Saturday, March 9, 2013

Ridding the Buffalo

Today I got a chance to actually get out and ride my bike FOR FUN! It has got to be more than a month since I last got a chance to go ride more than just my measly little mile and a half round trip commute. But with temperatures in the low 60's and an afternoon free how could I not! So I met up with one of my girlfriends and we set out to ride over Buffalo Mountain.

See that mountain covered in snow in the distance? That's Buffalo Mountain in the Cherokee National Forest. It's an absolutely gorgeous ride on a fairly low traffic road through the park. It's also a popular ride for area cyclists and motorcyclists. Here's a link to the route and elevation chart on Map My Ride. I got so wrapped up in enjoying the ride that I didn't take many pictures, but here's a few:

I really want to climb out on the end of that rock and just watch the river flow by.

The other side of Buffalo Mountain, over the Nolichcky River.

We came into this valley on a road that follows the river. Here's Mlle Moto getting some love from Shadowfax. :)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

DIY: Saddle Cover From an Old Raincoat

Here's a quick little DIY waterproof saddle cover for you.


Old vinyl raincoat
Elastic (1/4 inch)
Sewing Machine
Sharpie marker
Big safety pin

Lay your old raincoat out and place your saddle on it top down.

Trace around your saddle about 4 1/2 inch out from the sides (more at the back end if you have springs you want to cover).

Cut out and fold edges in about 1/2 inch, Sew down to make a casing for the elastic. Leave about a 2 inch open space at the back for threading your elastic through.

Measure around your saddle cover and cut a piece of elastic 2 inches shorter than your measurement.

Attach your safety pin to one end of the elastic and work it through the casing. Once through, sew the two ends together.

Your saddle cover should scrunch up like a shower cap now. All thats left is to sew up the hole! You can seal the seam with some wax if you want. I never did and have not had any problems with water seeping through.

I've been using this saddle cover for well over a year now. It's been through heavy rains, snows, sleet and freezing rain, summer heat and everything else that it can possibly be exposed to sitting outdoors all day. It's held up wonderfully!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

DIY Cycling Cap

It's been awhile since I shared a DIY project, so I thought that I would start new year off a new hat! I've been collecting both hat patterns and scrap fabric, and came across this hem from a skirt that had just enough to make this cycling cap from Dude Craft.  This is a really easy FREE pattern.

Cute, eh? And it's lined too!

So go get you some scrap fabric (old pants and shirts, sport coats, curtains, etc. Thrift shops are great places to find fabric for cheap!). You'll also need 3/4" twill tape (long enough to go around your head + and inch or two to be on the safe side), about 3" of 1/2" elastic and either a thin plastic binder or a yogurt (or similar) container for the brim. This makes a great weekend project for those weekends that you aren't out there riding. ;)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

So, Everybody's Kitchen Looks Like This, Right?

I was tidying up a bit in the kitchen a couple of weeks back and started noticing a theme...

Bikes and trike parts and tools...

Wheel sets tucked into corners...

Brake parts about to disappear under the stove...

Floor pump (and an unrelated stock pot of shoes) by the litter boxes...

Sprocket clusters, spokes and hubs in trays...

And a frame, fenders, two rear racks (I found an old Pletscher under the faux leaves...) and frame pump with the cat food! I forgot the big toolbox that actually lives in the kitchen now, on a table by the microwave. It's full of bike bits and tools. Ah, hobbies. :)

Saturday, December 1, 2012

An Itty Bitty Tweed Ride

Last night we went on an itty bitty Tweed Ride. It was hosted by a local bicycle advocacy group called the Johnson City Bike Party.

Here's the lot of us. All 17 and 1 dog. For a town with very few bicycle commuters, I'd say that was a decent turnout! And it was a good mix of people from a wide range of ages, skill levels and steed preferences. 

Which is how I found myself surrounded by recumbent trikes! Three, including my husband's. I'll admit to a bit of a fascination with the recumbent trikes, and find myself toying with the idea of getting one. Maybe... ;)  

It was a leisurly ride, about 7 miles with a couple of stops along the way and a quiet little after party at a local bakery. The ride went along at quite a slow pace. A bit too slow for me at times. Even on the Pashley. But it was a nice chilly night, good for poking along and chatting with folks without being out of breath. We met some new people, and a couple of ladies I plan to meet up with for some rides. It was also interesting to get a chance to ride the Pashley in an environment more closely resembling that which it was designed for, and it made me miss living "in town". As an "out in the sticks and up on a big hill" commuter it holds it's own, but it really shines as a city commuter. 

And while I was out with the group, I bought one of their tee shirts. What the heck, eh? :)

Friday, November 16, 2012

A Close Call

Today a friend of mine was hit by a motorist. He's ok, in the hospital with a broken collar bone, some road rash and bruises. It was a hit and run. So far nobody has come forward with any info or description of who hit him. So we are all just thankful that he is alive, and try to spread the word through social media in hopes that someone out there knows something. It's about all we can do.

Here's some info on Justin. He's one of the co-founders of the JC Bike Party. Read more here:

JC Bike Party

And be safe out there folks, no matter what your mode of transport is!


Friday, October 12, 2012

Can You See Me Now? Part 1

I do a lot of night ridding. Mostly way out in the country. I've got some really bright lights on my bike, but I have had times when the battery in my taillight runs low and farmers would pull up beside me to tell me that they could barely see my light or me. And with the light being behind me, obviously it's hard to tell if the batteries are running low. So I've bought some SOLAS retro-reflective tape and put it on the rear fender on the Motobecane. I chose SOLAS because it's USCG approved (for watercraft and life vests) and figured that it would be good and waterproof. Also, if it's bright enough to see someone bobbing about in the ocean at night, surely it's bright enough to see a bicycle on a street.

So here's how it looks on the fender under the kitchen lights:

It blends in quite nicely with the fender! I cut three strips. A wider strip to go down the center between the two black lines, and two narrower strips for each side.

Here's how it looks with the lights off using the flash on the camera:

That's pretty bright! It reflects a lot more than the piece of reflective ribbon I've got tied on my bag. Now to take it out for a test run. See if I can get some pictures with car headlights shining on it.