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  1. #1
    Senior Member garysol1's Avatar
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    Tandem stories.....

    I love my Tandem.....Thanks Knoxbreezer......
    I would love to hear your stories about your best Tandem ride ever. Either solo or group. Tell us about that one special ride that sticks out in your mind and made you realize once again why you ride a Tandem.

  2. #2
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    Garysol1: I loaded up the tandem with racks and panniers, tents, sleeping pads and mats and mini-stove. I took my 7 year old daughter on an overnight trip. We went 40 miles each way and she was a trooper. We went from the reception center of the Florida Everglades to the Flamingo campground. Sometimes life seems to be spinning out of control. My fountain of youth, where I can slow the spinning, seems to be little trips like this one.

  3. #3
    hors category TandemGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garysol1
    Tell us about that one special ride that sticks out in your mind and made you realize once again why you ride a Tandem.
    Every time we clip-in we're reminded why we ride a tandem; they're all special rides.... really.

    Yes, there have been epic rides, both on our road tandems and on our off-road tandems. The "best rides" are the ones that we share with other tandem teams such as at tandem ralllies (there have been very few disappointing rallies), friendly weekend getaways (always a great time on and off the bikes), tandem tours (our California Coast Tour, SF to SD comes immediately to mind), and the somewhat infrequent but always hillarious off-road tandem outings are also way up there.

    Photo by Roger Strauss



    It's funny... last evening my beloved said to me, "I'm always getting in your way, aren't I?" as she came to see what I was doing in another room. I replied, "no honey... you're just always close to me and I wouldn't have it any other way".... and that's what's so great about sharing time on a tandem with someone you care about; they never get left out or behind.
    Last edited by TandemGeek; 09-15-06 at 01:42 PM.

  4. #4
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TandemGeek
    and that's what's so great about sharing time on a tandem with someone you care about; they never get left out or behind.
    But they may get pissed from time to time.....

    Here is my story.....

    Poor planning (on my part) does make for emergencies (also on my part)

  5. #5
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Rarely get to ride with other Tandems so have nothing to Judge ourselves or others by. In 2004 I did an organised long ride offroad event and another tandem was entered. 5 minutes in and we lost 30 muinutes for repairs and a couple of punctures- Finally saw the other tandem about 20 miles from the finish and we passed and repassed each other till the final downhill. They were fitter and younger than us- but we could Still push on when necessary. As I say we caught them on the final downhill, and we had to cycle for about 1 mile to the finish on the road. On the approach to the finish we were riding side by side and as we got to 100yards from the end- The road was lined with wellwishers and general public and the cry that went up with two tandems finishing was Unbelievable- I could almost imagine what it is like on the TDF as a Frenchman takes a stage.

    To get appreciation from Mountain bikers on what is probably the hardest offroad ride in the UK in one day, made me and my co-rider realise that there is a lot more to Tandem riding than we expected. When we talked to the other tandem pair- we found out that we gave then 40 years in age and they not only did events like this- they were also successful club racers.

    Incidentally this was the first year that 2 tandems had finished the event.Many had started in previous years but nonne had completed the 100 miles. The only other Tandem ever to finish was in 2003 when Stuart and I Completed the full distance.
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    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  6. #6
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Some rides/events/rallies are more memorable than others; but after 51+ years of marriage, we still love doing things TWOgether!

    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  7. #7
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    First post, although I have been lurking for a couple of months now.

    My 12 year old son and I (along with my brother pulling his 3 year old son in a trailer and his wife) rode from the Canadian border to the California border in just over two weeks this summer on our beat up old Norco tandem. The only thing that has come close was a one week trip last year up Vancouver Island and down the mainland coast.

    Not from the summer trip but it's us, on a New Years Day Populaire in Victoria BC. http://www.randonneurs.bc.ca/galleri...z-photo07.html

  8. #8
    Senior Member cheg's Avatar
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    Our most memorable tandem ride so far was the one day Seattle to Portland double century ride we did this year. We planned and prepped all year and felt really good about finishing "solo", no drafting the whole way.
    The last 50 miles were a bit hard but it was an accomplishment for us. We had a hotel room across the street from the finish line, too.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Back in 1976 my wife and I had a lot of kids and not much money. My only recreation was bicycling with a neighbor but my wife, who could barely ride, wasn't able to participate. Life for her was pretty joyless.

