Friday, July 31, 2009

how to be smarter next time you go to the bike repair shop

Bike Knowledge Clinic coming again, August 30, Sunday afternoon 2-5, first hour is tire changing and bike cleaning, 3-5 is geared to how to be smarter at the bike shop.

some things we will learn about:

1. when to replace chain and how to tell if cassette is ready to be changed, how to avoid a chain break on a ride and what to do if your chain breaks

2. replacing bike cables, how and when

3. adjusting brakes and when to change the pads

4. how to explain your bike issues to the bike shop mechanic

5. how not to get ripped off when at the shop

I will be getting a bike shop mechanic in to run this workshop, so if you say you are coming, I expect you to come

reply to me if coming,

Thursday, July 30, 2009

gun shots flying on the Schuylkill River Trail

yes, gun shots were fired last week when a cyclist and a few folks met up at the famed Norristown location on the trail, the cyclist has been arrested for murder charges

it was discoverd that the person being shot at ( age 17) was running a chop shop for bikes and had apparently stolen lots of bikes from people on the trail, it was guessed he was stealing bikes from other young kids based on the Mongoose brand name

but what can be done??

the Montgomery county DA, Risa Vetri Ferman, who herself was accosted on the trail, is getting more involved in stepping up safety, she is suggesting surveillance cameras and other avenues to help this situation

Phila Bike Works and some bike clubs are working on trying to get kids in Norristown involved in biking hoping this addresses the problem

while this is a fabulous idea, and i support it wholeheartedly I am not sure it is addressing this problem

not sure if the target audience for going to a bike rodeo or learning how to fix bikes is the same audience that is harassing folks on the trail

but nonetheless, every angle has to be tried and something surely needs to be done to address this safety issue

to contact the Montgomery County DA's office,,a,1494,q,38396,daNav,|.asp

riding early morning hourse on the SRT is probably your best bet, not sure if the kids will be up at 8 am and at the trail, but ya never know

bike in groups is another suggestion

but stay safe and keep alert, carry a cell phone and call 911 immediately if a problem occurs

Discover Chester County and courtesy

Hey ladies, come ride this Saturday with the Brandywine Bike Club. The Dog Daze ride takes place right here in the West Chester area. There are four options for this ride, 27, 50, 77 and 100 mile rides. I will be doing the 50 mile ride, but the 27 mile ride is also a fabo ride. You get to see all the back roads of Chester County that you may never have even driven your car on.

Yesterday I was flying home from Florida and was seated in the plane next to a lady from Pocopson. She has lived here for years and yet only knew Rt 100 and Rt 842 for biking. If you want to learn the roads of our lovely county, you MUST get on a bike and discover the beauty of the county.

and YES, you will see lots of riders on horses. Recommended policy when approaching horses with riders along the roads:

1. slow down

2. talk to the rider, say, "Hey Hi, good morning, beautiful day isnt it??"

3. continue past the horse and rider and continue going slow

4. courtesy is a dying art form from what i can see, so when biking this saturday, say hi to other riders and say hi to folks on horses

friendly happy people are what i like to see

Monday, July 27, 2009

girls just wanna have fun

I hear more often from chicks and some men as well that riding with a bike club is not fun. They arrive at designated meet up and see fancy smancy bikes, tight spandex and gear up the wazoo. For some this is an instant turn off.

What I like to tell my fellow chicks, you ride whatever it takes to make for an easy ride. A big fat tire bike is good for the boardwalk by the Jersey Shore but will not make it on the roads in Chester County.

So for starters, a decent road bike is a good first start. You do not need DuraAce components on your first bike.. But good components make for a good ride and make it easier in the long run.

I have seen some chicks with road bikes but rather fat tires. The thinking being my fatter tires are safer and I will not get a flat. But this makes for a tougher ride when doing lots a miles and hills. So in the long run, you poop out and think you are a failure. When in fact, you are working harder than most on the ride.

I have seen chicks with cleats and without cleats. Again, a good cleat system can make your ride easier in the long run. While we look fancy with our shoes and cleats, the purpose again, MAKE the ride easier and more fun.

