Saturday, January 31, 2009


Temps up to 45 degrees today, and I think my nose got sun burned. Is this January?
About 10 of us showed up and all we could do was talk and smile. Nice easy pace out to Excelsior on the LRT. Just gorgeous! About half peeled off at Lake Minnetonka.
The rest of us got off the trail on to paved roads and that itch became a little more noticeable. Tail wind, louder tire hum, not a whole lot of chatter, harder to breathe, heart beating faster, and then there was a gap! Uh oh, this wasn't a friendly winter ride anymore.
I usually like to inflict the pain, but today I was hangin' on for dear life. Two more dropped off. Somebody said, "Ok let's really hammer now". I'm thinkin', what were we just doing? We played hard. I figured, Ok you want to do this, I'm sittin' in, I'll just hang on. We were rarely below 20 mph as we went through Baker. Remember it's January, cross bike and studded tires. I didn't see it today, but it's always beautiful through Baker. One of my favorite places to ride. It didn't take long and we were in Wayzata and the two that dropped off were there. They looked a little surprised that we got there so soon after they did. The ride from Wayzata home was tame.

Lots of activity on the lakes today, including a bike race. We stopped and watched for a while.

A Crowded Calhoun


Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Pictures

Took the day off the bike.

Not Bike Related Photos Warning

Took these while working today up around Monticello. I need to get a real job.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Let's see 17 mph wind vs 13 mph average speed...I'd have been going backwards. Yeah, once again I wussed out and went to the gym. A little AC/DC during an elliptical 2 hours.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Got to love a place where they fly kites when it's 13 degrees.
Kite boarders were taking advantage of southwest winds out on Lake Calhoun.
22/12.7 on the Cannondale.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Double Digits

It's still cold, but it felt and looked better than the gym. 21/12.7

Harriet Band Shell

Monday, January 26, 2009

Inside Out

What's the principal that dictates two hours in the gym is so much longer than two hours out on the bike?
Took a break from the single digits, and broke a sweat that didn't freeze to my outer layer. The promise of temps in the teens tomorrow, got me through today's two hours on the elliptical.
I'll be out tomorrow.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Positive Numbers

Darth Rider lured Princess Leia and Obe Wan to ride on the dark side today. This is the second photo. The first one they weren't smiling.

We left the cafe mocking the weather, laughing in it's face, undaunted and confident in overcoming the negative numbers. By rides end the temps had succumbed and retreated back into positive territory. We had six! six! whole positive degrees.

Lots of fun today. 38/13.2

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Never Above Zero

Handsome Lookin' Devil Aren't I?


Start Temp: -5 Finish Temp: 0

Start Wind: W at 10mph Finish Wind: WSW at 10mph

Start Windchill: -22 Finish Windchill: -16

Start Pressure: 30.59 falling Finish Pressure: 30.51 falling

Start Visibility: Forever Finish Visibility: Forever

Start Level of Insanity: High Finish Level of Insanity: Low

Ride Start: 11AM Ride Finish: 2PM

Ride Time: 2hr 40 mns

Dress Time: 30 minutes

Post Shower Time: 20 minutes

I started out heading west on the greenway. I wore glasses under my ski goggles, but soon my glasses had fogged up, so I stopped to take them off. After about 5 miles, I was tired of fighting the wind, so I turned north and took the Cedar Lake Trail and looped back to Lake of The Isles and the Midtown Greenway. I did a lap around Isles and hadn't gotten tired of the tail wind yet, so I continued west to the Mississippi. From there I did my typical route and followed the river to the falls, along the creek back to the lakes.

I felt good, and never got too cold. The trails were in ideal winter riding condition. I stopped once to mark my territory, and was chilled for about 10 minutes after that, but as I worked Old Blue's massive stud embedded tires I had no problems generating enough heat to warm myself back up again.

Very few people out today. Maybe a handful of joggers and only 2 or 3 dog walkers. I did see some skaters on Isles, and a few kids sledding on some of the banks of Minnehaha Creek.

It was one of those incredibly vivid days. The sky's blue was bright and brilliant, and the snow's white hurt my eyes.

One criteria I consider to determine ride quality is, if I want to come home. I wanted to ride more, and wasn't ready to come home. I decided to play it safe, because of the extreme temps and call it a day at 35 miles with a 13.0 mph average.