    A friend who was moving offered to give us a tandem bicycle that she no longer wanted. It was a Schwinn Twinn coaster brake bike that had been left out in the rain. Everything was rusty. I took it home to figure out how to make a useable bike from it. The very first person I talked to said "I have exactly what you need." His parents owned a Schwinn Twinn 5-speed that had been converted to all alloy parts. He sold me both wheels, both cranks, both seats and seatposts, shifter and derailleur for $30.00. After widening the coaster brake triangle and buying the cables etc. that I needed, I had put together a 5-speed, 60 pound tandem for around $70.00. That might not sound like very much but, at the time, I thought that it was all of the money in the world.

    Over the next 8 years or so we rode that tandem together on gradually longer and longer rides. We made some tandem friends with whom we have now socialized for over 25 years. One memorable ride was the Grand Tour of Herman on which another tandem was ridden by Susan Notorangelo and Lon Haldeman. At the overnight stop, Susan sought us out to encourage us for riding such a heavy bike on such a hilly ride. It made us feel good.

    In about 1984, we sold off an extra car and used the money to buy our first Santana. It was an Elan that we bought new for $1,200. At the time I thought that was all of the money in the world. Our parents thought that we were crazy and our son told us that we were doing it backwards - you were suposed to sell off your bicycle stuff to buy a car. There seemed to be a lot more downhill with the new bike. It was more fun to ride and we loved it. We were on the road and we were having fun together and that was what mattered.

    In 1995 I lost my job so we swallowed hard and decided to open out own bike shop. That's something that never would have happened were it not for the old Schwinn Twinn. We leveraged all of the money that we had in the world. I had long ago decided decided that I'd never sell the Schwinn unless I found a buyer who needed it and would love it as much as we did. A man came by the shop one day who had a totally blind daughter who actually bicycled circles around their cul-de-sac. He wanted to buy a tandem so that he could take her on longer rides but he didn't have much money. Naturally, I sold him the Schwinn for a price I thought he could afford. They loved that bike so much that I think that it's still on the road.

    The shop eventually failed, but we salvaged some much better personal bikes out of it (like our Santana Noventa) and it pulled our family, which had been getting away from us, back together. I don't see how any of this could have happened had it not been for that old, rusty Schwinn Twinn coaster brake bike. Life is good!

  10. #10
    GO Floyd Landis, Go! Linda & Lew's Avatar
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    what a great story!!

    Thank you for sharing that with us. I think it would be a good one for sharing with the "Life is Good"
    Company!
    We need more people like you and yours!
    Linda & Lew




    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch
    Back in 1976 my wife and I had a lot of kids and not much money. My only recreation was bicycling with a neighbor but my wife, who could barely ride, wasn't able to participate. Life for her was pretty joyless.

    A friend who was moving offered to give us a tandem bicycle that she no longer wanted. It was a Schwinn Twinn coaster brake bike that had been left out in the rain. Everything was rusty. I took it home to figure out how to make a useable bike from it. The very first person I talked to said "I have exactly what you need." His parents owned a Schwinn Twinn 5-speed that had been converted to all alloy parts. He sold me both wheels, both cranks, both seats and seatposts, shifter and derailleur for $30.00. After widening the coaster brake triangle and buying the cables etc. that I needed, I had put together a 5-speed, 60 pound tandem for around $70.00. That might not sound like very much but, at the time, I thought that it was all of the money in the world.

    Over the next 8 years or so we rode that tandem together on gradually longer and longer rides. We made some tandem friends with whom we have now socialized for over 25 years. One memorable ride was the Grand Tour of Herman on which another tandem was ridden by Susan Notorangelo and Lon Haldeman. At the overnight stop, Susan sought us out to encourage us for riding such a heavy bike on such a hilly ride. It made us feel good.

    In about 1984, we sold off an extra car and used the money to buy our first Santana. It was an Elan that we bought new for $1,200. At the time I thought that was all of the money in the world. Our parents thought that we were crazy and our son told us that we were doing it backwards - you were suposed to sell off your bicycle stuff to buy a car. There seemed to be a lot more downhill with the new bike. It was more fun to ride and we loved it. We were on the road and we were having fun together and that was what mattered.

    In 1995 I lost my job so we swallowed hard and decided to open out own bike shop. That's something that never would have happened were it not for the old Schwinn Twinn. We leveraged all of the money that we had in the world. I had long ago decided decided that I'd never sell the Schwinn unless I found a buyer who needed it and would love it as much as we did. A man came by the shop one day who had a totally blind daughter who actually bicycled circles around their cul-de-sac. He wanted to buy a tandem so that he could take her on longer rides but he didn't have much money. Naturally, I sold him the Schwinn for a price I thought he could afford. They loved that bike so much that I think that it's still on the road.

