one of the more fun things in life is sipping suds under stars with your neighbors. bike-in movies rock, which is why fitzgerald’s bicycles is hosting their second annual series this year. i’m still sure that RAD was the best movie that we’ve seen so far!
if you haven’t experienced an xtracycle, i highly recommend trying one out. they ride great, and are uber functional. it’s always fun after you’re barbecuing with a bunch of folks, and you realize you have run out of beer. you look around, and no one is really into jumping into their car to get some more booz. then you realize you have the xtracycle, sweet! 6 cases of PBR - no problem. or if your friend needs a ride, they can jump on the back. and lastly, you are not restricted by what you buy at the grocery store like you would be with just a messenger bag. economy pack of toilet paper? sure. tomato and basil starter plants? let’s go for a ride!
costa rica is, for a lot of reasons, awesome. the fruits are divine. the people are friendly. and if you spend most of your time in a land locked state – you are finally able to tear your clothes off and sprint into the ocean. but one thing that caught my eye was their bike culture. they would ride on long unpaved roads on clunkers, because, well, that’s apart of their life. i also saw a lot of vendors that utilized bicycles to move their product – usually coconuts, ice cream or something cold. i might need to have my neighbor, tim, weld me one of these cargo contraptions.
and if you didn’t know, bike touring in costa rica can fit the vacation you went there for.
“how far is it to selvin’s?”
“oh, it’s at least 2 or 3 towns over”
however, 30 minutes of riding on a single speed beach cruise will get you there. oh, and the steeds cost a whopping 5 dollars per day. perfect.
so this was a gift to a couple in Jackson from Bruce Willis. then there was a split up. then a law suit, and neither party wanted the bike, but the nanny did. then the nanny gave it to a friend because she didn’t have a place to put it… the story is something screwy like that. either way, you can find 4 ski bums on any given night riding this from bar to bar around town. pretty rad!
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
i haven’t done a huge amount of touring. but, i’ve done enough to know it’s what i like to do. my last tour was more of a bike-move, covering 500 miles from colorado to jackson hole with my skis, climbing gear, and camping gear all while dodging the fists of cowboys in bars. no, this last one was the complete opposite. 2 and half days. 260 miles. minimal gear. i got the idea after seeing some of jay petervary’s tour gear that he gets from carousel design works. i utilized my weekend to its best potential. headed north after work (on my friday) to camp at flag ranch (55mi). day 2 – went through the south entrance of yellowstone, exited out the west entrance, took a nap in west yellowstone, visited freeheel & wheel, camped in island park (102mi). day 3 – rode home, finishing with teton pass – ouch (101mi). it’s damn fun to tour when your loaded rig is under 26 lbs, but i still prefer a steel bike – so maybe next year i’ll swap it out.
BUT MAYBE NOT
this type of touring has two objectives for me. first, it’s always nice to get out of town, and it’s best to do it by bike (obviously). secondly, i am ‘training’ for LOTOJA. and everything is going as planned: i am in route to get my ass kicked. i wasn’t even really planning on getting in. while reading my hundreds of emails after spending a few weeks in costa rica this spring, i read “congratulations, you got in to lotoja” – damnit. i put my cocktail down, and rode my bike. in the rain. the good thing is that while focusing on this race i am learning a great deal about cycling. however, i know i’m out of my league. and am sitting here telling myself “andy, don’t do it, you have no business riding with them” – when that first group attacks, i will not be able to hold back, and i will most definitely put myself in a hurt locker that i’ve never been in before in my life. should make for a good story at the bar at least.
i attempted to set up a bikewire in west yellowstone, but unfortunately it didn’t materialize. if anybody wants something (small) delivered from jackson, and is within 150 miles, let me know!
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZnplxZQkQg]if you find yourself in phili and see a crazy guy hauling 600 lbs of recycling and composting bins then you have found the pedal co-op. the cool thing about an organization like this is you know they come up with the idea at 2am while drinking pitchers of PBR at bar, found it scratched out on a coaster the next day, and just rolled with it. even more impressive is the fact that these guys are providing a service comparable to automobiles due mainly to their passion and bike skills. just another example of people proving the effectiveness of bikes.
bikewire.org is making moves. we are in the process of doing more development of the website, beginning a marketing campaign, and looking for sponsors. did i mention it’s beautiful out? getting steep rides in have been a lot of fun and i know we are all looking forward to the bike season!
bikewire.org is a website to connect people who want to use a bicycle as a utility. more to come!