Very Very Nice!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Off

Stayed off the bike today. Two or three of us will venture out tomorrow in the below zero temps. We'll see how long we last.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

All Good Things Must Come To An End

It's been a delightful week of riding. More than tolerable temps, with trails and paths in perfect winter condition. And it seems like I've been out at just the right time to catch some nice shots.
The weather man is predicting it all comes to an end later tonight.
I'm pretty sure I'll take tomorrow off, and then break out the old sub-zero ride recipe, for Saturday and Sunday. 20/12.5

Ford Bridge
Along Minnehaha Creek at Cedar
Not Bike Related Photos Warning

Took these while working today. Nice office, huh?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Another One

Two delightful winter rides in a row, and tomorrow looks really promising as well. I'm feeling lucky. 32/12.8

Minneapolis From Sabo Bridge
Sabo Bridge
Lake Nokomis
Lake Nokomis

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Mississippi On The East Side At Summit
Mississippi From The Ford Bridge
Downtown Minneapolis From Lake Harriet
Sunset From Lake Calhoun
A memorable ride. 23/12.8


However audacious, let the hope continue beyond this day, with each of us.

Monday, January 19, 2009

A Monday Ride

A nice easy ride on old blue today. I met up with Steve at the cafe and we rode for about 15 miles together. We solved most of the worlds problems as we talked, and just kept it simple and slow riding along the river and creek. He went home back along the greenway, and I did a loop around Isles, before I headed home. 25/11.5

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Man I Needed This Weekend

Started out with 9 of us. A little big-flake snow slowly falling . Temps....waaarrrmm (20's). Off the trail, and on to the roads things started to get a little road-spray-sloppy, but it was all smiles.
Coffee with schmoozing in Wayzata, then 4 of us continued around the lake. The sun came out and bank signs were showing 30. Chris hung back with Amy, the girl, and her new freckles. Steve and I talked about our kids and grand kids.
Almost forgot I was riding a bike, so nice, so easy, so comfortable. Biking with's really hard to beat. Thanks to everybody. 43/13.1

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Ahhh Free At Last

To ensure escape the evil one and I were required to wrestle with the wind. The threat and realization of 20 mph wind and gusts of 35 mph did not diminish my determination to end my incarceration. The planned escape route included snow packed trails and clear roads through Baker Preserve, by Long Lake and around Lake Minnetonka to Excelsior. At about Baker the wind became an accomplice.

This is what freedom looks like.

I got to hear it, feel it, smell it, and breathe it too. 50/13.4

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Last Day At The Gym For A long Time...I Hope

Another 2 hour elliptical session today. The forecast promises release from my recent sub-zero incarceration. I'll take the day off tomorrow, and will be free by the weekend.

This is what -20 looks like...beautiful and dangerous. The Minneapolis skyline from Lake of The Isles last night at about 8pm.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Line

Winds picked up today, so it was back to the elliptical. The two hours went by pretty quick. Maybe that had something to do with the ZZ Top CD I was listening to.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Recipe For A Sub-Zero Ride

For some reason, or lack of reason, I had to ride outside today. When I was driving around for work and it was so beautiful...tons of sun, bright white snow and sub-zero temps, all I could think about was being outside on my bike, not inside. So here's today's recipe for a sub-zero ride, which started with the air temp at -4 and windchill at -18, and ended with the air temp at -5.

Wrap rider in:
1 R.E.D. Frequency snowboard helmet
1 pair ski goggles
1 Gore windstopper balaclava
1 hooded jersey
1 long-sleeved winter jersey
1 base layer
1 Pearl winter jacket with windstopper front panels
1 pair bib knickers
1 pair Pearl bib tights with windstopper front panels
2 pair knee-high wool socks
1 pair Lake boots
1 pair toe warmers
1 pair hand warmers
1 pair glove liners
1 pair Scott -32 gloves
Place rider on 1998 Canondale F2000 MTB with drop handlebars and studded Nokians.
Add a little insanity and a lot of passion.
Crank at about 60 rpm or 12.2 mph for 1 hour 45 minutes.
Remove rider from bike.
Toes and fingers should be red and tingly, but not white.
Immediately remove all wrappings from rider and place in hot shower for no less than 45 minutes. A little pruning of finger tips and toes may occur.
Wrap rider in warm dry clothes and place gently on couch.
Let rest allowing all endorphins to flow freely.
DO NOT disturb rider.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Kept It Inside Today

Worked the elliptical for two hours today. Looks like I'll be spending even more quality time at the gym with my favorite machines. Lots of negative numbers predicted for this weeks temps.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

It Was Close

I got home from my ride and into my place just before the sun came out. There were a few rays starting to escape from the broken clouds, but I don't think I got any on me or my bike.
Three of us made it out to Wayzata navigating through about a 1/2 inch of new snow. Everybody stayed up, although a foot or two may have been put down once or twice. It's amazing how the slightest incline, this time of year, feels like a monster climb.
We left Wayzata with four of us (I know). Apparently someone was a little late for the start, but got to Wayzata just in time for the important part of the We all noticed the ease of the ride home with the aid of a slight tail wind. No sun, but once again good friends and fun chatter made this a delightful ride. 31/12.5

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Full Moon Tonight


It was a did-not-want-to-come-home ride. This was winter riding perfection. We started riding with the temp at 2 degrees. By the time we were done double digits had been achieved and we were basking at 16 degrees.
Five or six of us started our windless and cloudless ride from the cafe and wound our way along the river and creek. One peeled off at Calhoun as the rest of us continued past the Cedar Lake Monster and into the flat ski country of Theodore Wirth Park. Then another turned and headed back to the city.
Bright sun, pale blue sky, and snow that returned the sunlight back two fold accompanied every turn of the trail and road.
Perfect chatter, perfect company, perfect winter weather, perfect ride. 40/13.1

Friday, January 9, 2009

Day Off

Off the bike today, but I will do a little washing and cleaning of the winter steeds.