    The shop eventually failed, but we salvaged some much better personal bikes out of it (like our Santana Noventa) and it pulled our family, which had been getting away from us, back together. I don't see how any of this could have happened had it not been for that old, rusty Schwinn Twinn coaster brake bike. Life is good!

  11. #11
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    Dateline....today!

    Weather in Baltimore was spotty - occasional shower all day. But at least it was warm! Nancy and I wanted to do something different - something other than the usual 2 hour plus ride from my house over the same roads we always ride, or schlepping the tandem out to the country on the car, ride, then schlepping it back.

    Nancy saw in the paper that Federal Hill (a semi-gentrified area of Baltimore City) was having a festival with lots of bands! So, we decided to ride to the festival. Nancy - being somewhat of a slave to fashion - does not really dig the 'cyclist' look in general and particularly not at something other than a 'cyclist' event, so we wore standard shorts and shirts with only our cycling shoes to distinguish us from the general populace (and Nancy packed sandals to use when we got there). I put the rear rack and a saddle bag on the bike, threw in the rain jackets and the lock and off we went. It's amazing how much more you can hear when you... don't have a helmet on! (that's right folks...we dared to ride naked-noggins). We took Charles Street and St. Paul's Street strait through town and on to Light Street. Another thing... folks in the city drive better around bikes than folks in the 'burbs.

    We hung out and ate (and had a huge glass of Guinness) and listened to a bunch of bands and then after a brief period of sunshine, the clouds rolled in and it got dark. We had a bad-weather plan to take the light rail home if we could get the tandem in the train, so we quickly rode the 4 blocks over to Camden Yards, purchased 2 tickets and waited. Luckily, the train was almost empty and we hoisted the tandem up into the train for the 30 minute ride out to the 'burbs.

    When we got to the Lutherville stop, it had stopped raining (but the roads were still wet). We donned our rain jackets, turned on the bike lights and pedaled the 2 miles back to Nancy's house and arrived in time to watch the Raven's game.

    All-in-all a fun afternoon - rain and all.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Brian's Avatar
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    The missus and I took our tandem through the Aussie bush - slippery water crossings, mud, sketchy pea gravel, water bars, a long downhill (brake check!), and a few spills, then along the beach and back home. We just had this one ride where we were in perfect sync the whole time, and she had heaps of fun.

    Every ride is a good ride for me. When my wife has a really good time, it's a great ride.

  13. #13
    Junior Member wrchism's Avatar
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    My wife is the writer in our family . . . not me! She put her thoughts together after our tour with Santana in Hawaii over Valentine's Day 2006 . . . . CLICK HERE.

  14. #14
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    We had made a few efforts starting in 1999 to ride together, but my wife just couldn't relax. Hung the bike up for almost 3 years, and I continued to ride my single bike. In July 2002 I lost my mother to cancer, and after things calmed down a bit, we decided to give the tandem anther try. My wife was relaxed, and on that ride we spotted a fat red-tailed hawk perched on a power pole. We had never noticed them before my mom's passing, and we are both convinced that that was my mother (she of the eagle eye) keeping tabs on us. Since then we take all hawk sighting as a good omen; that we are being checked on. Since then it's been smooth sailing.

  15. #15
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    A more recent ride was at this year's SW Tandem Rally in Ardmore Oklahoma. Saturday AM was overcast and 100% humidity. We made the lunch stop just as the thunderstorms hit. Bikes were left laying in the grass as the riders ran for cover. After a few hours (inside, with food, drink, restrooms and TV) the skies magically cleared, and everyone headed out. We enjoyed 10 miles of warm, sunny tailwind-assisted ROLLER SURFING! Yowza!!

  16. #16
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by George Handy
    We had made a few efforts starting in 1999 to ride together, but my wife just couldn't relax. Hung the bike up for almost 3 years, and I continued to ride my single bike. In July 2002 I lost my mother to cancer, and after things calmed down a bit, we decided to give the tandem anther try. My wife was relaxed, and on that ride we spotted a fat red-tailed hawk perched on a power pole. We had never noticed them before my mom's passing, and we are both convinced that that was my mother (she of the eagle eye) keeping tabs on us. Since then we take all hawk sighting as a good omen; that we are being checked on. Since then it's been smooth sailing.
    Karma!

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