Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Riding in the Ice & Snow


It snowed last night in the Puget Sound area and everybody freaked out. If you don't have any place you need to go, the smart thing to do when the weather turns bad is to hunker down and stay put. Even if you have perfect control, perfect traction and perfect reflexes, there are a lot of folks out there piloting big metal boxes of momentum down slippery streets and things get real messy, real fast. We closed up the bike shop early and I walked the four blocks to home like I always do.

This morning, however, it's like a holiday. The schools and a bunch of businesses are closed, a lot of folks are out on foot most of those driving seem to be driving quite cautiously. The sky is blue, the sun is bright and the air is cold. Snow is everywhere.


My bike is the one I've built up for days like this, a low-ratio fixed gear with big platform pedals and carbide-studded tires. The tires crunch wonderfully through the snow and the studs grab solidly on the ice. At the bridge over the creek I see a pair of ducks with their down puffed up against the cold.


I puff up my own warm layer, pause to take another picture and see my breath crystallize in the in the blue light of the morning. I roll on toward the grocery store, to the other errands, to the rest of the day.

It's a good day to ride.

Keep 'em rolling,

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA




9 comments:

Gunnar Berg said...

Do you follow
http://mnbicyclecommuter.blogspot.com/

If not, why not? Duluth and all, you know. He has put together an interesting bike.

RJ said...

I was SO excited to ride to the grocery store today!! :)

Kent Peterson said...

Gunnar,

Doug's blog as been on my list of links for years!. I've got a fondness for internal hubs, but still prefer a fixie for absolute simplicity.

Gunnar Berg said...

Dear 1%er,
For 99% of the people, Duluth's hills on a fixie would be pretty much theoretical.

Kent Peterson said...

Yeah they say the same things about Seattle and San Francisco and you see a bunch of fixies there.

I never claim my choices will be other people's choices, I merely state what works for me.

In the 19th century bike boom, everybody rode fixies!

D Housley said...

thanks for the tip on the manzella windstopper gloves, fantastic.

Maggie said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you, Christine, and the boys.

John said...

What's that long flap hanging off your rear rack? That would work well for mt. Bikes that lack a full fender but have a rack. Please let me know.

Thanks!

Kent Peterson said...

John,

It's coroplast. I've written about coroplast for years. Search this blog for "coroplast" or this post will get you started:

http://bit.ly/htpZud