Not Bike Related Warning

After a while...[there] is simply too much: too much religion and not enough gods, too much news and not enough wisdom, too many weapons of mass destruction-or, for that matter of private destruction..., too much entertainment and not enough beauty, too much electricity and not enough light, too much lumber and not enough forests, too much real estate and not enough earth, too many books and not enough readers, too many runners and not enough strollers, too many freeways, too many cars, too many malls, too many prisons, too much security but not enough civility, too many humans but not enough eagles. And the worst excess of all: too many wars, too much misery and brutality [too much greed].
- Bill Holm

Thursday, January 8, 2009

10 Degrees

All sun no wind, along with not having to see Butt Crack Guy, Can't Keep Tights Up Girl, and Mohawk Man at the gym enticed me to take my snow machine out for about 2 hours. Don't get me wrong, it was cold even with toe and hand warmers, but the ride was peaceful and scenic. Long shadows and a setting sun are always beautiful whether there's any warmth or not. And so my hands and feet got cold, it beats turning my brain to mush on the trainer or at the gym. 22/12.6

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Bite Me?

It's 2:30 in the afternoon, 24 degrees, early January, sunny with light winds. You let someone know you're heading out on a ride. The response is "bite me". That's a term of endearment, right? 22/12.5

Monday, January 5, 2009

24 Degrees

Feels like summer out there compared to yesterday. And, just like summer, there are people out fishing on Lake Calhoun, although in the summer, they are usually in boats.
Pretty lucky! I get to be out on my bike and then I see scenes like these. 22/12.4

Calhoun Sunset

Trees Along The Greenway

Sunday, January 4, 2009

It Just Looks Warm

Started my ride with a -2 degree temp and a windchill of -21. Got home and the temp had made it to 0 with the windchill at only -18.
Riding out of my 65 degree garage, the first breath of sub-zero air was like swallowing ice shards, scraping, scratching, spreading, then penetrating into my lungs. Blood vessels turned into chilled capillaries sending near freezing fluid flowing into my arms and legs. Trying to fight off the icy violation, my body seized, rebelled, rejected, and retreated to coughing, twitching, tingling, anything to fight off the invading cold. Unwilling to yield the muscles, lungs and limbs fought the immobilizing invader for almost 2 hours.
After circling lakes with only a few other warriors battling the elements, I retrenched back to headquarters, hot chocolate with coconut flavored rum, resting, relaxing and observing a battle of Vikings and Eagles. 16/11.0

So bright so ineffective!

Luke, I am Your Father

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Two Tone Ride

Grey and white today, no sun and the sky looked like one large recently erased chalk board. Lynne brought some color to the ride though, with her pink jacket and red and white Conquest.
Just as we started out we came up on some Mormon missionaries. They weren't very talkative, but shadowed us up to about 55 on Theo Wirth Pkwy. I think they were intimidated by my atheistic riding style.

Lynne had the great idea of getting off the ice rink path and ride on the dry clear road. It was nice that someone brought their brain along for the ride. With very little traffic and even a few thumbs up from some motorists (they did have bikes in racks on top of their cars) we were having a great ride.

We got out a little early to avoid the predicted snow storm, that still hasn't hit, and were a little surprised by the lack of the usual joggers and dog walkers. We came back into downtown Minneapolis along the Mississippi River fighting a pretty nasty little head wind out of the southeast. It sure was nice to be able to tuck in behind Lynne and get out of it. Along the StoneArch Bridge the jogger count started to rise. We cruised along the east side of the river through the UofM campus and up hospital hill. When we got to Lake Street Lynne called it a day and enjoyed the wind at her back along the greenway all the way home.

I continued along the east side of the river to Minnehaha Falls, west along the creek to the lakes. It was one of those days when I really didn't want to stop riding, but I've been feeling so run down lately that I thought I better be smart and head home. As I cruised along the west side of Calhoun, past the kite-boarders, I talked my self into one lap around Isles, before I called it a day. 36/12.3

Friday, January 2, 2009

Friday Night Pictures

Took the day off the bike, and instead of a ride, I took pictures of the sunset from my balcony. 0/0