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  1. #1951
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    radar2.jpg
    Rode out to the Haystack Observatory today. I declare this a mandatory ride if you live in the metro boston area. Very cool huge radar domes and antennae. It was much too hot for this; My friend and I did it as part of an 80mile loop. Ran out of fluids at mild 25, didn't pass another store until around mile 40. Lost 12 pounds (drank 8lbs, scale showed a 4lb different when I got home).

    I used this loop out of Lexington:
    http://ridewithgps.com/routes/1046391

    Its a very nice route with a lot of short hills, one longer hill, and lots of very rural car-free roads!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #1952
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    10 miles after work on the Minuteman, starting to cool but still hot enough to command attention. Encountered two thermal prodigies: one was a guy riding a bike wearing a parka and long pants, who passed me at a good clip in Arlington Center; guess he was cold. The other was a couple riding together on a single mountain bike, she seated on a rear rack (strong rack) clutching him from behind, he pedaling grimly; looked hot, and neither seemed particularly comfortable. I passed them later in that little park at Bow Street, off the bike and in a seriously smootchy embrace. Love may make you stupid, but at least it keeps you warm.

    rod

  3. #1953
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Was able to bag work early today, and set out a bit before 3, when the thermometer was showing 96 in E. Arlington, for a 35-mile ride through Arlington, Lexington, Bedford, and Billerica. Given the heat, kept the pace to a gentle spin, drank water at about twice the usual rate, and enjoyed the ubiquitous breeze and the shade on the Minuteman and Narrow-Gauge Trails on the way out.

    The first destination was Fawn Lake, in Bedford.

    This was a Victorian spa, capitalizing on the healing powers of water from springs on the site. Some reminders of that period remain, notably a pharmaceutical factory converted to condos.

    Took a Town of Bedford path to Fawn Circle, then followed Springs Road past Middlesex Community College to Orchard Road. Orchard Road crosses Rt. 3 without a ramp, making it one of those golden connections for stitching together rides between territories divided by limited-access highways. This deposited me in Billerica, on the South side of Nutting Lake.

    Nutting Lake was a middle-class resort in the first half of the 20th century, and was originally ringed by summer cottages. Over time, these were winterized, and development radiated out from this core. The original dominant house form was the one-story bungalow, but a mish-mosh of styles are evident, including a log cabin. Crossed the Middlesex Turnpike to the North edge of the lake, noting as I did the private beach and road houses offering their hospitality. Worked my way further South and East, and ended up exploring the roads that fringe the North bank of the Shawsheen River. Came upon a likely trail at the end of Shawsheen Road, but a discouraging sign gave me pause.

    In fact, I did hear gunfire from several directions during this part of the ride. What's the season for cyclists?

    Continuing on Shawsheen Road and Riverside Road, got several good views of this section of the Shawsheen River flood plain.

    As I was checking out the Shawsheen, a neighbor's German shepherd (the "German police dog" of my South Georgia childhood) was checking me out, decided he didn't like what he saw, and became hysterical. I figured that was Nature's way to telling me it was time to stop gawking at the river, and pedaled back up the hill. A few blocks previous, I had been vigorously addressed by a black-and-tan hound, who belled beautifully. This neighborhood, between Nutting Lake and the Shawsheen, is the real home ground for Middlesex County's yeomanry. The houses are close together and highly individualized, the yards sporting whirly-gigs, Harleys, boats on blocks, boats on trailers, and every kind of work van, truck, and trailer ever seen, advertising contracting services ranging from lawn care to "organized paint-ball parties". This is a place where people get things done and don't put on airs, that has grown up organically over the last hundred years.

    On my way back, I took a side trip on Wyman Road, which had an 18th-century farmhouse that hinted at a prior rural-Yankee epoch (painted salmon pink for some reason; strangely, it worked) and dead-ended at conservation land, with a trail leading in. No signs warning about other people's marksmanship on this one, so I rode in. After a bit of riding through the greenery, I came to a mysterious gate, looking somewhat the worse for wear.

    Between the avid mosquitoes, the darkening skies promising weather, and a suspicion that the best I'd get out of humping my LHT past this barrier was a connection with the Middlesex Turnpike at a point that wasn't especially convenient, I turned around and back-tracked on Wyman to Lexington Road, taking that South and West across the Middlesex Pike, where it became Old Billerica Road in Bedford, continuing across Route 3 (once again, no ramps). Picked up the Narrow-Gauge Trail again, and retraced my steps home.

    Rain drops started falling in Bedford, a gentle thundershower; after Lexington Center things got a little wetter and noisier, but it was pleasant to ride in the rain after all that heat.

    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 06-23-12 at 02:43 PM.

  4. #1954
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JandersUF View Post
    Rode out to the Haystack Observatory today. I declare this a mandatory ride if you live in the metro boston area.
    Amen!

    rod

  5. #1955
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    My sweetie told me I could take the Masi out today, it being a solo bike instead of our tandem. As I was prepping the bike in the front yard my neighbor asks "Are you coming or going?" I said I was just going. He said "Give me 15 minutes and I'll join you." So he grabbed his lugged-steel frame Serrota and we rode off! 44.5 miles, more than he was used to doing on his early morning sprints, not quite as far as I was hoping for, but respectable. We did it faster than I usually ride. I'm usually more comfortable riding with no one around me!

