Monday, February 20, 2012

Cycling Is For Everyone

Cycling For Everyone from Dutch Cycling Embassy on Vimeo.

I enjoy watching these videos.

"Hell yes, we could do that here!"

A sustained string of pro-cycling municipal governments could make it happen.  The only wrinkles I can see are wide acceptance of electric cars and/or an ice age.  The ice age likely won't happen in my lifetime, but the electric car thing - that's a concern.  Being stuck in quiet, zero-emissions traffic isn't any better than what we have now.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tuesday, October 11, 2011



It has been two months since I came out of the woods, put on some cufflinks and started riding QWERTY.

I miss the woods. The gin smell of conifers, the freehub squirrels. Grouse thumping. SHUNK goes the mattock into the ground. When it's dry the dust fills the air and beams of light punch through the gaps between the branches like girders in an abandoned construction site. You can hear the cows down by the creek, polluting the watershed with explosive diarrhea. Sorry, didn't mean to paint that picture. Take it down and replace it with a curious chipmunk, darting across my path at the last possible second, tail whipping all about.

I've made a couple of trips out to work the trail since August, and I'll make a couple more before the snow sets in for good. There are a couple of puddles that I need to take care of, a section of trail that needs some smoothification.  I'd be lying if I said it was thankless work.  People thank me all the time as they ride by.  I thank myself when I ride the trail. "This kicks ass", I think. Sometimes I'm overly critical of others' work, but then I give myself a metaphorical boot in the ass and look at all the hard work they put in. Judge not, lest ye be judged, sang Mr. Marley.

I'm already thinking about next year.  I'm thinking about how I can ditch work at the start of June to go build in West Bragg, maybe learn to drive a mini-ex. I don't like diesel fumes, so maybe I'll just swing the mattock.

SHUNK. Smell the earth below the duff. Hold the soil in your hand. See the grains, the pebbles, bits of root. Listen for the wind moving through the forest, one tree at a time. Feel the ping through the handle of the Mcleod when it packs the tread.

See what you have made.

Saturday, August 13, 2011


I've been thinking a lot about trail building lately.  Why do I like it?  Why do I do it?  

Saturday, July 23, 2011

On the Road - BC Riding Part 3

Typical weather in BC during July is sunny and hot.  2011 is the year to buck the trend.  With most of Canada experiencing a "heat dome" [SRSLY], BC and AB are experiencing a craptacular weather event.  It's like May was extended and made marginally warmer for all of June and July.  Ridiculous.  Anyway, after leaving Whizgnar, we found ourselves in Squampton.  I was still feeling like crap, but the Howe Sound Inn's healing powers beckoned to me...

Despite the drizzle and cloudy skies, 18 hours of sleep had me feeling well enough to venture outside for a ride.  We rode from the Inn to the SAC, bought a trail map and then fumbled about trying to find some trails to ride.  We wound up riding for over three hours on some great trails, including Lost Loop, S+M, 7 Stitches, etc.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

On the Road - BC Riding part 2

We rolled into Kamloops on Sunday afternoon, the hot, dry air a reminder of what we left in Calgary a few days prior.  We had no place to stay, but I had an ace up my sleeve - PinkGeezers.  A quick post et voila!  Monique to the rescue!  Monique knows everybody concerned with riding in Kamloops, and she hooked us up with her buddy Jeremy.  Jeremy operates DropInns Bed & Breakfast out of his home in the Aberdeen area of Kamloops.  
Space for your bikes in Jeremy's garage

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

On the Road - BC Riding

Sam and I had the idea to go for a road trip through BC, as we had our asses kicked by most of the trails in Southern Alberta, and wanted BC to have the same opportunity.  Vacation time was booked, plans were sketched out and not confirmed, reservations were never made.

Our first stop was Revelstoke.  We got in later than we had planned, and it was raining.  To the pub for $3 pints!  Huzzah!  The town was pretty quiet, a far cry from the hustle of the snow season.  There were a few tourists around, but we had to look pretty hard for AB plates.  After dinner we took the rest of the night off, did some reading and planned for Saturday morning.