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Old 08-29-10, 08:43 AM   #501
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Originally Posted by bikinggrrrl View Post
Did anyone else notice an odd odor the first dry day after all the rains? Rich, earthy smoky smell. Not woodfire smoke, but more of a chipotle pepper kind of smokiness. Perhaps something is blooming ... or rotting?
Hey! Very, very cool observation! I did notice and I bet you're right; drying out wood rot. Duck, tattooed poultry and smoky air are fantastic Metrowest finds.
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Old 08-29-10, 04:56 PM   #502
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Was able to get out and roll a nice 65 mile ride, I love the weather when it's hot. Left from Westminster threw Princeton, W.Boylston, Clinton, Lancaster, Leominster, Fitchburg, Westminster, Ashburnham, and home to Winchendon. This summer has been great weather wise, hope it lasts well into the fall.
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Old 08-29-10, 06:40 PM   #503
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Zipp, You are going to love this week.
That sounds like a fantastic ride. I imagine it is very hilly. How is the traffic and pavement?
I do OK in the heat but definitely slow down. My percieved work seems fine but times on a known route are slower.
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Old 08-29-10, 07:21 PM   #504
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I have stuff to do Monday but the rest of the week should be some great riding. You can always find some good hilly rides in Central Mass., which for a heavy rider like me it makes it that much more fun. I never notice the traffic to much when riding, always get into my rides. New England roads haven't been as bad as in past years, lots of repaved roads out there. I always ride better in the heat, my legs really like to work hard the hotter it gets.
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Old 08-29-10, 08:53 PM   #505
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I saw your bike. I tend to notice the machine underneath more than the cyclists themselves.
(a) I tend to notice redheads.
(b) You were riding a bike?
(c) There goes that self-image illusion shattered.
(d) All of the above.


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Did anyone else notice an odd odor the first dry day after all the rains? Rich, earthy smoky smell.
Uh, I was riding by Great Brook Farm, remember? What I smelled wouldn't normally be described as rich, earthy, or smoky. Nor all that odd for a farm either.


Yeah, it was an awesome day!
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Old 08-29-10, 08:57 PM   #506
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Left from Westminster threw Princeton, W.Boylston, Clinton, Lancaster, Leominster, Fitchburg, Westminster, Ashburnham, and home to Winchendon.
Wow. More up than down, and less than 3 miles flat, I betcha'. Well, parts of Winchendon maybe. Nah...
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Old 08-29-10, 10:44 PM   #507
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Did anyone else notice an odd odor the first dry day after all the rains? Rich, earthy smoky smell. Not woodfire smoke, but more of a chipotle pepper kind of smokiness. Perhaps something is blooming ... or rotting?
Another odor is grapes. They are early this year but I catch a waft of Concord Grapes several times a ride. I hear apples are early as well.
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Old 08-30-10, 12:37 PM   #508
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Another great day.
stopped to snap a picture of the cow tunnel, ate some wild grapes, inspected Phase II of the Milford part of the Upper Charles River Rail Trail and stopped at LBS for new chain rings. I just replaced my front derailleur 2 days ago.. I'm psyched. It's like a new bike!
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Old 08-30-10, 02:20 PM   #509
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Another great day.
stopped to snap a picture of teh cow tunnel, ate some wild grapes, inspected Phase II of the Milford part of the Upper Charles River Rail Trail and stopped at LBS for new chain rings. I just replaced my front derailleur 2 days ago.. I'm psyched. It's like a new bike!
I've had occasion recently to go through Milford. Would the LBS be the one in Milford? Also I've noted the existence of a bike path entrance in, oh I dunno', maybe Hudson. Izzat it?

And what did you do to your FD???
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Old 08-31-10, 01:11 PM   #510
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The front derailleur plain wore out so the outer side of the cage that shoves the chain wore knife thin and finally gave out. The bike shop is Grace, also on RT 16 but in Holliston.

The rail trail in Holliston is dealing with a different railroad company and making progress http://www.townofholliston.us/hollis...ils/index.html but Milford's part http://www.milford.ma.us/trail/index.htm of the Upper Charles River Rail Trail will be completed sooner.

The entrances for the completed northern half in Milford is Dunkin Donuts on Rt 16 in the center and at the Hopkinton town line on Deer St next to Rt 85.

The new section goes from the back of Zain Circle (off Rt 16 at the Holliston town line) crosses Beaver St right just west of Rt 495 and heads on into the center of Milford.

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Old 08-31-10, 08:01 PM   #511
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I have to be back by noon so this may not be the weekend. Any and all interested in a swing through Holliston and tour of the Bullard Farm Cow tunnel are welcome. Maybe meet at a central point (Wellesley?, Dover?) and bike over and around or alternatively originate a ride from Holliston or Sherborn.
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Count me in. Details can be worked out later...
Perhaps it is time to start working out some details.

