Tuesday, May 31, 2011


That was some serious wind, and it wasn't letting up. Did the best I could to stay on tree covered trails and away from the buffeting. Gusts up around 40mph, sustained at 20mph easily. 31/16.9

The Sky Over Isles Looked Like Marbles I Used To Play With

The wind is blowing
The trees are bowing over
Worshiping their god

haiku by Tom Russell in 10th grade

Monday, May 30, 2011

Hard To Beat

Ride starts at 10AM. At 9:50 I'm looking out the window and see hail. Phone rings. No, hi how are you, no introduction, just, "I'm under a bridge and I'm not coming out!" From the tone of her voice, I felt much safer knowing she wasn't coming out from under that bridge. Amy did make it to my place, hail ended, she got dried off, and we sort of waited out the rain. Apparently she wanted to get out before it stopped raining so I could get wet too. We were out of our rain jackets and arm warmers by the time we got to Wayzata.
It has been one of those perfect weekends. Lots of riding (about 220 miles), spent lots of time with friends, Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday night. I'm sportin' a bit of a sun burn (it got up to 87 degrees today, with a dew point of 70, after the hail). And then some quality time with my camera this evening.

Got some extra credit riding in today. Monday is a recovery day. We did ride at a recovery pace, but tallied some pretty good miles on the computer as we cruised along the Dakota Trail past St. Bonnifacious. That's a very pretty trail. As odd as it may seem, it felt like we had a tail wind for 85% of the ride. The wind was in our favor to St. Bonni and seemed to shift once the front came through, again, in our favor. I'm not complaining. It was great riding with Amy, like always. Once I got wet she wasn't mad anymore.
I'd been home from the ride for about 15 minutes, and was pretty shot, when the phone rang again. It was RON! AND HE WAS OUT ON HIS BIKE and had shown up at my door!
I grabbed the fast goodlookin' bike, threw my shoes back on and we were gabbing like a couple of old ladies as we circled Isles and Calhoun. There was even talk about starting a Ron, Gordy and Tom ride on Monday afternoons. This has real serious potential. Today's ride 70/17.2

That was one damn good weekend.

This Morning's Hail
What Riding In The Rain Did To The "B" Bike
Windy, Hot, Hazy, and Humid at Harriet This Evening
Tulips At Lyndale Park


Tonight's Storm Clouds Gathering Over Isles

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Coffee Ride

Hooked up with the team's Sunday Coffee Ride. Rode along the Mississippi River as it passes through the Twin Cities. Just talkin' ridin' and enjoying friends. Then lunch at The Birchwood Cafe. Very Nice! 48/16.6

Rest Stop
Downtown St. Paul

Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Little More Than Planned

Got out for the first century of the season. The plan was to keep it moderate. The plan didn't get followed to well.
Wasn't really pushin' it, but when we pulled into Belle Plaine to refuel our average speed was in the low to mid 19s. The tail wind that accompanied us home kept telling me to go faster. I tried not to listen, but to no avail. The prospect of a 5 hour century was very enticing.
It was a really beautiful day. Freshly plowed fields exposing the rich brown and black earth, all bordered with the green of spring. Blue sky with white wispy clouds was a delightful backdrop to it all.
This is my favorite route, with great rural views of farms, rolling hills, and the Minnesota River Valley, but it is also the hardest, with numerous climbs, four of which are pretty substantial, for Minnesota.
Aaron joined Amy and me and we turned in a fun, good effort, which wound up being a very pleasant surprise, and that I'm really feeling now. I don't have what I used to, but it was nice to find out that I can still put down a 5 hour century. Thanks to Amy and Aaron. Very fun! 100/19.9

These Young Kids And Their Techno Gizmos (Belle Plaine Refueling Stop)
Amy Just After Cresting Lime Street Hill

Friday, May 27, 2011


Rain came late afternoon + cold wind blowing + beer started calling early evening = day off the bike.
Century tomorrow.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Clean Ride Friends

