #2565
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UMassAm View Post
    anyone else waiting patiently for wells ave to start up? got postponed again this week.
    This black ice and wet, slippery sand must make early Spring racing difficult. I didn't realize the season started so early. Where do you train?
    It is nice to have such an institution as the Wells Ave races. I've seen the Hub on Wheels crits around City Hall and would like to get over to see Wells Ave. racing. Close quarter racing is certainly a whole different skill than a few local time trial and triathlon races. Have a great season!
    Life is like riding a bicycle. In order to keep your balance, you must keep moving. ~Albert Einstein

  16. #2566
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    We awoke the tandem from its nap and rode the MM Bedford to Alewife and back, about 20 miles.

    Continuing east from Arlington Center:



    Stopped for a snack in Lexington. We wondered if anything lives in there:

    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  17. #2567
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    29 miles through Arlington, Lexington, Bedford, and Billerica today, 2732' elevation gain. Left a bit after 11, rode out the Minuteman as far as Revere Street, Lexington, then made my way via Hancock Street and Burlington Street to Grove Street, across Rt 128 (with no ramps), and up the big hill. Just beyond the top, crossed the Lexington-Bedford line where Grove Street becomes Page Road and narrows. Stopped here to photograph the collection of lost hubcaps hanging from the fence at Susan Corey's farm, one of her monuments to the folly of those who bomb up and down the hill at 40 mph (the famous "Please Don't Squish My Chickens" sign is another; that's down at the moment, for whatever reason).


    Bombed down the hill myself, with a cold head-wind that limited my top speed to 27 mph, real air-brakes. Squished no chickens. Crossed the Shawsheen River, and continued on Page Road to the intersection with Springs Road, and headed North on that. Springs Road runs through the extensive Bedford VA Hospital campus. I'm used to seeing that from the back, riding up the Narrow Gauge Rail Trail; that was covered with snow today.


    Springs Road is agreeably twisting and hilly, but has a few holes in it: a rough patch shook loose a tail light, which I noticed, fortunately, recovered, and reattached. Rode past the Middlesex Community College campus, the Springs Brook swimming area (wrong season for that), and Fawn Circle, its mansion a tacit connection to the mineral spring for which Springs Road is named, a famous and profitable spa in an earlier era. Crossed the Bedford-Billerica line towards the North end. Springs Road terminates at Concord Road; took that North to Dudley Road. Where Dudley Road crosses Nashua Road (Route 4), stopped to admire the Job Hill Cemetery. The Town of Billerica would like to remind us that if we aren't dead, or have business with the dead, we can get a big ticket for getting up to monkey business there.


    Dudley Road is a favorite haunt... oops, slip of the tongue, the stories about the haunted convent are bogus; it's really nun of the above.


    Continued as the road crossed back into Bedford, and bumped along the at-times-crocodilian pavement that defends Dudley Road's treasures: deep old Massachusetts history*, stretching well back into the the 17th Century, some of it preserved in a state park, some in a scattering of architectural gems, some simply in names, land-forms, and stories, some, like the chestnut trees destroyed when Huckins Farm was developed, gone and fading from memory (the demonstrations against that seem to be in the Google Shadow, can't find a link to 'em). This is my favorite short ride, there's a lot packed into it.


    Dudley Road wound back South and East and terminated at Route 4. Took that South to Pine Hill Road, and followed that East; at the Springs Road intersection, it becomes Page Road again. Did the staged hill climb back up, and then charged down Grove Street in Lexington. Hit 31 mph this time, the tail-wind and the smooth pavement helped, then back to the Minuteman and home. Despite the wintry conditions, there was lots more bird song--from more species--than a couple of weeks ago. Spring may come yet.

    rod


    * Dudley Road history starts on page 4 of the linked PDF.
    Last edited by rholland1951; 03-25-13 at 07:50 AM.

  18. #2568
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Rode out to Lexington Center and back on the Minuteman at the end of the day, 10 miles. While the worst of today's weather passed to the South, marching clouds and a gusty and confused wind dominated the gestalt of this ride.


    For reasons meteorological, physiological, and psychological, in whatever proportion, the section of the ride after dark was phantasmagorical, with lots of little transient manifestations, both visual and aural: one of the spookier night rides.

    rod

  19. #2569
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    I got out for a few miles on the Blackstone Bikeway. Nothing phantasmagoricalistic, but I didn't get wet only because the water falling from the sky was of a form that would bounce.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  20. #2570
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Minuteman to Lexington Center, 10 miles, cool, bright, clear, breezy, with enough clouds to give structure to the sunset.


    Saw a bat hunting.

    rod

  21. #2571
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^Great pic Rod! ^^^^^^^^^^^^^

  22. #2572
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    After living vicariously through you guys these past weeks, I was finally able to get out for a couple of out and backs to Concord the past couple of days.

    Felt great to be on the road, and not riding the trainer in front of a monitor going nowhere.


    Felt like this guy for the first few climbs...DB.jpg





    Even this guy passed me on Concord Ave. IMG_0305.jpg





    Saw the Super Guppy at Hanscom. IMG_0306.jpg




    Tried drafting behind these guys from "Team Turkey". IMG_0309.jpg

  23. #2573
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    Quote Originally Posted by sherbornpeddler View Post
    This black ice and wet, slippery sand must make early Spring racing difficult. I didn't realize the season started so early. Where do you train?
    It is nice to have such an institution as the Wells Ave races. I've seen the Hub on Wheels crits around City Hall and would like to get over to see Wells Ave. racing. Close quarter racing is certainly a whole different skill than a few local time trial and triathlon races. Have a great season!
    It's a lot of fun. It actually really wasn't as difficult/scary as I had anticipated. The speeds were high, but you just need to follow the right wheel and you'll be fine. I'm also a bigger guy, so maybe I was better suited to the tighter racing, bumping, etc.

    Despite all that, I never really seriously got into racing. If I had started when I was younger, or in college I probably would have stuck with it. But, at this point in my life I'm just more concerned with riding for fun/fitness or the occasional feisty group ride.

    By the way, watching the "A" race at Wells is incredible-- and humbling-- about an hour averaging 25-27+ miles an hour. I may actually mosey on down there and spectate a few Sundays this season. I live about 5 minutes away (downhill!) so there's really no excuse not to go and at least watch. If anyone wants to meet up to go watch and then ride slowly after just let me know!

  24. #2574
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bishbike View Post

    Saw the Super Guppy at Hanscom. IMG_0306.jpg



    Wow! A rare bird, indeed!

    from Space.com:
    The plane is slated to bring the Orion Heat Shield from Textron Defense Systems near Boston to NASA's Kennedy Space Center at the end of March.
    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 03-28-13 at 08:14 AM.

  25. #2575
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Out to Lexington Center this evening, 10 miles, riding through the cool darkness and listening to the Night Chorus tune up for Spring.



    A couple of bunnies crossed my path, but laid no eggs.

    rod

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