Saturday may be a bit windy and possibly wet too depending on whose prediction you choose to live by. Otherwise any day this weekend will do for me.

I can drive anywhere within reason and provided we don't start at oh-dark-thirty. Mid-mornings are good. I can take a second person easily, starting in or near Waltham, Lexington, Arlington, Newton, Weston, etc. (If I new what to do with the bikes other than stash them in the back somehow, my Caravan could take more people.) sbp, you're in charge of the route, I believe. If there is a state park nearby I can drop my wife off so she can explore while I'm riding. Any reasonable distance under 12 parsecs is good, and speed under Warp 2.5, or maybe Warp 1.7...

MacCruiskeen, Bikinggrrrl, anyone else, are you in for a Cow Tunnel Cruise? sbp, are you still available and interested?
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Old 08-31-10, 08:23 PM   #512
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Interested, launching from the Lancaster/Clinton venue, more than willing to shlep as many as can fit into the Xterra!
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Old 08-31-10, 09:00 PM   #513
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Earl vs. Tunnel

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Saturday may be a bit windy and possibly wet too depending on whose prediction you choose to live by. Otherwise any day this weekend will do for me. sbp, are you still available and interested?
I'm very happy to put together a tour but I previously committed to an all day ride Saturday, moved to Sunday or Monday in the event of rain. Monday morning is probably the best bet for this ride but there is still some risk either I bail out or ask to flip the date at the last minute. The following weekend I'm ok Sunday.

Preferences for distance?
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Old 08-31-10, 09:48 PM   #514
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Theres still plenty of "season" left in the year for us MASSHOLES.... Maybe a fall tour in early OCT when the ride numbing splender of the Concords has passed!!!!
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Old 09-01-10, 05:45 AM   #515
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MacCruiskeen, Bikinggrrrl, anyone else, are you in for a Cow Tunnel Cruise? sbp, are you still available and interested?
My riding schedule is still dictated by nap schedule of my son, so I will enjoy the tour through your stories and pictures. Lots of those, please!
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Old 09-01-10, 05:49 AM   #516
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how did I miss this?

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(a) I tend to notice redheads.
(b) You were riding a bike?
(c) There goes that self-image illusion shattered.
(d) All of the above.
But your bike is such a pretty color, JM! How could I not be blinded by it?
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Old 09-01-10, 01:07 PM   #517
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hot hot HOT. Did the Sherman Bridge loop and it was fine as long as we kept moving. Waiting for red lights was torture.
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Old 09-01-10, 05:31 PM   #518
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I'm very happy to put together a tour but...
Preferences for distance?
Dang, the Cow Tunnel Cruise is becoming problematic for this weekend, I'm afraid. Even though it was my idea in the first place I have to beg off due to domestic commitments. I will get to do some biking, probably with a friend on the Blackstone River path in RI, but I don't know what day it will be. However the following weekend may work.

This means sbp doesn't have to worry about the weather on Saturday either. (Accuweather says it will be okay. Weather.gov says 30% chance of precip. So we checked Intellicast as a tie-breaker and they voted for okay, last time I checked. It still seems iffy.)

As for distance, I'm happy with anything. Something around 50 miles is good, would be happy with a little as 25. Of course it depends on the terrain and the temperature and when we can start. I'd be willing to do 75 under the right conditions. But it doesn't have to be a distance ride.
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Old 09-01-10, 06:57 PM   #519
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I'd be very interested in a group ride, any distance is fine with me. I'll meet up wherever you decide would enjoy meetting you folks.

Hey dmann if you want to ride out in your area give me a yell. I get out at 4:30pm and am right on the Leominster / Lancaster line. I ride out your
way on all my rides, so if you have time soon lets get together.
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Old 09-01-10, 09:20 PM   #520
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Sunday 12 September might work for a Cow Tunnel and Environs Group Ride.

Today was a different day for me. I rode the last of the season Dover Time Trial. http://www.markdionne.com/tt.html For the last 16 years two guys, Mark and Karol, have hosted this event and this time Mark couldn't make it. I got to be the time keeper's assistant and race before the race. For a small pond bike enthusiast this is like going inside the Green Monster with the score board guy, sweeping the parquet at the old Boston Garden or reset pins at the Museum of Science earth rotation clock.

Some of Metro Boston's fastest and not so fast show up with the most exotic bikes and garb and some took the panniers off on the way home from work. It is a blast and very different from my usual touring.
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Old 09-02-10, 06:22 AM   #521
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(interrupting group ride discussion, sorry!)

Hey, I'm a newbie thread member, rider and Bostonian (originally from DC). I'll be commuting to class mostly on the Minuteman Commuter Bikeway (I'm sure you locals have a better name for it than that!). I rode it for the first time yesterday -- and it's gorgeous. I had heard that DC's Capital Crescent Trail was exceptional, but I guess there's nothing wrong with what you guys have got!