    Waltham, Lexington (by the route Larry usually drives it), Bedford, Concord, Carlisle, Bedford, Lexington, home in Waltham. Not a bad day.

    Had one flat, my first in these expensive Vitorria Open Corsa EVO SC tires. Picked up a small sliver of glass. Still, running at 145psi has its advantages! I fixed it and we moved on...
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  6. #1956
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    I feel like I just went on that ride with Rod. Thanks so much for the photos and commentary.
    I have been squeezing in a ride or two here and there. June is busy month for me.

    Managed to get the Sherman Bridge loop in on Father's day while the little guy sang songs behind me in the trailer. It is nice to know that he can indeed sit still for long periods of time when strapped down, because he never stops moving the rest of the time. I love the delightful, "WoooHooooo" yells as we plummet down the hills. Makes me smile. Every . Single . Time

    Last Sunday we got the shorter Carlisle/Concord/Bedford/Maple street loop in but came up behind a small group of cyclists, one of which had fallen off and hit the pavement on 225 in Bedford, just past the gas station. He looked shaken, not stirred, while waiting for ambulance, fire trucks and police detail to be sent. Reminds me that I should be grateful for each and every ride, especially those when nothing awful happens.

    Ride safe, my friends.

    Um. Just as a heads up to those metro-Boston riders who like to pass through Carlisle. This coming Saturday (June 30) is our Old Home Day. Road race at 7:30am and Parade at 10:00. Place will be a cluster%^&* for the earlier morning riders so you might want to seek alternative routes from 10 - 11. Our town is tiny so the parade won't last long. Even though it will start late, because it always does, by 11 you should be able to pass through unimpeded with the exception of pedestrians. Ferns and Kimballs will be open for business all day but if you are passing through in the late afternoon, the Fireman's barbeque is the place to eat. I won't be cycling that day but you can find me on the lawn of the library.
    ~Kat

  7. #1957
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    No riding today (yet) or yesterday but we did take the tandem out on Sunday. After Sharon let me out on the Masi on Saturday she wanted to try for a metric century on Sunday. So we did, 62.6 miles in fact! And several picnic stops.

    BKG, as we were riding north across the bridge over the beaver bog on Maple St we were passed by two tandems, one going each way. Some sort of cosmic convergence occurred, I guess. All three of us on the bridge at one time. Fortunately the bridge held up okay.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  8. #1958
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    My wife and I celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary on Sunday by getting her back on a bike. Drove out to Concord and we rode the Strawberry Hill loop out to Great Brook Farm for some ice cream, and to feed the sheep and goats. Wish we had brought a camera. Then off to Yamato in Brighton for all you can eat sushi. Ben at Wheelworks did an excellent job setting my honey up with a Trek Lexa SL. She loves the bike, and we are looking forward to riding many miles together.

    Today did 57 miles with lots of climbing (1467ft). Sky looked threatening the whole ride, but managed to stay dry.

  9. #1959
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bishbike View Post
    My wife and I celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary on Sunday by getting her back on a bike.
    Happy Anniversary! Well done! May you have many more years and miles together!
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
    jimmuller

  10. #1960
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmuller View Post
    Happy Anniversary! Well done! May you have many more years and miles together!
    Thanks Jim!

  11. #1961
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmuller View Post
    BKG, as we were riding north across the bridge over the beaver bog on Maple St we were passed by two tandems, one going each way. Some sort of cosmic convergence occurred, I guess. All three of us on the bridge at one time. Fortunately the bridge held up okay.
    How cool is that! I see more and more of them around these days. Isn't it a great way to share cycling with your spouse?
    ~Kat

  12. #1962
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    20 miles out to Depot Park, Bedford, after work, 91 to start, 86 by the finish. First ride in a week, due to various Real-Life Interrupts. Tweaked my seat height for the third time since switching to Summer shoes; better. Encountered a rider who resembled the Geico gecko, but a little cuter.

    rod

  13. #1963
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    Yesterday, wife and I took a ride from Belmont to Concord and back via the Minuteman Trail. Shared a great vegetarian flatbread sandwich at the Main St. cafe.

    Today, rode to Concord and met up with a friend and Peter Mooney. Did the Strawberry Hill loop. 52 miles. I gotta say, Peter is a strong rider, and a great person too.

  14. #1964
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    Got out mid-morning and rode the 31-mile loop to North Bridge, missing the hottest part of the day and enjoying the well-known pleasures of these roads. During a stop at the Depot Park Freight House, got a close look at the quad bicycle that I had seen a family riding in Concord a few weeks previous, and snapped a picture.

    I'm not sure I have the necessary social skills to hack it on one of these... And I wonder who gets to lube the chain?

    rod
    Last edited by rholland1951; 06-30-12 at 04:37 PM.

