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audiophile 01-22-12 05:19 PM

Thank You for this Forum!
I am so glad I found this forum! I was an avid biker until my home of Maui became less conducive to biking than I needed. I am a disabled/retired Paramedic that is leaving Hawaii for someplace "pseudo-rural", with good bike paths.
I'd like a couple acres around me so I can listen to music and movies without disturbing my neighbors or hearing them brush their teeth, and fishing would be nice to incorporate into my biking, if possible. Hiking and walking don't work with my spinal injury. Biking is it!
I am currently (once again) at the beginner level, cardiovascular-wise, being 5'7" and now over 200lbs! I'd never have imagined this myself! I have a Specialized hybrid bike and am seeking info from this forum's experience regarding a good town to live in (a little outside of) for biking purposes as well as some other issues, like open spaces, decent healthcare, reasonable cost of living and hopefully fishing.
If anyone out there has the time to spend on this newbie, I'd appreciate your experiences and recommendations. It's a BIG country, and I'd like some qualified help in narrowing my path! Thank you all so much for your consideration.

RaleighSport 01-22-12 05:21 PM

Welcome aboard! I'm not quite sure where to direct you on the site honestly.. but I'd bet if you poke around you'll get some input.

Oh and California has some wonderful cycling.

audiophile 01-22-12 06:02 PM

Thanks for your input-and almost instantly, too. I have a feeling this forum is really going to help with my next chapter in life. BTW, my 1st (chosen & bought) bike at 14 or 15y/o was a used Raleigh Super Course. Not one of my peers could touch me-and it was the BIKE, not MY "innate talent"! ha! That was truly a bike to be reckoned with and has left me with fond memories all my life.
I'm currently visiting in Walnut Creek, CA-and while I have found a lot of paths, it is very crowded around here and people so far don't seem very friendly...maybe I'm just in temporary culture shock. Is it unusual for bikers & hikers to acknowledge each other as they encounter each other here? It seems the preference is to ignore all oncoming people. Is there a lot of fear here? It doesn't appear to be that they are intently focused, as this phenomenon? seems to be across the board, from the casual to the expert. The housing prices are high, too-BUT, I have just arrived, so final determination is still quite a way off. I need to trade down in housing. The BayArea is lateral if not more, it appears. I have to go back to Maui soon and arrange for the sale of my home. Please don't take my initial observations as being negative; I'm obviously in culture shock and feeling like a man without a country! That will improve with pro-active seek, find & learn experiences.
Thanks again & happy trails!

Yo Spiff 01-22-12 06:25 PM

Welcome aboard. I'm relatively new her myself. A couple of Texas cities may be to your liking. Austin has a reputation as a very cycling friendly city and has a silver level ranking from the league of american bicyclists. I live in Fort Worth, which has been making great strides in that area, but no attaboy from the LAB yet. It's one of the city's goals, however. We do have many miles of very nice biking trails along the Trinity river. Go in one direction and you have two big cities (the other one being Dallas). Head out in the other direction and you are in farm country. Nice long riding season, in fact it was 70 this afternoon. Cost of living is very reasonable.

audiophile 01-22-12 07:37 PM

Thanks for taking the time to give me some feedback-much appreciated. I'm temporarily in the CA Bay Area, and it's way crowded and people don't seem that friendly. It's really cold, too. Lots of bike paths, I'm just not used to people acting as if you're invisible when encountering each other...has America changed that much or is it a "regional" thing? Not sure you can answer that, not being in this place, but it seems to me there is a lot of fear people are carrying around. Hoping it's regional. It isn't like these are "super-focused" people training for the Olympics; just, well maybe I've just seen a whole lot of changes in the past 50+ years and things just aren't the same anymore! I hope it feels friendlier elsewhere. After I sell my house, I'll be free to check out other areas. I'll put DFW on my map for a look-see. I've also always heard good things about Austin. Thanks much for the input!

RaleighSport 01-22-12 07:43 PM

Ahh that's great, I'm actually building up a super course (72 I believe) right now on this dreary day, on to your questions! A lot of people like riding in the denser populated areas of the bay area but I can't fathom it.. I'm in the sonoma county area, an hour or two north of you atm, a lot of serious riders/joggers won't acknowledge you, but most actual riders/runners will here anyways... this winter has been unusually cold and dry for the area though. But I think the interactions your seeing have more to do with the particular area you're currently visiting.. you may want to check into socal it has better all year riding, but norcal is more laid back in my opinion.

audiophile 01-22-12 08:28 PM

Saw the photo on your site-the seat shape & leather reminded me of my SC. Don't know the year-I bought it for $30 or $40 in 1970-ish...don't remember the year; could be as late as '72. The cables ran though the frame; rather rare for those days; center-pull brakes-state of the art then. VERY high geard. Got strong fast. It was pretty light for those days, though. Cornered like a slot car.
Anyway, WC may be a little "uppity",the jury's still out on that...maybe the times have just changed-heck, I know they have. I've seen so many changes in 50 years I'm feeling left behind, which is exactly what is happening, not to be existential or anything. ha. SOCAL is like another country to me. I'm a more rural, laid back kinda guy. Oh, and yes, it is COLD lately! It's 82 on Maui right now, and here I am in WC sitting in front of a heater! But yes, change is required. HI sucks for medical care-3rd world-ish. Bikers get bent and die regularly there, too. Some of the US's worst drivers live in HI. Someone just rec'd Austin, TX. I think I'm going to get a lot of food for thought...and look-see vacations. Wierd to me to be this age and looking for a new home base. Such is the adventure, I guess.

RaleighSport 01-22-12 08:38 PM

Ahhhh that gem is my Sekai 2700 Grand Tour Deluxe that I show off given any hat drop LoL, got it at the dump for 10 bucks!!!!!! It's late 70's vintage though. Yes you will get a lot of food for thought on this site with input from bikers who live tin the areas.

audiophile 01-22-12 09:11 PM

she is a beauty, and what a deal at $10! Some of the best products were made in the 70's-like stereos.

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