Clothes can be intimidating too. Bike pants, bike shirts, gloves, helmets, socks, holy cow what else do I have to buy.

Again, while clothes are not quite as critical in making your ride fun, why not look damn good when out there. Get some spandex and wear it proudly.

Currently I am riding a Tom Kellogg Spectrum bike, built by Tom in 1978!! Old fashioned steel but one sweet ride. It has been updated with new wheels and components and has given me so far 3 great years. It was passed to me by my twin sister.

I have added some fancy stuff along the was, a GPS, some nice bike bags, lights,bike pump and have expanded my wardrobe.

SO you buy a bike and gear to MAKE RIDING FUN not to impress the other folks standing at the meet up for the bike ride. SO get your bike and gear and come out and ride.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

charlene got mad - FINALLY

Charlene went to her bike store and demanded something be done, she ended up with a new chain and cassette for her bike, no charge.....

so it pays to go into a bike store knowing what you want, otherwise, you can get taken advantage of.......

as was charlene, so HATS off to charlene for finding her voice in the bike store.

I am really proud of her, she has come so far in her biking, she is one fit mama on her bike.

Somethings to think about when coming to our next bike clinic:

1. the brand name of your derailleurs, and chains, it makes a difference when you have to do a roadside repair

2. take a look at your cassette in back and see if you can determine if it is ready to be replaced, again, don't rely on a bike store to tell you this, just get on the Net and look up "how to know when to replace the back cassette"

3. how to know when to replace a chain

4. how to know when to replace cables

AGAIN, from what i have seen, good bike service is hard to come by and it helps if you can accurately describe the problem to the mechanic.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Libby's Bike Store Rant - I hate them!!

this is me today, that is how mad I am

I have been riding with a lady in her late 50s, grey hair but fit as a fiddle. Anyhooo, long story short, she bought a brand new bike this spring. 3 times I have been out with her and her chain has broken, yes, broken, 3 times, just comes apart and falls off the bike.

First time she goes back to original store and they "say" they have fixed it. She is again out and voila, chain breaks and is bent. She goes to one bike store and they say, "chain looks fine lady" and they send her on her way.

She goes back to original bike and they say it is bent and "fix it". We are out today and you guessed it, the chain breaks.

So we have 3 ladies, butts in the air trying to fix a chain. It was like the 3 Stooges. First I open the Sram link, set it by my feet and weave chain in and where that Sram link went is anybody's guess. It was for 9 speeds, her gear cog had 10, so maybe it woulda been the wrong size anyhow.

We open the 8 speed Sram universal link and it does not go on and for the life of me I cannot remember anything sweet, kind Viktor O. had told me about how to fit the universal link back in. Viktor, where are you????

By now by hands are so black and I am sweating like a pig and glasses are fogging up. I gave up.

By the way, at least 3 men biked past at break neck speed. Not even a "are you okay?"

Connie and I left Charlene (she called hubby to come get her) and Connie and I blast home as we both have to get back early. We ride on all the roads they tell us not to ride on - Goshen, rt 352 and Paoli Pike. But we get home.


How in heck can a person go 3 times to a bike store and NOT have the folks in them actually fix her chain. Whattsup with that??

Is it cuz Charlene like me is an old lady? and by old I mean past 50, obviously if we are riding bikes we are not old but in the eyes of a 20 something bike mechanic, let's face, we look old.

Do you we get lousy service cuz we are old ladies?? What? Someone please tell me what the problem is with bike shops and older chicks?? How can a lady take her bike in for something as simple as a damaged chain and not have the bike store actually replace the chain but tell her it is fixed. I am beyond angry that a Biker Chick can have this happen to them.

SO LADIES, advanced bike repair clinic coming. Hopefully Charlene hangs onto her old chain and we can all practice repairing one.

Advanced clinic will focus on how to change a cable and yes, we will change one. We will work on derailleur adjustments and how to know when you need a new gear cog in back. We will focus on how to change brake pads. NO tire changing, no cleaning, do it before you come. If you do not know these 2 basics, yu can come early. More details to come.