Any good bike shops in the area that I should really try to frequent? I just got a vintage custom bike from my mother, and want to find a good shop that will help me through the process of fixing it back to perfect shape and learning about my bike. I live in Lexington, if that helps. Thanks!
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Old 09-02-10, 06:30 AM   #522
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Sunday 12 September might work for a Cow Tunnel and Environs Group Ride.
Alas, not for me. We have to play a show (a free show at a garden center which would be a good bike destination)
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Old 09-02-10, 06:46 AM   #523
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Hey, I'm a newbie thread member, rider and Bostonian (originally from DC). I'll be commuting to class mostly on the Minuteman Commuter Bikeway (I'm sure you locals have a better name for it than that!). I rode it for the first time yesterday -- and it's gorgeous. I had heard that DC's Capital Crescent Trail was exceptional, but I guess there's nothing wrong with what you guys have got!

Any good bike shops in the area that I should really try to frequent? I just got a vintage custom bike from my mother, and want to find a good shop that will help me through the process of fixing it back to perfect shape and learning about my bike. I live in Lexington, if that helps. Thanks!
First, welcome to Boston. You'll find it a nice place (as long as you don't mind winter).

As far as I know, the Minuteman is just called "the Minuteman" or "the Minuteman bike path". It is pretty nice, innit?

Nice bike. I've been reading your "what is this?" thread. Nice to see the pics. Don't know what it is and can't judge the frame or weight from those pics but it sure looks good. Put some toe clips and straps on it and it would be a great "C&V" road bike, I bet!

As for bike shops, the traditional shop for older bikes would be Harris Cyclery in West Newton. They have a good supply of parts for older bikes but sometimes I find them frustrating. Maybe that's just me. There are plenty of others. Lexington has Ride Studio, a combination bike shop and deli right in Lexington Center. They focus on very high-end bike. There's a shop in Bedford across the road at the end of the Minuteman but I've never been in there. Belmont Wheelworks is in Waverley Square, generally more modern-bike-focused but good and very busy. Wheelworks has three locations but I don't recall whee the other two are. There's a shop in Waltham called Spoke'n'wheel, I think, one of three (one of which is Sudbury, I think). Good friendly shops, very cluttered! There are plenty more further in town, in Cambridge, Somerville, Boston, etc.

If you haven't discovered it yet, there are bike paths along the Charles from Watertown, actually, parts of Waltham, into Cambridge and Boston. One side fo the river is formally called the Paul Dudley White Bikepath but I wonder if that name has been forgotten. Unfortunately those "paths" are bumpy in spots and used by bikes and pedestrians, so you have to use them carefully. However they are a good way to get to downtown Boston or Cambridge.

Welcome to Boston!
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Old 09-02-10, 07:07 AM   #524
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Thanks for the response! I saw the Charles paths driving yesterday, it looks like it could be quite nice, at least around Fresh Pond. And I actually took the toe-clips and straps off, until I become a little more comfortable mounting and dismounting (yeah, I know...this is the first time I've had a high enough seat, and boy does it feel different!).

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As for bike shops, the traditional shop for older bikes would be Harris Cyclery in West Newton. They have a good supply of parts for older bikes but sometimes I find them frustrating.
Any reason you found the Harris Cyclery frustrating? If it's an attitude thing, I'd rather go to a friendly shop...

Anyways, thanks for your help so far!
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Old 09-02-10, 07:34 AM   #525
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Any reason you found the Harris Cyclery frustrating? If it's an attitude thing, I'd rather go to a friendly shop...
It isn't an attitude thing. They are quite friendly and also pretty competent. An example though: I went in to get some cotter pins for my old Peugeot's steel crankset. I had not measured them, my mistake. The guy gave me what he guessed were appropriate, something he called "French standard". I got them home and found them too small. So I measured the hole in my crank arms and went back. The guy was surprised a little but traded them for the correct size, 9mm, and said he'd never known a Peugeot that used 9mm. I would have expected a shop that makes a point of supporting older bikes to also maintain this sort of cultural knowledge, especially considering that UO-8's were as common as Chevy's in the 70's. So they are a curious combination of having the parts and wanting to do the right thing but not really being as savvy as they'd like to be. So when you want some technical solution that is out of the ordinary, they may have the parts but they are not much better than any other shop at giving the necessary advice to go with it. In one sense it was my mistake, but I at least have a caliper to measure things and more than average technical skill. Your average non-techie bike rider would be lost in such a situation. I have other similar experiences with them along the same vein where I'd end up making two trips, once to find a solution then again to find the correct one. But I'll support them anyway.
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Honking a car horn is a privilege, not a right.
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