The fast goodlookin' bike has been a little noisy lately. She got caught in the rain a couple of times and has been telling me about it. She can be temperamental. I broke down, and did a little lubing and cleaning today. Made a world of difference.
Nice ride. All sun. Met some cycling friends for a BBQ this evening. Very nice! 33/18.0

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Not As Much

Little tired tonight. I'm not use to accepting less. 30/16.9

Isles Looked Good Tonight

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Nice Scary

"B" bike was all dried out and raring to go. Just nice and simple tonight. 33/18.2

A friend of mine (Eric Thoerner) is a helicopter EMT. He took these pictures of the tree-less path of destruction left by Sunday's tornado. This tornado was classified as an EF-1, nothing like the total destruction of the EF-5s in Missouri and Oklahoma.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Never A Dull Moment

Yesterday at 2:16PM a tornado crossed Hwy 100 and Interstate 394. This is about two miles from my home. At 2:20PM I was exiting Hwy 100 and merging on to Interstate 394. I said to my traveling companion, "do you hear tornado sirens?" She said, "no". I rolled down my car window and sure enough they were blaring. Then we came upon debris strewn across the highway. She said,"maybe we should turn on the radio". 'CCO was declaring a tornado warning and indicated a tornado had been sighted at the 394 100 interchange. We both looked at each other and said simultaneously, "maybe we should go back home", instead of heading on to Art-A-Whirl.

After a stormy weekend with tornadoes two days in a row, and being chased by lightning on my Sunday ride, today the weather settled down to a very beautiful and calm spring time day.
I took the fast good lookin' bike out. The "B" bike needed to dry up. I removed the tires and poured about a 1/4 cup of water out of each of the rims. Then I cleaned the sand and road grit up and let everything sit in the sun. The chain is a little rusty after spending 5-6 hours riding in the rain. I guess that might mean I am too. The chain will be fine after a couple of squirts of lube.
Very nice ride today. Perfect weather and temps. 33/17.7

Yesterday's Storms Leaving

Tonight's Sunset

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Wet Weekend

It's been a stormy weekend creating lots of soggy everything, and an explosion of green. I did get my shoes dried out from yesterday, only to re-hydrate them today. I could hear water sloshing in my wheel rims as I headed out to meet Amy. It had gotten in there during yesterday's ride. I figured, what the heck, they're just going to get filled up again today.
Amy and I made our way to Delano, with slight variations in the route just to check out new scenery. We only got sprinkled on a couple of times. It seemed we were going to avoid getting wet until we were hit with a real deluge just as we pulled out of Wayzata, on our way home. Very dark, low hanging clouds were behind us, then we heard a couple of growls of thunder and saw some cracks of lightning. After the first lightning strike Amy started taking some pulls. I don't know...I think she was safe on her all carbon bike, but she wasn't taking any chances, and proved to be faster than lightning, which I already knew.
The senses were definitely stimulated once again today, this time with electricity in the air.
Two pretty taxing back to back rides for me. I thoroughly enjoyed both of them. The elemental experience brought on by the rawness of the rain and storms will make them quite memorable. 68/18.6

Sky Line Last Night
Storms Passing Over Isles

Saturday, May 21, 2011

It Rains In Heaven

It was a day for the oldest shorts and the most worn jersey underneath a rain shedding jacket mounted on "B". And I got to ride with my old friend, the dangling droplet of water dancing across the brim of my cap.
There was something about today's ride. It was invigorating, refreshing and new. Maybe it was simply the rain and how innocent and pure its cleansing made everything.
Maybe it was the trail I was on, the seclusion it provided, the simplicity of nature without the clutter of human civilization.
I've always liked taking on adverse conditions. I feel strong because I can overcome, the heat, cold, snow or rain. Maybe that was it. That my passion for my one and only love is so intense, nothing will keep me from it.
Or, maybe it's the reward of what I'll see and hear...and feel that I wouldn't if I was sheltered. The rain against my face awakens me. It's like a pinch to make sure I'm not dreaming. Could this be real? Am I really seeing this, feeling this, hearing this?