I am convinced that if you are female and past 50, ya'd better learn how to fix your bike yourself cuz from what I have seen, the bike stores in the West Chester area have much interest in fixing your bike as your husband or bf does.

Some bike store owner prove me wrong, please!!! Cuz I am beyond angry that this can happen. Do bike stores actually want to fix bikes?? or do they just want to sell them?? are they only interested in the better riders and their bikes?

What?? I am stymied and have no answers.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

bike gear recommendations

I like the Terry shorts, have tried a variety of brands and keep coming back to Terry. I agree with the Georgiana Terry, the fabric is the best and the chamois pad is superb. The shorts come is various lengths, I like the long version as I am tall.

another cool bike bag, look around on the Net to find a place to buy one

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

pee standing up

This product is currently being sold at this year's RAGBRAI ( ride across Iowa, several chicks are there). It is called Go-GIRL and it lets the user have some freedom when outdoors and looking for a place to go potty.

Apparently this product is showing up at lots of sports event where there are women. Once you use the device, you can fold in back into the can and reuse it again if need be. Or you can toss it into a trash can. This product eliminates the need to find a spot to squat and pull your pants down, sometimes this is not the safest thing to do.

from the website, this direct quote.....

"GoGirl is easy to use. Just lower your panties, and put GoGirl against your body, forming a seal. Aim and, well, pee. Pretty simple, huh?

GoGirl fits easily in your purse, pocket, or glove compartment. It’s a must for travel and sports. And it’s great for everyday––no more crouching over or trying to cover up an unsanitary public toilet.

While the concept may be new to you, European women have used female urination devices for years. GoGirl’s not the first device of its kind. But try it. And we think you’ll agree it’s easily the best.

Only GoGirl is made with flexible, medical grade silicone. Dispose of it after use. Or clean and reuse as you like. (Urine is sterile, but the product can come into contact with contaminates during use, so take precautions when cleaning.) Our patented splash guard eliminates messing and spilling. Once you practice a time or two, using a GoGirl is going to feel like second nature. You won’t be like a man. You’ll just pee like one."

Monday, July 20, 2009

rides for week of July 20

Tuesday-Thursday evening - July 21, 23- 530 Show and Go, Hot Foot

Saturday July 25 7:50 Cue # 170 38 miles out to Malvern and Glen Mills,

Saturday Aug 1 NO CHICK ride from Hot Foot, Encouraging all chicks to attend the Dog Daze ride sponsored by Brandywine Bike Club. Ride takes off from the Nature Center on rt 842.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

group of us did the SRT to Art Museum

Anne Mahlum getting a hug from fellow runner

5 of us biked from Betzwood to the Art Museum and back today. We all remarked on what an incredible day it was. Low humidity, low temps and Dragon Boats on the Schuylkill River as we biked by.

There was a fund raiser going on near the AM. The young college girl who started giving running shoes to homeless folks and getting them into running was the recipient of the monies raised, hopefully to buy more shoes and help spread the program nationwide. The program is called Back on my Feet. Read about Anne Mahlum in the Inquirer and discover one unbelievably wonderful young lady.

But coming home, we all stopped near Manyunk and Melinda remarked, "aren't we lucky, biking on a beautiful day, with our health and good fortunes". Indeed!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

two rides I am doing

hoping to get a large amount of chicks at these two rides

Dog Daze August 1, register the day of the event, it does not have online registering

for directions on how to get to the start place, I am doing the 50 mile ride

Covered Bridge Metric August 16, suggest your register online as this event draws over 3000 riders, great ride, basically flat, have 2 spare tire tubes and 2 water bottles on bike

Thursday, July 16, 2009

how not to get the universal finger salute when biking

We all get harassed from time to time when riding on the roads in Chester County. But there are things we can do to avoid this problem. One simple thing to do is to bike just like you are driving your car. Think like a car driver and act like a good car driver.

1. When riding in groups, DO NOT stop and gather at intersections, stop earlier or find a spot that will accommodate several bike riders.