  15. #1965
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Did about 25 miles on the tandem today, Bedford to Arlington on the MM, reverse course and head to Concord, back to Bedford. Our band played a tiring show in Amesbury and it took a lot out of us. So today's ride was for recovery.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  16. #1966
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    A tiring show? I don't get it. I thought the hardest part of being a musician was braving adoring groupies and the paparazzi as you exit the limo. I'm wrong?

  17. #1967
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by berner View Post
    A tiring show? I don't get it. I thought the hardest part of being a musician was braving adoring groupies and the paparazzi as you exit the limo. I'm wrong?
    Groupies? You forget, our band carries a banjo.

    It was tiring because why? Because of the heat, mostly.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  18. #1968
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    10 miles to Lexington Center, sandwiched between two slabs of weekend bustle. Sultry day, kept one eye on the thunderstorms that stayed South, caught maybe four raindrops.

    rod

  19. #1969
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    Saturday: Nice ride with my honey on the Minuteman to Lexington, then on to Mass Ave. to Wilson Farms back to Belmont.

    Today: Quick solo in and out to Concord.

    Jim, saw you and Sharon riding on Lexington Rd. I was coming the other way, and wanted so bad to turn around and say HI, but I had to hightail it back for a gig. Hope to see you guys out there again and meet sometime.

  20. #1970
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bishbike View Post
    Jim, saw you and Sharon riding on Lexington Rd. I was coming the other way, and wanted so bad to turn around and say HI, but I had to hightail it back for a gig. Hope to see you guys out there again and meet sometime.
    You should've turned around. It wouldn't have taken much to catch us! Next time.

    Hope your gig went well.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  21. #1971
    Senior Member rholland1951's Avatar
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    10-mile mile mental health ride to Lexington Center. The Minuteman gave me a stack of prepositional phrases: "the skater on the phone in my lane in my way", not quite up to the standard set by "the cow kicked Nellie in the belly in the barn", but close. Unhelpfully, the cow did not intervene in this case. More seat-tweaking, more better.

    rod

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    To catch up:
    --Last Wed. drove down to Wompatuck with a couple friends and did the training crit. 32miles of a 1.2mi loop, nearly flat, in a carless, heavily wooded state park/forest. Very fun, and pretty chill/low key group. Averaged over 25mph-- thank you drafting! Even if you don't like racing, it is a neat place to explore on bike.
    --Thursday it was rainy before work, and I did some Sufferfest on the Trainer. Funfunfun.
    --Saturday did some "hiking" with the baby, did see a deer and get some tasty ice cream, so that was a win.
    --Sunday went to the Wells ave C race. Won it! yay. Race report over in the racing subforum if you want details.
    --Monday: Did a ride I've been meaning to do. Parked in Concord with a friend, and went to the top of Wachusett and back. 86 miles or so. Went outbound via strawberry hill, nagog hill, harvard, then up to the top of the Mountain and a bit of a flatter, more southern return route. It was awesome, but I am not in shape for hilly, >50mile rides this year. I'm much faster sub 2 hours, but after that... whew. I was praying for the last 20 miles to end. But it was worth it!

  23. #1973
    What??? Only 2 wheels? jimmuller's Avatar
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    Today I logged into the office early so I felt no guilt when I hit the road in early afternoon. Made an easy 1-hour run into Lexington, but had to get back for a phone conference at 3PM. Got some more work done, then my sweetie said "Why don't you take the bike out again?" Hard to argue with that sentiment, so I went out again, about an hour and half this time. Through Waverly Square, took Rt 60 to Arlington Center, rode the MM out to Lexington. Spent a few minutes browsing the farmers' market, resisting the temptation to buy some baked thingy to eat.

    On the way out I must have said "On your left" a dozen times as I passed people. About half of them said thanks. But only one person passed me, and he said "You set a nice pace!" We spoke for a few minutes, and I told him I got nervous with someone on my wheel!

    On the way back east I went more slowly, got passed by a lot of hotshots, and not one announced his presence.
    Last edited by jimmuller; 07-03-12 at 10:54 PM.
    Real cyclists use toe clips.
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  24. #1974
    Senior Member Bishbike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmuller View Post
    You should've turned around. It wouldn't have taken much to catch us! Next time.

    Hope your gig went well.
    Jim, next time I will be sure to turn around. I would have waved, but I had some guy drafting me, and as hard as I tried I could not ride him off my wheel. In hindsight I should have leaned left and let him pull through, but I was up for a challenge. Thought my legs and lungs were going to explode, and eventually did out past Hanscomb. The guy did not even thank me for the draft.

    Had a great gig!
    Last edited by Bishbike; 07-03-12 at 11:02 PM.

  25. #1975
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    57 mile hill ride today. Climbed Concord Ave. from the police station, then out to Trapelo Rd. out to DeCordova and Walden Pond. Did the fire road across from Walden, that one hurt!

    Met a friend in Concord and did the Strawberry Hill Loop. Returned on 62 to Page Rd,Mass Ave. to Park Ave. up to the water tower, then Concord Ave to Common St.

    I have to say, we are blessed with some of the most beautiful roads to ride.

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