I discovered today, that it rains in Heaven. I saw it! 67/17.9

Dakota Trail
Lake Waconia
Didn't Want To, But I Turned Around

Friday, May 20, 2011

Day Off

Off the bike. Met Gordy for beers this evening. We get faster every time we get together. Rumor has it he may come out of retirement. He's back on the bike. LOOK OUT!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Good Week

A good week of riding, despite feeling pretty tired on Monday and Tuesday. Good miles and great weather, plus that spring thing happening made the week very nice.
Looks like the weekend weather is going to suck. I'll be out in it, but will probably be off the bike tomorrow. We'll see. 33/17.7

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cycling With The Sun

This week has had the best weather of the year, so far. 33/17.4

I Do Love A Sunset

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Color Returns

Had no good reason, but felt a little tired riding. A visual delight tonight, though. The starkness of winter has a beauty that I do enjoy, but spring with all of its colors and the promise of new life... 32/16.9

Riding along Minnehaha Parkway

Later in the evening
Walking Around Lake of The Isles

Monday, May 16, 2011


I like this easy riding, making sure I recover, and enjoying the scenery part of cycling. Why didn't I think of this sooner? I could get use to this.
Beautiful day, just moseying along the old paths tonight. 33/17.0

You know what I like about this photo?

Sunday, May 15, 2011


It was so nice to see it again. Met Stephanie and Mike and did my long Baker route. It was so beautiful out. Haven't seen the sun much lately, but it was blazing today. Much appreciated. 52/18.4

Elijah and I did some exploring this afternoon. Here is some of what we saw.

Owl By Lake Harriet

Peace Garden Tulip


Dead Wood

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Pleasant In Unpleasantness

We left at 9. Raindrops started appearing on my balcony at 10 til. We'd go, at least, to Wayzata, once there we'd see how we felt, and what the conditions were like.
More wet, wind and cold was what waited at Wayzata, and you are right, any sane, coherent persons would've called it a day. So, it was on to Delano.
Wind was out of the north with gusts near 20 mph. I changed the route a little to keep it a crosswind instead of a straight on frontal attack. As if the weather conditions weren't arduous enough, we also got to change two flat tires.
Instead of our usual stop in Delano, we figured it to be a good idea to replenish our supply of CO2 cartridges, and stopped at the local sports store. Who knows how many more flats we might have to change on the way home. We also got ourselves a little fuel.
And about the way home, I decided to show Amy a new route. New, or different is not something that either one of us really jump at, but to her credit, she was willing to give it a try. The new route had less traffic, better scenery, and a little more cover from the wind, and, Amy is convinced, and not too happy about, it also has many more rollers. She might be right, so the new route did not win a whole lot of praise from Amy. I still like it better.
We'd grown pretty accustomed to the cold, our gloved hands and bootie covered feet were staying at a consistently wet and delightfully cool 44 degrees. But, as we stated more than once, "they've been colder".
You know, as unpleasant as I'm trying to make this sound, it really turned out to be a nice ride. It's Saturday, I was on my bike, and was with a really good friend. And like Amy said, what else was there to do? And oh yeah, this cup of hot chocolate, with it's special ingredient, ain't hurtin' my attitude either. 76/17.7

Friday, May 13, 2011

Rest Day

I've found that there are times when being on the bike can be as restful as staying off. Nice and easy on a cool, gray Friday. I managed to find a little color.
It never ceases to amaze me how vital to life being on the bike can be. What it has gotten me through... 12/lots of stops

Along The Trail
Downtown From Calhoun

Drizzle And Mist

Even with the drizzle, Thursday evening's ride was very nice. Dressed right, stayed warm, and kept my glasses clear - that's about all it takes. 23/16.4

Jacket Kept Me Dry
Tulips at Lake Harriet Were Beautiful