2. Stay single file on busy roads and if riding 2 abreast, move over quickly.

3. Obey all stop lights, I try to stop just like I was a car and I do not move way up front. I proceed in the same fashion as if I was a car. I do not like to see bikers squeezing up along the curb to get to the front of the line. Wait your turn.

4. NEVER talk on the cell phone and this includes the Schuylkill River Trail. Stop and talk off the trail or road.

5. If riding in a group and crossing busy intersections, do not just go along like a lemming, make sure you check both ways before simply following the crowd.

STAY alert at all times, suggest that you consider getting the rear view mirror on your eyeglasses or helmet to help you see approaching cars.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

lessons learned, what to do if you get hit by a car

(not my son's bike)

We had a lady from the WhiteClay Bike club involved in a hit and run. Not sure if she filed a police report or not, will have to ask her next time I see her. She was knocked unconscious and had to be taken to the hospital.

Also, my son was recenty hit in Florida. He was fine, bike was damaged. As soon as he was hit, he immediately dialed 911 and got the policemen to come and filed a police report. He got insurance information and contact information from the hitter while the cops were there.

Long story short, he just got a check from the insurance company in less than a week to cover ALL the bike repairs and a visit to a doctor to be checked.

SO it pays to file a police report. Not sure if this helped to facilitate the quick insurance response or not. My son got estimates for the bike repair quickly and had all the information ready when the insurance company called him.

new cue for Saturday

Cue #226 32 miles, since doing 55 on Sunday, I wanted less miles on Saturday.

Go to the WCCC ride page and there is a link for the cue, print it up and bring it.

looking for chicks to ride on the SRT Sunday morning

Come on ladies, let's ride this Sunday morning, Betzwood to Art Museum and back. So far I have heard from 2 folks, one lady and one guy. It is a nice trip, pace will be brisk, as it is a long ways, cannot plod along or it will take all day.

We leave the Betzwood Park at 7:45 am sharp.

Come ride, if you do not want to do the entire ride, turn around at any point and head back. You cannot get lost, it is trail! Just follow it.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

logging your miles to help in maintenance

Since chain maintenance and cassette replacement is determined by use and maintenance, it is good idea to track your miles, that way you have a better idea of when to replace both.

Lots of folks ride 3000-5000 miles in one year. That would necessitate a chain change every year and a cassette change every 2 years.

Now if you only ride 1000 miles a year, obviously your chain and cassette will last longer.

So tracking your miles is a worthwhile activity. Since I started tracking my miles in March, I have done over 1000 miles already. So by next spring I may be around 3000-4000 miles and both my chain and cassette will be ready for changing. I had from July of last year 1700 miles, so for the past year I have 2700 miles. I will easily add another 2000 miles by next spring.

So as you can see, tracking miles is a good idea.

Monday, July 13, 2009

from my bike expert with over 35 yrs experience

We were all confused last night about when to change a chain and the gear set in back. So I posted to my guy and this is his take on chains and gear sets......

Back in the old days when chains and freewheels were $10 each I changed them together every year. Now with cassettes going for $80-200+ that would get expensive fast. The common advice is to change chains every 1500-3000 miles, It depends on how clean you keep the chain and the quality of the chain. They will stretch over time and can start to wear the cassette. I have a Park tool that measures the stretch but I just change the chains every year on the new bikes and every 2 years on the old bikes. With clean chains that haven't stretched too much a cassette should last 5000-10000 miles.

I've used the chain cleaners but I don't think they're necessary anymore with the new dry lubes. They do work well but they're messy and I worry about the degreaser getting into the bottom bracket and derailleur pulleys. If you have a chain with a master link it's just as easy to take the chain off and soak it in degreaser off the bike. The cleaners are also good for mountain bikes where the chains get covered in mud and dirt.

Twitter updates

If you are like me, you are getting requests to follow some highly questionable folks on Twitter. These folks then appear in your "FOLLOWERS" page. Getting rid of these followers is complicated.

You can block them or unfollow them but getting their names off of your page is tricky.


