Monday, April 30, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Zoo Hill

Today is the final day of the #30DaysofBiking and the Blogging From A to Z Challenge. It's a damp, misty morning here in Issaquah but I rode up Zoo Hill, a 1000 foot climb up Cougar Mountain. describes Zoo Hill thusly:

Zoo Hill - named after the small zoo at the bottom - is arguably the toughest climb in the Seattle area. Ascending 1200 feet over 2.5 miles, it has an average grade of about 10%, with common gradients in 15% and some sections approaching 20%. This is not a climb to be approached lightly.

Or, as one rider noted, "Zoo Hill is the puke-inducing lactate-producing gasp-fest that I avoid unless taunted"

I didn't do the top stub of the climb that goes up to the old Nike Missile Site so I "only" got 1000 feet of climbing in before I looped back for home via Lakemont Boulevard. BTW, I neither gasped, puked or walked. I did spend a lot of time spinning the lowest gear on my Allant, however.

13 miles this morning. The total miles for the month is 310 miles.

Keep 'em rolling,

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Sunday, April 29, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Grocery Ride

It's another "free" day in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge but it's another day of riding for the #30DaysofBiking. Nothing fancy today, just a four mile loop to Trader Joe's for some groceries.

I carry a tiny nylon grocery bag with me. It stuffs down really small and folds out to something big enough to hold a loaf of bread, other stuff for sandwiches, granola bars, coffee, a couple of tins of smoked trout and one of those dark chocolate with sea salt & caramel bars that I seem to buy every time I go to Trader Joe's. I can loop the bag over my shoulder like a messenger bag or tie it to my bike rack like a mini pannier.

4 miles today.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Saturday, April 28, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Yellow Submarine Yard Art

Today's letter is "Y" so I rode south on the Issaquah-Hobart road to get a couple of pictures of one of the more distinctive bits of yard art around these parts, a rusting Yellow Submarine.

I took a couple of pictures of other examples of yard art while I was out and about.

21 miles this morning.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Friday, April 27, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: XXX Date with my Sweetie

Some folks who stumbled on this blog via a Google search may be bitterly disappointed to find out that the XXX in the title of this blog post refers to wonderful old XXX Drive In here in Issaquah. Of course, Christine and I don't drive anywhere, it's not our style. We bike. So tonight we biked over to the XXX for cheeseburgers and onion rings. Christine had a chocolate shake and I had a chocolate malt. And while the food at the XXX might not be good for you, it sure is good.

1 mile of riding today.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Thursday, April 26, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Wetlands, Waterfowl and a Wonderful Wind Map

For today's #30DaysofBiking, I visited the wetland areas in the State Park at the south end of Lake Sammamish. This is lovely bit of damp green land is home to a wide range of creatures and while I saw a bald eagle, the geese and the ducks were the creatures who stayed still long enough to put up with my  attempts at photography.

Today is the "W" day in my alphablogging and even though today isn't particularly windy here, I want to direct your attention to the wonderful wind map at:

Click the link, it's worth it. It's real time map of the US, showing the current wind flow. Click anywhere on the map to zoom in, click and drag to move it. Pretty cool, eh?

I stopped for groceries on my way home from the wetlands.

6 miles for the day.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Venti, Not Vashon

I had great, virtuous plans for the "V" day of #30DaysofBiking. I would rise early, meet up with friends, ride to Vashon Island and check on the bike tree. But alas, all the friends I asked had jobs they had to go to or other commitments for the day, so that plan was thwarted. I could go alone, but when the day dawns very wet, the idea of venturing out early loses a lot of its appeal.

My wise wife points out that I've been working very hard lately. The nice weather has made it very busy at the bike shop and between working, riding, writing and blogging, I've really not had a good day of doing not much in a while. The good weather has decided to be elsewhere today, which is Wednesday to most people but with my work every weekend schedule it's like a Saturday to me.

"Rainy days," Christine notes, "are for taking it easy, maybe going to the coffee shop." I married a very smart woman.

"Maybe you need a very big cup of coffee," she said, "V is for Venti."

So we ride to Starbucks.

It is clearing up by the time we venture out on our velocipedes and the sun is shining as we ride back home.

3 miles for the day.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Undercrossings

The letter for today is "U" and I chose Undercrossings for the theme of this morning's ride. Some of the big multi-lane roads in Issaquah, like I-90 and Highlands Drive, have nice undercrossings for cyclists and pedestrians.

This one, which goes under NW Sammamish Road, is underwater for part of the year.

This isn't an undercrossing, but I haven't mentioned it before. It's the big Bike-Ped bridge over I-90 at the west edge of town.

6 miles this morning.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Monday, April 23, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Train Tracks & Trails

It's another beautiful spring morning here in Issaquah. I had a few minutes to get in a quick ride before breakfast. The train used to run through Issaquah but now the old 42 mile rail line around the north end of Lake Washington is mostly a series of bike trails. A small section of rail still exists in downtown Issaquah and a trolley car is being refurbished to run from the Depot Museum to Gilman Boulevard as a tourist attraction.

The old caboose on Gilman Boulevard marks the southernmost tip of the Lake Sammamish Trail. Like much of the past, it's been re-purposed and now does business as a barber shop.

This section of the trail will be paved this year.

As I rolled towards home, I got a picture of this little guy.

3 miles this morning.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah WA USA

Sunday, April 22, 2012

#30DaysofBiking: Snoqualmie Falls

It's another day off in the Blogging From A to Z Challenge, but it's still one of the #30DaysofBiking as well as being a beautiful Sunday here in the Pacific Northwest and I don't have to be at work until noon. I rode up and over the Plateau on the Issaquah-Fall City Road and then followed Fish Hatchery Road and 202 up to the Falls.

It was still pretty misty by the river. On clear days, the Falls are quite spectacular.

30 miles for the day.

Kent "Mountain Turtle" Peterson
Issaquah, WA USA