Saturday, March 26, 2011

Sydney at the Community Arts Day Talent Show

This morning Sydney rode her unicycle at the Community Arts Day Talent show!

She did very well!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Syd's Uno and Fun in the Sun

About a week ago I ordered Sydney a new unicycle. It's actually almost identical to her current one, but it has an alloy rim instead of steel. Her rim wasn't straight and steel is harder to true. Plus this new one has a better tire for pavement, where she normally rides. You could say this is a birthday gift, but I don't need a birthday to keep my own kid interested in my passion!

Here are some pics:

It feels like it's slightly better quality than her first uni. Syd seems to like it.

I had fun with my 20" uni also. For the winter, I had messed around with it in the very limited space in my basement. It was good to bring it out in the sunshine. It's a bit easier to hop around on than my 24" muni. Hopefully I can learn some skills more easily on the 20 and then apply those to my muni riding.
Amy took a few pics of me. Not the most impressive, but I was just warming up. And the season has just begun. ;P

I practiced some rolling hops too. For my non-uni readers, that's riding straight at an object and hopping it. Just like a bunny hop on a bike. On a uni, everything's a bit more difficult, but without a freewheel your cranks aren't always in a good position when it's time to hop. For now at least, that means only a portion of my attempts are even possible. Well I managed to do a few rolling hops over 4". It's a start!

I also rode around the block on my 20" while Sydney rode her new 16". Our speeds matched more nicely than on my 24".
Later Kyle wanted to ride his 24" geared mountain bike around the block and asked me to join him. I rode my 24" uni, mostly in high gear and our speeds matched quite well, at about 9 mph. Though it was a very casual ride for him. We ended up riding outside our neighborhood and rode 2.7 miles.

It was a nice first day of spring.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Wet Trails and Twilight Zone

With the snow melted and the sun shining (though 35°F), how could I not go out for a ride? I rode to the Hojack Trail again, but this time I expected to actually be able to ride it.
Instead of taking the road all the way there, I rode to the relatively new Webster Parks and Rec, through a trail that was just made last year. It was very muddy, with lots of standing water, and not much rideable trail.
That trail leads to the Bird Sanctuary trail which has been there for much longer. That still had some muddy spots, was most of it could be ridden.
I then rode some more street to get to the Hojack. The first section of trail into the Hojack was total mud and standing water, as it most always is. The Hojack itself was mostly rideable.
But some parts of the trail were in very bad condition. Some parts were dry, but had bumps, ridges, and holes from heaving, and from bikers and hikers leaving impressions when it was softer. Some parts were very soft, others had lots of mud, and others had standing water. Some still had packed snow. My riding definitely left marks in the mud, but it didn't seem to matter considering the hundreds of boot prints and the trenches from bikers.
It was much harder to ride than when it's dry. It took a lot more energy and my lower back was getting fatigued soon after reaching the farthest point on the Hojack.
On my way back I rode around North Ponds park on the paved path as long as it was right there. Nothing too exciting there. I skipped the Webster Parks and Rec trail since it was so muddy, and took the road instead.

On the Hojack I had planned to use my high gear. It's generally flat so I envisioned some fast riding. But on the way to the far end I convinced myself it was actually a gradual incline. I had never really noticed that in the past. And with the soft ground slowing me down, it didn't seem like a good time to go to high gear. When I was on some of the drier, seemingly inclined areas, I was excited to think of the way back, riding on a slight decline in high gear.
But then on the way back, it looked like a slight incline again! Uphill both ways? Huh? I felt like I was in the Twilight Zone. After riding a few minutes, I looked back, and it looked like a slight incline too. Maybe my eyes need adjusting. Despite thinking it was a slight incline I ended up switching into high gear whenever the ground wasn't too wet, and I did get some good chances to ride faster.

For some unknown reason my GPS didn't record my way back on the Hojack properly. It shows me way off the trail. Huh. Maybe I WAS in the Twilight Zone!

My cycle computer says I rode 12.76 miles. Average speed was 6 mph, max was 11 mph.

Hojack, Etc - 2011-03-19

Friday, March 11, 2011

Selling Grease

I wanted to buy some grease for my Schlumpf hub. Long story short, I bought more than I needed with the intention to sell it to my fellow geared unicyclists.

Here's the page where I'm selling it.