1. Click on your followers page
2. Click on the follower you want to remove and his/her page comes up
3. Click the word follow right under their name
4. Then click the little triangle on the left side of the word FOLLOW and a drop down menu will appear. Click the word REMOVE.
5. Then look on the right side and find the word ACTIONS
6. Under ACTIONS click BLOCK

this should remove the name from your page, at least it did for me

Sunday, July 12, 2009

West Chester Rocks

If I consciously tried to get tired, I could not get any more tired than I am. Between bike riding and the Crit and the Quaker Tour today (which I had to bail on as I could not make my legs go around one more time) and then the Twitter Party, I am pooped.

The Iron Hill Criterium is beyond spectacular. If you have never come into the town of West Chester to see this event, you are missing witnessing the power of a small town and how it has re-made itself over the last 20 years.

West Chester rocks, really. I live at least 8 blocks out of town and cars lined our street yesterday. Cars which were bringing folks to the Crit. This kind of crowd and publicity is a tourist bureau's dream come true.

Connie's Bike Clinic and Twitter Party was just the best ever. There were new ladies that were just so nice. One young chick had just a great life story and came to the party to do exactly what the party was intended for.

She changed her tire, she cleaned her bike and she got hooked up on Twitter. Plus she was funny. I love funny people and she was funny.

Her Twitter name is "thebestlisaever" and she really was. What fun to meet all these new ladies.

Thanks Connie and thanks to all the ladies who came and had fun.

Continue to laugh and smile as there really is nothing else that compares.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

great ride but where the heck were the chicks who wanted 730am

Chicks had a great ride this morning, but all the ladies that said they would come to a 730 ride were not to be found. I looked but trust me, YOU WERE NOT THERE.

I had the club president and the club ride leader with me today to help with instruction for newbie riders so that was SUPER.

Also brought the ride speed down. We averaged around 11 and that was also nice. I got tired of racing around the roads and coming home exhausted.

So I made this change and the time change BUT Next WEEK IS 7:50 AM. No more 730 am rides for me unless I know people are going to show up.

Check blog again, cuz I may change the cue to a 30 miles again. Was nice to come home today and not feel like I did the French Creek Iron Tour again.

Friday, July 10, 2009

advancing my bike repair skills

I have learned that the best way to get your bike fixed or working is to learn how to do it yourself. Would you believe I went out and bought a tool box ( ok, it's not as big as above!) and I will slowly start to acquire the tools I need to fix my bike.

Yesterday my back brake got moved and was stuck in a position where my back tire would not move. Called my brother in law and he told me what tool to go buy and then gave me some great tips on the phone.

So my tool cost $5 and who knows what the bike shop would have charged me to adjust the brake.

But the more I work on my bike, the less I would want to take it to a bike shop. I am very lucky in that I have my brother in law who teaches me what to do. When I take the bike to him, I watch him do the repairs and try to duplicate them myself.

But learning basic bike maintenance is a worthwhile activity especially if you bike a lot. And more women should get into it.


Hey ladies, if you have done nothing with the chicks, this weekend is your chance to change that.

1. Chick ride saturday morning, 730 am, Hot Foot, 30 miles, easy ride

2. Iron Hill Crit, 3-11 Chicks will be at the corner of Walnut and W Market

3. Community rides, 11 am Hoopes Park, 23 miles, tour Quaker sites, slow pace

4. Picnic at Hoopes after ride

5. 4 pm- Connie's house Twitter Party and Bike clinic

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Rides for week of July 12

Tuesday and Thursday, July 14, July 16 5:30 Hot Foot

Saturday July 18 7:50 am Hot Foot cue # 226 32 miles

Sunday July 19 7:45 am Schuylkill River Trail ride, Betzwood Bike Park to Art Museum, FAST paced average mph will be around 15, 55 miles through Manyunk and a rest at the Art Museum area. Bring plenty of food and drink. We can stop in Manyunk on the way home if need be for food, and beverage. Email if coming to this ride or Tweet me.

great ride on SRT yesterday and safety update

WE had 4 folks on the trail yesterday and ended up doing 45 miles. Beautiful weather and not many folks on the trail. We saw no hoolligans on the trail and felt safe.

I am not able to do any more rides this week. Taking my bike to my wheel guy for truing on Thursday and his shop is in Phila.

I think if you ride early in the day, you are safe on the trail. I know there has been publicity about kids attacking riders.

But if these kids are like most kids, they are NOT up early and not near the trail early. SO to avoid problems, head out early to the SRT. I did not see any police or security folks yesterday and had seen them previously.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

the need for food and hydration

From time to time I bike with ladies who have not eaten breakfast prior to a bike ride and do not have enough high calorie food with them for the ride at hand. I have no idea how you can get on a bike in the morning without having eaten breakfast. Make time for it, get up a half hour earlier so you can eat a big bowl of cereal with bananas and orange juice too or eat a nice stack of pancakes.

In the summer on your ride, I recommend TWO large bottles with something other than water, try diluted Gatorade if you hate the taste or some such beverage. YOU NEED calories to ride.

Snacks should be high sugar food, nuts or high protein bars are not necessary either. Just good oldfashioned sugar, candy bars, twizzlers, bananas or any kind of protein bars on the market providing they have a good sugar content as well. Some ladies carry just regular candy bars.

On a ride you need food that will make it to your system fast, protein will not, so eating nuts on a ride will not give you the quick sugar blast that your body needs.

Most of us can bike 20-25 miles without food but with a good drink. But once we start doing 40-50 miles, you need FOOD.

Feel free to add a comment here of what you have found works for you on a ride.

West Chester Shines this weekend

High Street in West Chester, PA

Hey Portland, Oregon, maybe just maybe, your town is getting some competition as far as biking goes. All I read about is Portland and its fabo biking, well, game on!

OK folks, West Chester is slowly becoming the place to be and the place to be seen. We can thank Bam of the movie "Jackass" for bringing West Chester to the young folks and making it a place where kids hoped to see Bam on the streets.

But this weekend, West Chester is gonna be BIKING KING. At Hot Foot Saturday morning, 70-80 riders will take off for rides with the West Chester Cycling Club.

The Iron Hill Criterium will take place from 3 pm to 11 pm with activities for all ages and a first class Crit. See some exciting bike racing up close and personal.

Sunday provides Community rides starting from Hoopes Park at 11 am. Picnic to follow and available for all.

It just does not get any better for a town in regards to biking. And it is right here in our backyard.

Monday, July 6, 2009

changed cue for saturday

cue #165, less miles, got a lot of standing to do at the Crit and then I have a ride on Sunday and I do not want to collapse!!!

Free Emergency Medical ID Wallet Card ( ICE ) in case of emergency

Please take the time and create a free medical alert ID card, print it and put it into your bike bag. Take a few minutes to make one, it could be invaluable if you are in an accident.

emailed the site, privacy policies are clearly stated on the webpage if concerned

Sunday, July 5, 2009

what to bring for a bike ride

Biker Chicks ride leader, Libby, would like to remind riders in her group, please come with the following:

1. ID bracelet or something similar, drivers license or insurance card

2. cell phone with contact name ICE (in case of emergency)

3. any special medical information that the ride leader would need if you were to be in an accident, have this information on a card in your bike bag

4. ICE contact being someone who will answer the phone and be able to come get you, that means that they need a map or such if they are unfamiliar with the roads in chester county, i dont want have to give directions to person on phone other than the location of where we are or take the time to teach contact how to use google maps

5. BRING CUE and make sure you know where we are going and let your contact know where you are going as well

i do all of the above for every ride i go on, most do not, but if riding with me, make an effort to do the above, thanks and appreciation is given beforehand

Rides for week of July 5 BIG BIG weekend (July 11,12) for Chicks

I am not offering any evening rides this week. Instead I am riding the Schuylkill River Trail.

Looking for newbies to ride with or oldies. EMAIL me if coming,

Tuesday morning 10 am Betzwood Bridge NEWBIE ride. SLOW and EASY and will combine this ride with a faster pace afterwards and continue on the trail for a total of 30 or so miles.

Wed, Thurs, depending on weather, SRT again, fast paced ride 30 or so miles.

Saturday July 11 730 AM cue#165 NOTE the early start time, got the Iron Hill Crit in the afternoon

bring cue

July 11 5 pm

Sunday Iron Hill Community Rides 11 am - HOOPES PARK in WC boro, W Ashbridge St

1. Tour of the Alleys and Gardens of West Chester
Cue Sht 64-10 miles

2. Tour of the Parks of West Chester
Cue Sht 63-7.5 miles

3. Hill Hell Tour
Cue Sht 59-30 miles

4. Stargazer Winery Tour-Randy Roday
Cue Sht 62-28 miles

5. Quaker Tour-Libby Maxim
Cue Sht 61-23 miles

6. Two Towns Tour-
Bob Lamb
Cue Sht 60-32 miles

JULY 12 Twitter Party and Bike Clinic 4 pm

email Connie Snyder for directions and details

Saturday, July 4, 2009

chester county at its finest

Chicks rode 42 miles today through countryside so pretty, it should be illegal. Just one horse farm after the next, went through a covered bridge and biked along the Brandywine River.

The weather today was unbelievable, it is as if someone hijacked West Chester and moved it to the central coast of California.

Cool, bright blue and dry. You could not order a more perfect day.

Biking in Chester County is one of the activities that should be promoted more by the tourist bureau, cuz until you have biked on the back roads, you have no idea what you are missing.

A real gem!

Friday, July 3, 2009

o say can you see

-Francis Scott Key, 1814

O say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hail'd at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watch'd, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
On the shore dimly seen thro' the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected, now shines on the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner: O, long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash'd out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
O thus be it ever when free-men shall stand
Between their lov'd home and the war's desolation;
Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land
Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust!"
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

today's version

Oh, say, can you see by the dawn's early light,

What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?

Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro' the perilous fight,

O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?

And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in air,

Gave proof thro' the night that our flag was still there.

Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave

O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

fabo ride tonight

We had one fine ride tonight, weather was perfect, cool and dry, and then I get home and sit down in front of the TV and BOOM, skies open up and it starts pouring rain.

We were lucky to have such a picture perfect ride. But when I got home, I ran a battery check on my bike lights and put fresh batteries in my lights.

Even if lights are still working, they get dim over time unless you keep fresh batteries in them. So go out into the garage and change the batteries in your bike lights.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

how to be safe on the road

Someone emailed me about what to do when an angry motorist harasses you on the road?

I am not sure there is much we can do about jerks on the road but there are some things you can do as a cyclist.

1. You must be constantly aware of where you are on the road, you MUST use a rear view mirror so you can monitor what is coming up behind you. Don't talk so much with friends that you forgot that you are just like a motorist on the road and need to BE alert.

2. Never stop in the middle of an intersection, stay to the right and if turning left, carefully take the lane when no cars are coming.

3. Bike straight, bike predictably on the road, use hand signals ALL the time when turning.

4. If biking with friends, YOU must ride single file when cars are coming.

5. Be aware if you are riding on a curvy road and you have a long line of cars behind you, consider pulling off and letting them pass, BE COURTEOUS and someone might be courteous back to you.

6. OBEY all traffic signs, signals and I mean, STOP at lights and wait for green. Don't talk on the cell phone or make sudden stops.

7. If you are still harassed by a motorist, IGNORE them if possible. If they are abusive, and you can think fast enough to get your cell phone out and snap a pic of their car and license, you can make a police report.

8. My strongest advice to all female riders is to ride in pairs and to never interact with a motorist. If riding alone, stick to well traveled roads. Lots of cars are actually sometimes safer than no cars.

calling all chicks

Fourth of July Weekend, what is your excuse for not riding on Saturday? you have an extra day to do chores and whatnot, and forecast for Saturday is supposed to be SPECTACULAR.

Ride starts at 7:50 am, that means we leave at 7:50, if you get to the lot at 7:52, we will be gone.

WCCC is trying to space the ride departures, so we have to take off on time. Cue is #161,39 miles and we get to go through a covered bridge. Great , great ride.